Geography Matters

Particularly, knowing your geography and the area of interest matters.

When I made the move from Saskatchewan to Ontario, my daily area of interest changed. I was no longer interested in the bus routes that would take me from downtown Regina to the Southland mall, nor was I all that interested in the No 1 highway that streches between Moose Jaw and Regina. I was unlikely to need knowledge of either of these and so, they have been mostly forgotten.

(This is also obvious when I try to update Moose Jaw in OpenStreetMap, I don’tremember which street comes after which street anymore.)

And when I was going across the northern parts of Ontario, I knew that there was a three hour gap between LongLac and Hearst, so that we could get gas. I know there is a similar one on the southern route, but that’s less important so I don’t remember it.

Now, my daily area of interest includes the city of Ottawa and of the surrounding area. This might be a surprise to some of you, as I don’t have a car, but my memory would allow me to go back to places people (or busses) drive me with little problems.

If you arrived at the Ottawa airport, wanted to go to to T&T and then downtown to a hotel and then Gatineau park, I could direct you, without a problem.

So getting asked about specific shopping centres in Ottawa and which ones held what, I realized that I had been to the majority of them. Stittsville, Kanata, Gloucester, St Laurent, Carlingwood, Rideau and smaller places like College Square are all places that I’ve been to, although maybe not frequented. I have been asked about 8 shopping centers in Ottawa specifically. The one the person assumed I would know is up the street from where I live. I have walked by this center but have never been into it, so it’s a bit harder for me to say what it’s like.

What surprises me more, is that I have been to the ones on the other sides of the city, Gloucester and College Square are two that come to mind, along side of the place that has T&T in it. College Square has been in my area of interest since I moved to Ottawa, as it is directly beside Algonquin College. T&T has come to my mind lately as the large chinese store is quite entertaining for me to wander through and find weird items not usually for sale in Canada. Gloucester is on the other side of town from both of these, but in the area of interest of my boyfriend, so we end up going there sometimes.

So why have I not been to the place up the street from me? Partially is because it is part of the street of coffee shops and restaurants and there is only so much time to try any of them. Partially is because I have only lived in my current apartment for 7 or 8 weeks. I haven’t been able to wander around my area as much as I wanted to yet, so the area is still quite new to me.

I just am rather amused at what would be my obvious area of interest and what my actual area of interest is. Now I suppose the next thing to do is to make maps of these areas to show you, eh?

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