Friday, July 18, 2008
This past week I've been driving to Laval, a city north of Montreal, to work on a contract I've been doing with an adult literacy group there. I've been organizing their library and now I'm at the point of entering all their books into a database. It's a 45-minute drive on roads clogged with traffic, and even worse now that road construction has peaked. After a particularly frustrating drive back home, I realized that I had another option...the Oka Ferry! Hudson, the town where I live, is situated on the Ottawa River but as it is so wide, it is called Lake of Two Mountains. Across the river is Oka (photo below), famed for at least two things: the amazing Oka cheese originally made by Trappist monks and the "Oka Crisis", a 3-month land dispute in 1990 between the Mohawk Nation and the Town of Oka, when a golf course was built on a sacred ancestral burial ground. There are two 10-car ferries that travel between Hudson and Oka, essentially flat-bed barges pulled by power boats. It's a fun way to commute home. So I took the ferry. It took me about 30 minutes longer (as I had to wait for the ferry and the ride across is about 10 minutes) and it cost me $8.50, but when I arrived home I was relaxed and refreshed. It was a heavenly commute...I think I'll do it again!