Javi vs the Plow: Speculative Fiction
It strikes home because my family immigrated to Canada when I was two-and-a-half. We were actually on our way to Australia. The idea was to visit family here in Montreal. Then take the train to Vancouver. Visit more family there before taking the boat to Sydney.
We arrived in mid-June when Montreal is hot, humid and gorgeous.
My Mom tells a story of being on the bus in November.
"Il fait froid, " she told the woman seated next to her. It's cold.
"Oui, l'hiver s'en vient," the woman replied. Yes, winter is coming.
My Mom freaked out. She thought winter was already here. Oh, no, it wasn't.
The original thing I remember was a fictitious series of letters a new Quebecer writes home. I decided to have some fun with it. I'm rewriting it as a series of emails Javier sends Juan after opening a beBee Canada office in Montreal.
WARNING: This ain't PC. I hope you enjoy reading it as much as I did writing it.
Enviado: 30 Noviembre, 2016, 22:27
(translated)Things are going great here, Juan. Everything is on schedule.
It's funny though, everybody is warning me about winter. People here think Spain is all great weather and beaches. I tell them we have the Pyrenes! We have snow. I'm looking forward to showing them all how a Spaniard handles their little hills they call "mountains".
I got my rental car today. It's so cute. They give you a brush to brush the snow off your coat before getting into the car. HAHAHAHAHA
I bought a broom today to clear the snow. It's cold here, but no colder than the North.
I'm sure they exaggerate. These Canadians like to tease.
I think the next six months will be so much fun!
Enviado: 2 Diciembre, 2016, 21:31
(translated)What are they worried about? We had our first snow today. The sun was shining and big fluffy snowflakes fell softly. It melted nearly immediately. It was disappointing actually.
I even caught some snowflakes on my tongue. I felt like a kid again.
Enviado: 4 Diciembre, 2016, 05:32
(translated)We had quite a storm here least night. A blanket of snow covered everything 3 or 4 centimeters thick. It was beautiful, like nature covering the land with a soft blanket.
I'm going outside to sweep the snow away, now. I'll shower and head into the office immediately after.
We'll talk soon.
Enviado: 4 Diciembre, 2016, 07:53
(translated) I'm so silly. I swept my driveway and walkway. None of my neighbors were doing the same. Now I know why!
Hahaha, I was just finishing my coffee when I heard a rumbling sound. It was the snow plow. It threw the snow right back in the driveway.
Now, my neighbors started shoveling. Oh well, we learn as we go.
I'm going back outside to shovel again. I may be a little late getting to the office. I'll call when I get there.
Enviado: 5 Diciembre, 2016, 20:11
(translated) I'm disappointed. The sun melted the beautiful blanket of snow that fell yesterday. I hope we'll get more snow before Christmas. I'm so looking forward to a white one.
Enviado: 12 Diciembre, 2016, 07:18
(translated)Snow, snow, snow!! Last night we got a glorious blanket of 15 centimeters of beautiful snow! Wow!
The broom wasn't helping much so I bought a shovel.
It was hard work, but I cleared the driveway and the walkway.
I think I'll get in great shape here! Just as I was finishing, the snow plow passed. He left a meter-high wall of packed snow blocking the driveway!
I really must remember to wait until he passes.
Enviado: 13 Diciembre, 2016, 22:18
(translated) OMG, the forecast is for another 20cm overnight! My neighbors are telling me to buy firewood in case the power goes out. Hahaha, where are we? Siberia?
They tease me.
Enviado: 14 Diciembre, 2016, 09:11
(translated) We didn’t get the 20cm promised. We got 27! I returned the sports car to the rental place and took out a 4X4.
This time, I waited for the plow to pass before shoveling.
The hijo de puta passed twice!!!
BTW: That cute little brush isn't to wipe your clothes. It's to brush the snow off the car!!!
I’ll be late this morning.
Enviado: 16 Diciembre, 2016, 04:00 via Android
(translated) It’s feezing in the house. Yesterday, people were talking about a nice storm expected. Turns out they were not saying “nice” but “ICE.”
Madre de dios! How is it fucking possible that it rains when it’s minus 8 fucking degrees Celsius outside????
Everything froze, power lines are down.
I wish I had bought that damned firewood!
The power should be back soon.
Enviado: 19 Diciembre, 2016, 09:11
(translated) The electricity is back just now, but we had had another 20cm of that white shit. More god-damned shoveling. Took all frigging day! That stupid snowplow came by three times.
I’m sure he hides and waits for me to finish before filling up the driveway! Bastardo doesn’t know who he’s messing with.
I tried to find a kid to shovel. They're too lazy the brats. They say they have to play hockey. I think they're lying.
I tried to buy a snowblower. They're sold out. Another shipment in due in March. That's stupid, who buys a snowblower in March? I think they're lying too.
Juan, can you contact Aaron Skogen? He works for Toro. I think they make snowblowers.
Order me a big one.
Enviado: 22 Diciembre, 2016, 19:11
(translated) I didn’t need to worry about missing a White Christmas. We got another damned 10cm last night. It was -22C!!
I got dressed warmly. I wore thermal underwear,tow pairs of jeans, snow pants, two sweaters, gloves covered with mittens, and two woolen hats. I tied two woolen scarves over my face to protect me from the wind.
Did I mention the wind is at 50kph? You would think it would blow the snow away. No, it brings more of that shit!
By the time I was ready, I had to use the bathroom. Do you know how long it takes to remove thermal underwear, two pairs of jeans, snow pants, two sweaters, gloves covered with mittens, two woolen hats, and two woolen scarves?
I barely made it in time!
By the time I got dressed again, I was too tired to shovel.
I’m going to bed.
Enviado: 24 Diciembre, 2016, 21:22
(translated) Another 18cm last night. The snowplow packed it in so hard I broke my shovel. If I ever catch that son of a bitch, I’ll drag him from his truck by the hair! Then I'll bury him with my broken shovel. Then I'll park his snowplow on his head!
I’m sure he hides around the corner waiting for me to finish shoveling. Then he roars by at 200kph to ruin everything I did.
My neighbors think I exaggerate. I think maybe they are in league with the plow driver.
If they want war . . .
Enviado: 25 Diciembre, 2016, 09:12
(translated) Feliz Navidad?? Who cares!
The thought of shoveling makes me want to throw up. My back is killing me. I don’t think I will ever walk fully upright again.
The snowplow driver stopped by to wish me “Merry Christmas.”
I think he just wanted a cash gift.
I hit him over the head with my new shovel.
I broke that one too.
Enviado: 29 Diciembre, 2016, 22:18
(translated) No snow for four days. My back is starting to feel better. I'm nearly able to walk prperly again. Maybe the worst is behind us?
Enviado: 31 Diciembre, 2016, 22:32
(translated) I spoke too soon. Another 20cm fell today. I just came in from shoveling. I tried to order a pizza. They said it was too late.
I'll eat toast for supper.
My neighbor told me I need to shovel the snow from the roof. He says the snow load may cave it in.
Does he think I’m stupid!!!???
Enough with the Big Bad Winter jokes!
Enough of teasing the Spaniard!
These Canadians are starting to annoy me.
Enviado: 1 Enero, 2017, 14:10
(translated) The roof caved in. I do not wish to discuss it further
Sent: January 2, 2017, 15:27
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