Canotek Road Blues


“Fuck,” Stephen said to himself as he stared at the computer screen. Fifteen out of twenty meant he’d failed again…by a single point. After waiting in line for hours behind the other peons at the Driving Test Facility located in the Canotek area in eastern Ottawa, Ontario. For the second time in about an hour, Stephen failed the second half of the damned written test. He’d worried so much about the signs that he overlooked the rules of the road, and now he was paying the price…sixteen bucks per attempt.

“Mr. Stephen, how did you do?” asked the nerdy, bespectacled young white woman sitting at the desk right next to the exam room. Stephen got up, grabbed his backpack and exited the facility. He’d never failed an exam like this. Hell, he’d aced the LSAT without much prep and graduated from Carleton University with honors. How could the Ontario written driving test kick his ass? Dammit, this sucks.

“I’m out of here,” Stephen said to no one in particular as he got the hell out of the driving test center. He made a beeline for the parking lot, and ran up the hill. He grabbed the first OC Transpo bus he saw, and hurried out of there. I’m such a loser, Stephen thought dourly. He’d seen various folks walk out with their new temporary licences, all proud and shit, and he felt envious. Why couldn’t he be so lucky?

Stephen shook his head as he thought of the sacrifices he’d made just to get to the test center. Yesterday, he’d come on his day off, and aced the first half of the test, the one having to do with road signs, while missing the mark on the second half, the one having to do with road rules. To Stephen, a lifelong passenger who dreamed of driving, cars were a mysterious lot and the open road was as unpredictable as a storm-tossed sea. Still, a man must move forward, right?

Stephen woke up at six o’clock on that fateful morning, grabbed the bus and then hiked on foot to get to the driving test center. He’d studied the night before and done the practice tests online. What the fuck did those damn Canadian DMV people want from him? Stephen eskişehir escort remembered feeling amazed when the bozos working there told him that they only served people born between certain dates due to Covid restrictions. Canadian obstructionism at its best. Makes me miss Boston, Stephen thought sadly.

Stephen rode the bus in silence, and got off downtown. He needed to sit down somewhere and recoup. With Covid going strong and so many damn Canadians acting scared, what with their masks and everything, the tall, burly and dark-skinned Haitian brother knew that his chances of finding an open restaurant were less than optimal. Well, an open restaurant that allowed clients to sit down and eat instead of being terrified of fucking Covid would be nice. Just to be safe, Stephen went to the Rideau shopping center and got himself some Chinese food. When in doubt, stick with the Chinese…

Walking through the Rideau shopping center after his repast, Stephen saw the usual suspects. Middle-aged white dudes and their Asian girlfriends. Young white women hanging out with brown guys. The obligatory black man with the chubby white girlfriend. The effeminate gay male with the gorgeous but annoying female friend who stares longingly at the young guys walking by, talking loud and acting macho. The lonely people walking from store to store, browsing and buying nada. Nothing out of the ordinary.

“No thanks,” Stephen mumbled as a tall, skinny white dude with a staring problem tried to make eye contact with him. Translation? Mr. Stare is into dudes, senses something about Stephen, and wonders if he’s down for some fun. Stephen ignores the bozo and pointedly stares at the ass of a curvy Hijabi gal who is bending over to tie her shoelaces. If there’s anything dudes who only like dudes don’t like it’s men who swing both ways. Surprised, and disgusted, Mr. Stare walks away, and Stephen smiles. Works every time…

Stephen is forthrightly bisexual, and prefers women, since the dudes in the City of Ottawa escort eskişehir tend to be effeminate, dull, boring, weird, and prone to stalking. Whatever happened to masculine men who are sexually fluid and don’t have a staring problem? Maybe they all left the City of Ottawa, to Stephen’s everlasting chagrin. One does what one can where one happens to be, that’s how Stephen sees it.

The ladies of Ottawa definitely light Stephen’s fire, well, at least some of them do. The local women tend to be flaky as fuck, but some of them are really fun in bed, so Stephen doesn’t mind the bullshit that some of them throw his way. They make a brother work to get the pussy, and that’s alright. Stephen saw a tall, dark-skinned, curvy and big-bottomed young black woman walk by, clad in a red tank top and yoga pants. Now that’s what I call booty, Stephen thought, almost salivating.

Stephen was about to approach the African Goddess when he felt an unpleasant frisson in his chest. A skinny white dude with a buzz cut who definitely has some sugar in his tank walked up to the African Goddess and kissed her on the lips. Hand in hand, the two of them headed toward Marc’s Store, leaving Stephen standing there, flabbergasted…or something. This sister probably wouldn’t date a bisexual brother but she’s with a white dude who likes dick more than she does, Stephen thought, disgusted.

Stephen continued walking, a bit perplexed by his internal reaction to what he’d just seen. Must the sight of a black woman with a white dude disturb black men? Not in the least, as far as Stephen is concerned. The tall, burly Haitian brother is a citizen of the world and has nothing against interracial relationships. In the past, Stephen has had sex with several white ladies. He has fond memories of Amy, a curvy, sexy blonde gal whom he hooked up with a while ago, and there’s of course Shira, the lady who introduced Stephen to the joys of female domination and pegging. The brother has nothing against the swirl, for real…

“Hey eskişehir escort bayan stranger,” came a sultry female voice, and Stephen turned around and saw…her. Renee, the curvy, dark-haired, pale-skinned young French Canadian woman whom he met at work two weeks ago. Renee, with the enchanting smile and the big smile…and even bigger ass. Samuel grinned and went over to greet the lady. Renee stood there, decked out all in black, plus pointy boots. Looking Renee up and down, Stephen smiled. This ought to be good…

“Bon apres midi mademoiselle,” Stephen said, and Renee licked her lips, then held out her hand, which he shook. Hmm, just like that, Stephen forgot all about his problems. He did not remember how he and Renee ended up at the food court, but he did remember treating her to some nice lamb meat as the two of them sat down and bantered. By the time Stephen and Renee finished their little chat and meal, the mall was closing and security was politely but firmly encouraging patrons to leave.

“I had fun, monsieur, we should do this again sometime,” Renee said to Stephen, as they exited the mall together. Ever the gentleman, Stephen called an Uber, and held the door for Renee when the car came. Renee grinned and batted Stephen’s hand away when he tried to shake hers, and instead she kissed him. A two-second peck on the lips. Stephen froze, and smiled nervously, and Renee laughed and winked at him. He stood there, scratching his head as she took off. What an afternoon…

“To many more days like this one,” Stephen said to himself as he lay in bed that night, tired as can be. The life of a thirty-something black man in Ottawa is not easy. Stephen thought about the events of the day. He’d lost some due to having taken a day off of work for the ultimately unsuccessful attempt at the written driving test. Still, the Haitian brother did not feel like a total loser. Thank heaven for the lovely Renee.

There is something about the lovely Renee and Stephen wants to discover the French Canadian cutie’s secrets. She is definitely a breath of fresh air. Coquine femme, Stephen thought, wryly amused. Stephen wouldn’t mind taking the lovely lady out for a good time, assuming she reciprocates his interest, of course. Hell, he’d retake the test, ace it, and take Renee for a ride on his future car. Feeling hopeful about tomorrow for the first time in ages, Stephen drifted off to sleep.