I have not been on holiday for ages and ages.

I mean, a real holiday. To somewhere exotic, abroad. You know when you are abroad because they have separate money and do things differently at breakfast time. I went to Fakenham market the other week, but aside from that I have missed the thrill of adventure.

But with the global financial crisis and climate change, it is clear that it is no longer possible for a conscientious Westerner to take a simple holiday. ‘Philantholidays’ are now very popular in metropolitan circles, combining travel and relaxation with doing some good for the indigenous population.

Around Quebec. With Pants.

For the next three weeks or so, I shall be exploring part of Canada with the LTLP and Toddler. I shall also be taking all my old pants that the LTLP has been having a go at me for ages to get rid of, wearing them for one last time, and then leaving them for anybody who wants them. They are good pants, well-looked after and comfortable, and my hope is that they will find a good home amongst the Quebeccis.

I did this when I travelled round New Zealand and, although I received no actual feedback from pants recipients, I am sure that they brought someone, somewhere some relief. Recycling is not some ‘middle class’ option in today’s society – it is a duty for all of us. Having purchased some new pants, I have once more fallen into the trap of the consumer society – and this is one way of giving something back.

I will be doing my pants relief mission merely for the simple pleasure of charity. I do not seek or expect a book deal, although it strikes me that it would make an ideal paperback in the Dave Gorman/Tony Hawks vein, probably retailing at £7.99 and pushed heavily in the 3 for 2 promotions.

Writer away, due to pants project (above); competition.

The world changed post-9/11, and people do not want guest blogging. Private Secret Diary™ will resume next month. In the meantime, I will be launching a small competition from which readers can win something. That will keep things interesting.

Having struggled to think of a good idea for a competition, I have settled on this. The winner will be the reader who can think of the best idea for a competition, and come up with the most suitable prize. You will need to explain why your idea for competition/prize is the best. The entry judged the best/most inventive/funniest etc will win a prize of my choosing.

How to enter; unneccessary sub-heading for typographic reasons.

I am closing comments this evening, as there are nutters on the Internet. So you must enter via the Bizarre Appreciation Society on Facebook.

With respect to all its members, who are mad, the discussion forums have been a bit moribund on there recently, and I have been disappointed in the lack of society merchandise/club trips/special events/organised guest speakers on there. So it would be good to gee it on a bit.

As I am too dignified to join my own Appreciation Society, or even to publicise its existence, the first person to get over there will have to set up a discussion, or whatever you do in these things.

Terms and conditions

The judge’s decision (me) is final. If you post here under a secret name but are on facebook under a normal name then do not worry as I will not know your secret name/normal name link and would not tell anyone if I did. If you are not on Facebook then you should join, it is really good and I reckon will be big in the future – get a grandchild to help you set up an account if needed. Prize will be posted anywhere in the world, from the Post Office. Winners agree to take part in any publicity material that may ensue from press interest etc. Writers of Private Secret Diary (me) are not eligible.

Around Quebec. With Pants.

On my return I shall, of course, provide incisive travelogue about my experiences. From Norfolk to Canada – one of the world’s great journeys. Who will I meet? How will I cope with a simpler pace of life?

As I type, the Jehovah’s Witnesses have just called. It is time to leave the country. Quebec – here we come. So goodbye for a bit… or should I say ‘auf wiedersehen’…?

18 thoughts on “Around Quebec. With Pants.

  1. Debster says:

    But I thought you said comments were turned off?

  2. kermit says:

    sorry didn’t read the whole thing since my excitement boiled over when i saw the word “quebec” and that you were coming [insert obligatory multiple exclamation points here]

    it’s a shame you couldn’t make it to the 400th anniversary celebration this summer. but the colonists nonetheless are glad you’re coming and will welcome you.

    slight warning: guinness tastes a bit different here and “beer” is a term that is applied very loosely in quebec.

  3. Pat says:

    Byesy bye then. I’m not joining Face book – even for you and you are not the only one who doesn’t travel far and wide anymore. I feel a bit sulky but my natural good nature is asserting itself so I’ll wish you Godspeed and a safe return. Missing you already 🙁

  4. scribbles08 says:

    Yep, nope, no, niet! Not joining facebook either. Sorry. Have fun in Quebec, see ya l8r. Scribble.

  5. zed says:

    Bon voyage and enjoy the holiday. Is Quebec exotic? Their French is a hoot!

  6. I am glad you’re getting a break from all that work you’ve been doing, Jonny. I was becoming concerned. How could any ordinary mortal keep up with the pace of such a stressful and breakneck existence. And you are so very, very ordinary…

    Alas, Quebeccis is not the correct term for the denizens of Francophone Canada. As they’re a bit prickly about matters linguistic it’s important to get these things right. The word you are looking for is connard. Just keep saying Je sais que vous etes tous connards! and all will be well. Enjoy your trip! Send photos! Especially of their charming gallic Emergency Room, and the quaint little machine they use to pump your pants out of your stomach.

  7. Peter says:

    The first Quebec is in County Durham, England. Still there. As kids we used to play on the swings. Have a great holiday.

  8. Snowpea says:

    Well, if you want to meet a Real Native of Quebec, when you are in Montreal, let me know. I’d be curious to hear about your experiences of greeting us natives with ‘Vous êtes tous des connards’. 😀 I might even have suggestions of things to see and do in La Belle Province.

    Quebecii sounds pretty good. I may have to borrow that!

  9. Rachel says:

    Darling Jonny, have a wonderful holiday. I am sure adventures with pants in Quebec will have you back in Norfolk all awash with testosterone.

    I would enter the contest but I forgot my facebook password shortly after signing up, and can’t be arsed getting it sorted.

  10. Diana says:

    “au revoir” might be more appropriate than “auf wiedersehen” in the circumstances. Don’t try “vous êtes tous des connards”!

    Have a super holiday and good luck with the pants =D

  11. AndyB says:

    Innit bloody fair, eh?
    I make you my homepage because Anna’s buggering off to Frisco, and you sod off for three weeks.
    I’ll have to do work first thing in the morning now!!!

  12. carnalis says:

    Around Quebec. In pants.

    Do you mean pants .. as in pants (boys’ knickers), like we say in this country, or pants (long legs) as they do in quebec? I am in agonies of expectation over the possible confusions of such language disparity.

  13. guyana gyal says:

    Well, this should give me time to catch up on previous posts.

    Moi? Fazebook? Nah.

    Oh…remember to keep your pants on to return home with.

  14. Richard says:

    Are you sure the colonials are equipped to cope with this level of pants based metro-sophistication? I do hope they are clean. Your pants, I mean.

  15. plunkett says:

    If you’re anything like me those pants won’t be useful for long anyway. Since moving to Quebec a month ago and losing all self control in the face of piles of new and exciting restaurants, I am beginning to suspect that my clothes actually aren’t magically shrinking.

  16. Steve says:

    Sorry Jonny, I won’t be taking part in the competition….. just in case the prize is a pair of pants.
    Have a great time.
    See you soon, figuratively speaking.

  17. JonnyB says:

    Natalie is in the lead!!!

    But she is the only one who has entered. And lives in Australia, where postage is expensive. Damn her.

    See you all next month…

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