Posted by: M.J. Bolstad | September 17, 2014

A Much Needed Mini Break: The Ottawa/Gatineau Experience #3

Terrasses de la Chaudiere

An open area in which you can hold meetings or have a coffee break in the government building complex.

I’m afraid I don’t have a very interesting day to share today, since it was not a day off to wander and explore Ottawa or Gatineau. Instead, I was working, though out of a tiny cubicle in the Government of Canada Offices, one of the buildings that makes up les Terrasses de la Chaudière.

My colleague L was kind enough to pick me up for work in the morning, so I didn’t have to cart my laptop the twenty odd minutes it would take me to walk to work.  Once there, she set me up in my cube, and I worked there when I didn’t have meetings with colleagues I’d spoken on the phone with several times but never had the opportunity to speak with in person.

For lunch, we went to la Papaye Verte (Green Papaya), which I’d eaten at Monday night, though this time we were a table of ten instead of my table of one. I’d grabbed a pastry and a coffee after my first meeting, thinking it was earlier than it was, so I wasn’t very hungry over lunch.  I chose just to have a small soup, Tom Kha, which had one pepper by the menu but was perfectly mild for my wimpy stomach.  It is made with mushrooms and coconut milk and was very delicious.  Most of my colleagues had Pad Thai, and it looked delicious.


There wasn’t really anything to take a picture of today, so here is a squirrel. (Though if I could have caught a pic of the two guys with pink balloons and a two legged plastic deer being wheeled on a bicycle down the street, that would be here instead.)

After lunch, it was back to work for another meeting and more putting faces to names, when working to prep for my course tomorrow. I’m very nervous, and even my practicing in my hotel rom hasn’t helped. I keep reminding myself that the purpose of training is to learn and improve, and if I was awesome at it, it would be a waste of money to send me to Ottawa for a course.

After work, L and I went into Ottawa for dinner at a place called Chez Lucien. It’s pub style and the menu is limited, but the food is very good. I had their signature burget, which has cream cheese and mushrooms. It comes with salad and fries, so you don’t have to choose.  After that, we went to Stella Luna, a twee gelato place that I adored. I had blueberry, mint chocolate, and rich chocolate.  The blueberry didn’t really match the other two flavours, but I very badly wanted to eat it, so it worked out.

Tomorrow I get to learn how to keep from babbling and information-dumping when I present to senior officials. Wish me luck!

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