Saturday, October 13, 2007
M O N T R E A L
I just got back from Montreal where I spent two weeks visiting Megan who recently moved there because its fashionable to do so. Not only is it fashionable, but it's also economical, rent is cheap, and you can eat for free any day of the week at the Peoples Potato, where they let you cut in line if you bring your own tupperware dish. Also, Megan is currently living large off of Concordia bursaries (take that anyone who thinks you have to be a francophone to get free money in Quebec) so if it wasn't for buying booze, it would more or less be free to live there. In fact, if you made your own booze, you'd actually be making money. Like any third world country, Montreal has a high unemployment rate, and major problems with their infrastructure, but the hassles are well worth dealing with as you soak up the enchanting atmosphere and enjoy the colorful street life.They take thier night life very seriously in Montreal, and with a bar on every corner, and more live bands than you can shake a drum stick at, going out to party is an obligatory part of the experience. This Liquor store perfectly illustrates my point. Thats right, it looks like some sort of train station or town hall or something, Infact I was going to write about how in Montreal they've found creative new uses for a lot of old buildings and so on, but it turns out the place was built to be a liquor store (Note that its the nicest building in the neighborhood). Now a lot of people will tell you to go party on St. Laurent, or to have a coffee in little Italy, or this and that, but the truth is the best time to be had in Montreal is feeding the raccoons at the lookout point in the park. Go at dusk, bring Cheetos.
This being the first time I've been out east in a while, naturally I was anxious to do all those things you can't do west of the Rockies, and no, I don't mean eating putine, you can get that in vancouver too, what I mean is catching a catfish. Unfortunately it rained on that little adventure, the St. Lawrence did however produce on one of the other aquatic vertebrates I had hoped to encounter which was this little baby snapping turtle. Too cute for soup, we realesed the lucky little guy unharmed, although I did reconsider it later. Although Montreal doesn't have as much money floating around as we do here in the west, at least the money they do have seems to be going to some of the right places. In Vancouver all the money gets turned into glass towers and hideous condo developments. In Montreal they have things like the Canadian Centre for Architecture, and the Musee de beaux Art, and everyone just lives in regular houses.
In Vancouver people drive their Bentley to go pick up their miniature short haired dachshund from the pet pedicureist down the street. In Montreal people go to the bar at night. Different values. Incidentally, my friends Colin and Cabiri also just moved to Montreal (its fashionable), and while I was there Colin let me paint his portrait.
Email me for a cute Raccoons of Montreal photo album you can use as a screen saver.
thats all for now.