Sunday night was spent in Sudbury, where I worked 41 years ago as a young bartender, fresh out of a two-week bartender’s course in Toronto where I learned to mix more than a hundred different cocktails, about ten of which I would actually have to know and make on the job.
The school placed me at the Holiday Inn, and when the bar manager introduced me to the beer dispensers and told me to pour a couple, I did, only I was sort of looking around as I did it and realized the glass was upside down.
Sudbury is where I watched the 1972 Canada-Russia Summit Series.
Sudbury is also where I got fired from my bartender’s job after a carload of Orillia friends came up to visit me, got a room, had a big party in which I joined in, and when the Italian hotel manager and the security guy knocked on the door, one of my friends answered it and shouted, “Holy #%^$, it’s the Mafia.”
So I was fired for that bit of nonsense, got on at the Holiday Inn in Barrie for awhile, and eventually called my boss in Sudbury and he hired me back, which made me happy because I loved Sudbury and rarely compared it to the moon’s surface like so many do.
Driving in last night, it took me a long time to get my bearings. Stores are different. Some streets have different names now. I went to see my old Holiday Inn and it’s now called the Radisson, in the Rainbow Centre, which was called the City Centre. On a street now called something else but was once called Notre Dame.
Why do things have to change? It’s only been 41 years. Why can’t they leave things alone?
But the Sudbury Arena, home of the Wolves, is still there and looking good.