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En route pour Calgary! 

Je pars en voyage, dans ma valise je mets : mes bottes de cowboy…

Heading to Calgary for a year to play as Acting Assistant Concermaster for the Calgary Philharmonic Orchestra.  I am so excited about the months ahead!  New city, new position, new colleagues, what a great adventure!  

Hopped in a cab at 4am for a 6am flight!  Oh boy!!! 

I don’t know much about my future city as I head to the Ottawa airport.  Only what I remember from my previous short visits while on tour and what I can find from a Google search:

"Calgary (pronounced /kælÉ¡ri, kælÉ¡É™ri/) is the largest city in the Province of Alberta, Canada.

Nickname(s): Cowtown, The Stampede City , The Heart of the New West

Motto: Onward

Greater Calgary is the fifth largest CMA in the country after Toronto, Montreal, Vancouver, and Ottawa. Located 300 km (200 mi) due south of Edmonton, Calgary is well-known as a destination for winter sports and ecotourism with a number of major mountain resorts near the city and metropolitan area. Economic activity in Calgary is mostly centred on the petroleum industry." (source: Wikipedia)

One thing I quickly realized while going through security: wearing a top with snap buttons is not a good idea when travelling.  Lots of beeping = lots of patting!  Very time-consuming.  Luckily, the girl who was screening me had a good sense of humour.  The comical aspect of it, increasing exponentially with each snap button discovered, had her and I giggling hysterically by the end.   Oh, and btw, jeans are no good either: too many metal studs.  So, to sum up: jeans, belt, zippered boots and snap-buttons-covered top make for an eventful airport security screening.

The flight was uneventful.  The weather is glorious when I land, which I hope is a sign of things to come for me during the 10 months ahead.  It is really impressive to see the city’s skyscrapers rising from the prairie!  After Jonquière, Montréal, Rochester, Niagary-on-the-Lake, Hartford, Miami, and Ottawa, here I come Calgary!

Sitting in the cab, I can’t wait to see what my 10th living accommodation will look like.  Lovely, it turns out.  Ouf!  That’s a big relief!  I found the place online rather quickly and spoke to owner for a grand total of five minutes before I wired her a mountain of money.  I was in a rush, what else can I say?  I did get a little worried when I couldn’t find a fridge in the lovely house’s lovely kitchen, but I eventually did locate it, hidden in a cupboard.  Very reassuring to know that I will be able to have basic groceries and cold beverages.

I had my first cowboy hat sighting eight minutes into my first downtown walk!  Now, all I have left to do is find a country music radio station and learn a few sad lyrics! 

I’ll be a real cowgirl in no time!