montreal

Montreal: Leaving

At the airport now; we have a special room to wait in since we’re flying into National. They wil search our carry-ons and everything. It’s not open yet. It’s a little bit strange, I think — since there was hardle that much security going out of National. What is nice is that we were able to go through customs on this side of things.

Montreal: Olympic Park and Botanical Gardens

Olympic Park and the Botanical Gardens were really great.

We took a ride up the tower where we have a great view of the entire island.

I liked the Chinese and the Japanese gardens more than I expected to.

And then we went to an Expos game. It was a lot of fun, and a good game to boot — the Expos won in 12 innings. I’ll feel a little bit bad for the fans here — few as they are — if the team leaves. The stadium is most definitely OLD, but the seats are good noisemakers. Also, they served beer the entire game!

Montreal: Dinner

Last night we had the most wonderful dinner at Chez la Mere Michel. We were lucky in that they had a table for us since we didnt have a reservation. We were tucked away in the smoking section. For a while, the rest of the restaurant seemed empt, it looked like they just hid all the Americans in the back! At the table across from us sat two women in their 40s. They drank a lot of wine. By the glass, too — thw would have been better off ordering two bottles — a white & a red. One stumbled on her way out. At the table next to us was an “interesting” couple from South Carolina. Brendan’s theory about old southerners being the ones who travel still holds. She inspected the art — touching it – and he was a little bit gruff with the waiter. I have to say, we were the waiter’s favorites. She swiped an ash tray saying, “I collect,” and shrugging. Shortly after she slipped it in her pocket, the waiter walked in the room. I thought perhaps he caught her. That would have been so funny. The food was so nice, so good. I had a souffle du fromage wih Swiss cheese and a light, perfectly flaky pastry, and the coq au vin which just fell off the bone and was very tasty. Bren had the filet and a strawberry dessert that was so light and so delicious. We were so exhausted when we got back (at about 9:30) that we were in bed, asleep at 10 or 10:30. Soon we’re leaving for Parc Olympique.

Montreal: A movie, shopping and Old Montreal

First, the movie yesterday was Colombian, not Venezuelan. It was pretty funny. There were even parts where I didn’t need the subtitles. This morning we had to rush to breakfast. The alarm didn’t go off, but luckily, I actually woke up — at 7:25 — just five minutes before we were suppposed to be there. The movie this morning was so sad. The whole thing was so terribly sad. Even Brendan said he wanted to cry for about 3/4 of the movie.

Then we shopped a little. Last night we stopped in Bedo — I want to know if they have any shops in the states – and toda several others. Most noteably, Mexx and Zara. I’m going to have to get myself to the Zara in Georgeton. I fell completely in love with the store.

Then we spent the rest of the afternoon in vieux (old) Montreal. The metro here is very cheap, but also uncomfortable. It saved us a lot of walking, though. First we saw the Basilique Notre-Dame. I expected it to be completely beautiful, and it exceeded my expectations. We also went to the Museum of Archaeology and History and saw the first foundations of the city. And a lot more walking. We’re going to try and find a French restaurant in walking distance tonight. Tomorrow to the Olympic Park, Botanical Gardens and maybe an Expos game. May as well check them out before they come down our way to stay!

Montreal: Walking, walking and walking

Blister on the first day: never good. We did a whole lot of walking today. First it was to the Basilique Cathedrale Marie-Reine-du-Monde which was very beautiful. Then it was down St-Catherine to the cinema to but tickets for the two film festival movies that we wanted to see. [tonight it’s the VenezuelanColombian El Carro and tomorrow moring the Irish Holy Cross — something for each of us].

Next we walked to the McGill campus and then up the “mountain” to the Parc du Mont-Royal, where we got a great view of the city. It was very beautiful, but it was really tiring.

But we weren’t done. Nope. We grabbed some lunch and then went to the Musee des Beaux-Arts de Montreal. They had a little bit of everything. Some of the more modern pieces — a chandelier that was bare, with the crystals neatly on the floor — were better than others — black canvasses. There were also some really interesting decorative arts pieces: charis, tables, vases, teapots etc.

Our room, excuse me, our suite, is so very nice. Down pillows and comforter, a little table (at which I am currently sitting), a sofa, a CD player, whirlpool tub, exposed brick, wood floor, ceramic tile in the bathroom, a kitchen to use with dishes and everything. It’s probably one of the nices places I’ve ever stayed.

Montreal: Arrival

[NOTE: written by hand and transcibed later, after we got home.]

Sitting, waiting for the plane to arrive is never very exciting. I’ve already made my way through 402 pages of a magazine & we still have just over an hour until the plane should get here. It’s going to be a tiny little plane, to; there are only 50 seats. We’re in row 5… I was just re-reading about our flight on the 8-seater in Ireland. I’m not too nervous, I’m just worried about feeling nauseated from the air pressure.

Things at the airport are considerably easier than I expected. It’s not too crowded — although it is a Thursday — and the line at security wasn’t terrible, either. The TSA agents were extra-interested in the batteries for the camcorder. What is it with DHS & video cameras?

I am so ready to get out of town. Work has been getting me down lately. I thought the humidity would be worse here this summer. We picked Montreal in September not only because it’s our anniversary the 8th and my birthday a week ago, but also because we figured that we’d be sick of the sticky weather. Maybe we’ll at least miss any hurrican Frances remnants that come this way.

This plane is so tiny. Walking on the tarmac is always good. We got to see our bag get loaded and everything. It’s quite comforting to know that well have clean clothes for the weekend. Of course, we’ll have to get off the runway first!

In the air now. Not high enough for my head to be terribly hapy. Ears are going nuts, too. I’m sure Bren’s are worse, though.

I’m not a big fan of not knowing exactly where we are. I love the gadgets on the big new planes that show a map & the plane movement. If I had to guess it’d be PA or NY.

Holy moly. The line at customs was two hours long. It was crazy. We landed at about seven, seven thirty, but didn’t get out until almost 9:20! A line is a line, thought. There isn’t much that can be done.

Disclaimer.

Brendan joined the party on January 2, 2004. He's cool now.

Jessica has never been cool. She is OK with that.

And just so everyone is clear, what we say here is not endorsed by either of our employers.