Hotel Quarantine - Montreal airport.

View from my quarantine hotel

 I am returned from a wonderful trip to see my 94-year-old mum and now must quarantine in a hotel at Montreal airport. She hadn't been out of her care home for 15 months and this was the first time I could take her out. So I bit the bullet, paid for all the tests and hotels and we had two weeks of daily outings, mostly in beautiful sunshine around the Northumbrian countryside in North-East England. It could not have been better.

No-one can tell you exactly when you will be released from hotel quarantine - it all depends on how soon you get back results from your covid test. I ask immigration officer "How long until the test result"? 

"It could be as soon as tonight," he says. I get excited.

Covid testing at airport

I started travelling yesterday morning from Newcastle via Paris to Montreal. After 10 hours of flying we landed in a lightning storm and so had to wait around an hour to get our luggage back. Then we all queued for our covid tests and I got a free cab to the Quality Inns and Suites on Herron Road. (paid by the government I assume as I am on an official Government hotel quarantine 3 night package costing $1193.16.) You can't just book any hotel - it must be Government approved.

I wonder if Justin Trudeau checked the coffee maker in this one as it doesn't work, just boils away and no hot water touches the coffee grounds.

Just desperate to fall into bed, I had to fill out a form on what I wanted to eat for the next day. I ask the manager what is the average wait for a covid test here? "Two days," he replies. Bummer.

When I signed up for this trip I always thought 3 nights in a Canadian hotel would be fine. I managed five days in the English hotel no problem at the beginning. But there's something really depressing about being desperate for your own bed and instead staying in an impersonal hotel on the highway. Don't get me wrong - it's all been worth it - so great to see my mum. Also I respect the Government for trying to protect people from covid. But you didn't see the vegetarian wrap I was presented with last night on arrival. 

I'm told I must ring reception and be accompanied by a security guard for my three 15 minute fresh air breaks. The good news is my window opens in this room. The bad news is I'm on a highway.

Sunrise from my quarantine hotel

As regular readers know I live in the woods in the summer and so having to be in a lower-end hotel room feels a lot more risky to me than being in the woods. How many passengers have been through this hotel ? I long for the lake and the forest. Soon I will be reunited with my husband, cat and garden. I will be planting squashes, tending to my tomatoes and checking on my flower seedlings.

Me and my mum. The reason I'm in quarantine.

Meanwhile I must quarantine for 14 days (hopefully just one of them here) and take a test on day eight at home (kit provided on landing). I know there's pressure on the Canadian government to drop the hotel quarantine. Many are dodging it by flying to the States and driving over the border. How I envy them. Others are paying the fine rather than stay in a hotel. They just raised the fine to $5000. I'm told no-one has been fined in Quebec but I don't want to be the first one so here I am. The sun is shining and only 90 minutes to wait for breakfast. I will take a shower, get dressed and maybe hang out with my security guard. Wish me luck.


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