Friday, February 01, 2013

Birthday fun

Sorry for the radio silence It was a busy week! Wednesday was my birthday, and Gordon surprised me with a day trip to Montréal.

I didn't know where we were going until we got to the VIA train station in Alexandria...

I can't remember the last time I was on a VIA train! When I first started seeing Gordon, he was at McGill in Montréal and I was in Toronto, so I spent a lot of time going back and forth on the bus and train. The train was more expensive but far more pleasant. I could usually only afford it when they had a seat sale on. I knit Gordon at least one sweater over trips on the train and bus.

The window was dirty but here we are, rolling into the Gare Centrale...

Gordon took me to a nice café in Old Montréal for lunch. Unfortunately for them, a pipe had burst four floors up and water started seeping in from the ceiling over the cash register while we we there, but that didn't deter them from serving us lunch! They put out buckets. I hope things didn't get too bad after we left. I saw a lot of firemen with squeegees in the adjoining lobby.

The fire trucks lined up in front of Notre Dame Basilica were all there for the burst pipe a few doors down!

The café is at the bottom left, but this is the building with the burst pipe in some law offices on the fourth floor. The building is from the mid-1800s as I recall.

After lunch we got on the Métro and headed out to the 1976 Olympics site to visit the Biodome, which is situated in the former velodrome.

I used to spend a lot of time on this subway when I lived in Montréal and commuted to my job in the sticks.

And here's the stadium, which has been plagued with problems since it was built. When I was there, there was a fire in the tower, and a huge chunk of concrete just fell off the stadium itself.

But the Biodome was fun...

It opened in 1992, the year before we moved back to Toronto. It's looking a little tired around the edges but I still love going there and seeing the animals.

The building is divided into various zones like the Tropical Rainforest and...

... the Laurentian maple forest. Ducks, anyone?

Snoozing porcupine.

Two beautiful Lynx!

And Puffins in the Labrador coast...

They're pretty used to people! I saw Puffins in the wild inCape Breton in Nova Scotia, and I find them completely charming.

The penguins in the Sub-Antarctic Islands zone were cute too...

Feeding time!

More pictures to come...

Hope you all have a great weekend!


  1. We had a wonderful trip to Montreal in 1993, but I'm sure things have changed. Nonetheless, it is a beautiful city and our girls had such a good time riding the tube and going out for New Year's Eve! Happy Birthday, XOXO

  2. Bon anniversaire!
    Jane x

  3. happy birthday. You had a wonderful day and covered a lot of history as you told about all the fun you had.

  4. Happy Birthday! Those puffins look like they came right out of the mind of Gary Trudeau! Check out those strange eyes. They look like the characters from Doonesbury.

  5. Looks like the perfect birthday. Those Crocs/Alligators look extremely comfortable in their tropical paradise. Happy birthday from here!

  6. Happy birthday! That was so sweet of him to give you a surprise day trip.

  7. Looks like you had a great day Nat!

  8. Gosh I love looking through your window, so to speak.

  9. Looks like a grand time. Too bad people were having all those pipe breaks. I sure can relate to that!

    I am doing a commission and they want Penguins! Any more pics closeup???? hahahahaha.

  10. Happy Birthday!
    Looks like you had a great time!

  11. Glad you had such a great day.
    Ducks, puffins and penguins, birthdays don't come much better than that.

    I was lucky enough to see puffins in the wild in Shetland, Scotland. It was supposed to be a business trip until the guy I was meeting found out I love puffins. So much nicer than work!

  12. Happy Birthday! Now that you're of legal drinking age, I hope you enjoyed your first! Great photos as always!

  13. Happy Birthday!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  14. Looks like a great place to visit. I didn't know porcupines could climb trees.

    Happy belated birthday!


Thank you for all your comments, which I love to read!