Yes, Montreal was the site of last weekend’s quick French fix. The only reason I haven’t packed up my bags and moved there yet to revel in the cute Quebecois accent and feast upon savory crepes and Belgian fries with mayo (we all have our weaknesses!) while visiting beautiful blue basilicas is because I am a coward.
I am afraid of living in a place where it is so cold that I would have to wear tights under my jeans for more than 6 months per year. I did that for 4 or even 5 months while occasionally braving -25 (C) temperatures in Warsaw, but it is not a feat to which I could bring myself regularly. Although I suppose the mulled wine with a shot of cassis liquor, as well as the hearty yet delicious food in Montreal, could help with the cold factor.
So I won’t be moving there, at least not for a while – my desperate craving for things French combined with my stubborn clinging to North America for the foreseeable future, as well as a very good friend stationed there, may eventually draw me back to arctic climates.
Montreal seems to have all that I am looking for in a city (sans snowstorms, of course): a historic and quaint old city replete with lovely churches, a lively downtown, an appropriately large river (I have realized I can’t live far from a moving body of water – this became my downfall in Brussels, whose river was built over and only a smelly canal was left in place, but don’t let me go on about that, please), plenty of culture and music, and loads of people who do nothing else all day long but walk up and down the streets speaking that most beautiful language of the world, which in case I haven’t made it clear enough yet, is French. Oh yes, and there’s plenty of world-renown universities and such if you’re into that sort of thing (I suspect I should be more than I am).
Montreal, for me, was the perfect combination of a dapper European city with the laidback and friendly North American city, all covered with a tasty layer of la langue française.
Now if only the clouds would lift…
And the snow and ice not fall.
Then I will move there.