Friday, February 11, 2011

Montreal Trip

My sister and I travelled to Montreal, Quebec on December 9, 2010. We left the night before due to weather (freezing rain we had to drive through-bless her for driving!). Flying was interesting. I was a bit nervous the first flight, but it was fine by the time we returned.

We had a brief stop over in Toronto, Ontario, then we arrived in Montreal at 2:30pm. We took a cab to our hotel, dropped off our bags in the room then took off on foot to find the Bell Centre. Thankfully it was only a couple blocks away. We went inside and there were already people waiting. The concert didn't start until 8pm!
Once we were done looking around there, we walked to Catherine Street. Lots of stores! We walked around for a while. We stopped at the Crocs store. Who know there were so many styles? We went looking for the underground city, but didn't find it. We did find an information centre. The man was super helpful. He gave us a map and showed us where to go, what things to see in the area, and how to use the metro to get over to Old Montreal.

We took the info and went to get something to eat. As we sat waiting for our food, it started to get dark. My daughter called my cell phone. I asked what she was doing - walking home from school! I was sure it had to be 6pm at least. It was only 4:30 in Montreal (3:30 in Moose Jaw). Wow! We had done so much and it was only afternoon. And it was getting dark!

We went back to the hotel and got ready. We left around 7:30 pm for the concert. We saw the crazy long line up when we arrived and decided to get a drink while we waited. When we got back at 7:45 the line was all the way down the block both ways - at least twice as long as before.

The concert was great (see my other post). I would see them again in a heartbeat. I hope they do comeback again sometime.

The next morning we were on our way at 10 am. We took the metro over to Place de arms and went to look around Old Montreal.

First stop - Starbucks. We sat for a few minutes then we were off. The architecture is beautiful. We quickly came upon Notre dame church. We decided to go in on our way back. We walked down one street where we saw city hall. It had a covering over where workers were working on it. The covering looked like the building was supposed to. I thought it was quite interesting.

We walked a few blocks more. Basically no one else was around. Very quiet, very peaceful. At one point a man came walking towards us. As we drew near, I looked at him and said my sister's name. As we passed the man, Cathy said "That was him." I said " I know it was him." We stood dumbfounded and didn't know what to do. The keyboardist from Rammstein, Flake, had just walked inches away from us. By the time we decided we had to talk to him, he was quite a distance away. We followed him for a few blocks but lost him at the corner where McDonalds was as the light took forever to turn and we couldn't see which way he went. Oh, well, we missed our chance to talk to him, but at least we do have a bit of story to tell.

We walked around checking out the buildings and the St. Lawrence. We eventually made our way to Montreal Poutine. What better place to try authentic poutine than there. It was very good!

We made our way to the church. Words and pictures can't even come close to letting you know what it is like inside. So much detail! If you are ever in Montreal, be sure to check it out.
We went to take the metro to find the underground city - one stop away. We walked and looked for about an hour. I am not patient and I became quite angry. My wonderful sister kept it together and we kept pressing on. Eventually a woman on the street pointed us in the right direction.
We shopped for quite sometime. I eventually started to feel ill so we started back to the hotel. We stopped for supper on our way at a Mexican restaurant. We had a ton of food for a small price and the atmosphere was wonderful. I just wish I could remember the name of it.
After supper we made our way back to the hotel. We both got into pjs and were ready for bed. Saddly it was only 6pm. We had walked all day and deserved the rest. We watched Fred Claus on TV.
The next day we did a little shopping before checkout. Then we went to the airport and hung out for a bit before our plane left. We decided to eat lunch at a restaurant there. My sister had wanted to try a Montreal smoked meat sandwich while in Montreal. Thankfully they had one one the menu.
With my meal I ordered a coffee with Baileys. I always wanted to try a properly mixed one. It was pretty good. Unfortunately I forgot to check the price before ordering. I was surprised to see the $8.99 charge on my bill. Oh, well. I was on vacation. And it was good.
We arrived home quite late that night. I am very glad we went.
Thank you, Cathy, for making it possible!

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