Sunday, July 1, 2012

Good Vibes in Montreal

Okay, we officially love Montreal. What a cool city. It’s got some of the big city feel that you’ll find in New York, though not as angry, intense, dirty, or noisy. Sure, sometimes you want the insanity that is New York, I know I did at one point in my life, but now, I find a city like Montreal more manageable and fun. Though New York is a big melting pot of culture, there is a lot of anger and discontent that underlies the multiculturalism. As much as there is a huge mix of people in NYC, all is not harmonious.

Montreal definitely has more of the European feel. Maybe it’s because it just doesn’t have the New York edge, or maybe they’re more comfortable with foreigners. Whatever be the case, I felt much more relaxed in Montreal, and not as targeted as a tourist and outsider. We ended up exploring a lot more the city than we had the last time we visited. We wandered into several ethnic neighborhoods, all on foot, tried a variety of foods, and of course visited the home of the Montreal Canadiens. It would have been amazing to have gone to a game. That way, the fans would have been swearing in French, so the kids wouldn’t understand.

The last time I had been to Montreal, which was before the kids were born, we stayed in the old section, which was really nice. We went back this time around, and it really struck me that that part of the city is really designed for tourists. You get all the generic bistros selling crepes with the attractive host/hostess competing to lure people in and the kitschy shops selling the same tacky and somewhat tasteless stuff. Who buys this stuff?

Actually, we do! N decided to buy hockey pucks for all the major cities that have teams, and Montreal is the Mecca of all things hockey. A is also getting into jewelry, so she got some earrings, so I can’t really criticize, can I? That won’t stop me from being a hypocrite, of course.

All in all, we had a great time walking around the city, trying different kinds of foods that you can’t find in Vermont, which pretty much means everything that isn’t pizza and burgers, and just had a great time. I love that city, and it’s an easy trip to a place where we could practice our French. Plus, if we time it right, we could catch a hockey game. Enough said.

Until the next time, thanks for reading, and thanks to Mohammad Abtahi for the pic.

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