And a good evening to you from the Great White North, where it's snowing YET AGAIN while the temperature plummets like a STONE. The exciting part? The HIGH tomorrow is supposed to be 13 Fahrenheit, with a low of -4. That's right - who will probably need a shot of adrenaline to walk outside for more than 5 minutes? THIS GUY...
So apologies for no blog the last couple of nights, but Go Live is a crazy time (Granville Six - insert all the "what the hell do you really do for a living anyway?" jokes here). However, through it all, we did manage to have some fun.
Wednesday was a GREAT day. For starters, thanks to the AMAZING people I work with, the project launch was a GREAT success. After more than a year of work, I must confess that it was really gratifying to see it all come together and pay off. Full marks, guys - you are the BEST.
To celebrate, we rolled into Byward Market, a fun little area of Ottawa, where the Shogun found us a GREAT seafood place/Belgian Beer restaurant. This place was the JAM.
So we roll downstairs to the bar, where the waiter tells us that they have over 300 wines and 150 beers in bottles. Without waiting for him to finish his sentence, Riegel and I accost him and ask for the beer menu. We begin flipping through it (they even had Tusker!), only to notice that, once we get to the end, there isn't a SINGLE BELGIAN BEER IN THE LIST. Dismayed, we flip back through, thinking we'll select a German beer. Only then did we see the line (in about 400 font - IDIOTS) on the front page:
FOR BELGIAN BEERS, PLEASE ASK BARTENDER FOR BELGIAN MENU...details...
5 minutes later, I am sitting with a Czechvar in one hand and a Westmalle Tripel in the other...life was good.
This place was awesome. I had fresh Nova Scotia lobster (don't worry - half price!) - meaning that poor Sebastian died to feed me. Man, was it tasty. Throw in some GREAT Belgian brew, a lot of laughs, and a good stress release, and you've got a recipe for a good time. But wait, theeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeere's more!
After leaving dinner, we left the province and our English speaking brethren behind to make a short jaunt across the Ottawa river (nearly frozen on top) into Quebec. Why, you ask? FOR THE LAC LEAMY CASINO - OH YEAH, BABY!!!!!
Talk about AWESOME. Craps, slots, pai gow, you name it. Ogas - this place is the JAM, man! Brother Dan and I rolled to the craps table (only a half shoe - odd), where I proceeded to play for the next 2 hours. I will admit (slightly embarassed, but hey - you all know I'm cheap as hell) that it was the first time I've ever sat at a $10 table, but it was AWESOME! At one point I was up $100, but I ended the day down $19 after 2 hours and about 5 turns as the shooter (the last two were CRAP - no pun intended).
The next night was a good one, if quieter. After work, we had a drink (I went with the Sergean Major, a local Ottawa brew) at the hotel bar with Johnson, Kunal, and Barkin, where Kunal whipped out coupons for free apps. And we're not talking the salted, moldy cheese and oily tuna you get in Mad City - this stuff was GOOD. Kunal, between the apps and your knowledge of OTL - you are a good man to know. :-)
We then rolled over to McLaren's, where Scott and company had already set up shop in front of a GINORMOUS TV. We then spent the next 4 hours watching the national championship. And while I am pleased to say ROOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOLL TIDE, I really hated to see McCoy go down and end his career that way. I must say full marks for your poise and character at the end, young man - very well said, and gracious even in defeat.
This weekend should be a lot of fun. JT and I are sticking around in Ottawa (for the tropical weather, obviously!) to do some more gambling and consume great food and beer (shocking, I know). Given that, you won't get another blog until Monday evening, when we're back in the UK. Price - I know, I know...sorry dude.
Okay, that's all the news that's fit to print. Chat on Monday - wish us luck getting through the airport!
Sam and Jenny