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Winnipeg Railway Station

My reservation stated that the train left at 8.13 PM and arrived at 8.30AM on Saturday, which, apart from the fact that in fact leaves at 7.20PM and arrives at 11.15 AM on Saturday, was almost entirely accurate.

Fortunately, the ticket agent corrected me, checked my large backpack and tucked my carry-on behind the ticket counter, and I went on my way to pass the time for a few hours.

Having been advised that the food on the train is not exactly five-star, and having been urged to stock up on my own eats, I went to The Forks, a collection of stores selling everything from meats to deli foods, to knickknacks to skis to wines to liquors. I bought some rolls from a bakery that filled the air with beautiful odors, some cheese from a gourmet food store where the bored salesperson was tunefully pounding out a rhythm with drinking straw drumsticks.

And then I found what I was really after. I entered the cozy fine liqueur store, and made no bones about what I wanted.

“I need something in a small enough bottle to fit in my backpack for a train journey to Churchill.”

Without batting an eyelid, the guy in the store, pulled down a hip flask-size bottle of brandy, and one of cognac. The cognac was slightly more expensive, he said, but given the choice he would go for that.

Screw it, I said. It’s a long journey. I’ll have both.

So here I am, at Winnipeg Railway Station, prematurely munching on bread and cheese, and waiting to board the train and partake of my hip flask-size bottles of alcohol.

I have no idea when next I will be online.
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