Getting home after the Canadian Grand Prix is never easy. If you cannot get out on Sunday night you are stuck until Monday night – unless you go by way of New York or Toronto, famous still for bring an awful airport. Anyway, a lot of F1 folk like stay on in Montreal to party, or riot, or both. We left the track after GP+ was put to bed, about five hours after the race. The sun was going down and the sky over the rowing basin was the kind of colour that tells shepherds that tomorrow they can wear shorts.
The sad news was that my Sunday night was not one long party. I spent the evening typing in my hotel room, having 10-minute cat naps now and then, when the screen began to blur. This is the non-glamorous part of this life, battering keyboards until you drop, when everyone is hard a-partying.
I finished everything at about 11.30 this morning, which left just enough time for a shower before the hotel threw us out. With nothing much else to do, and no energy left, it was a good moment for a big lazy lunch. Everyone tends to hang out in the city, so if you walk the streets you always meet someone you know. After lunch I went fur hat shopping for a friend. Fur is not my thing, but I often find myself on shopping missions for others. The bad news was that raccoon is out of fashion these days. The fur trade, in any case, is a shadow of the industry on which Canada was built. There’s now just a small enclave of traders, not far from the Hudson Bay Company department store.
With nothing much to do and a car to play with, I volunteered to take my colleagues out to the airport and then pottered about, discovering outlying parts of the city: Pierrefonds, Senneville, Baie d’Urfe and Pointe Claire. All rather delightful. I wondered what they are like in the winter and decided that, in a perfect world, my bolt hole should be in a warm place…
Now, I’m in the bar in the terminal at Dorval. Half the paddock is here. Jenson Button is across the way, drinking mineral water. I’m on Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc, so life is not bad at all. The plan is to take an overdose of sleep and then awake in Paris.
Tough life, isn’t it?