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rue-madame's Diaryland Diary

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Au Québéc

I now want to emigrate to Canada. I always suspected that it was better than the US, but now I know for certain. True North America is where it’s at, yo.

And it’s not just because we were offered $400 in flight vouchers to switch flights on the way to Montreal. Although that was a nice perk for getting to the airport early. Oh Canada indeed!

Our luggage even got lost between Toronto and Montreal, and my love wavered not one bit.

The hotel was delightful and relaxing. Some of the best money I’ve ever spent. The bathtub was gigantic and deep and so luxurious.

Highlights of the trip included:

- the metro which, though small, is designed just like the Parisian one and makes getting around so easy

- St Viateur bagels

- Buckminster Fuller’s Biosphere

- the famous poutine: frites smothered in gravy and clumps of cheese curd. Sounds disgusting on paper but tasted pretty good, actually. If only I’d had a hangover to justify ingesting such a thing!

- admiring the architecture which veers between French stone construction and Western frontier town

- tub soaks with Lush bath bombs. I only wish I’d remembered to buy this and some of this. I know there are stores here, but the dollars are not Canadian.

- inexpensive La Roche-Posay sunscreen and Evian moisturizer at Pharmaprix

- viennoiseries and patisseries that tasted authentically French

- meeting people whose fluency in English and French matched my own. An entire province filled with me! If only their accents hadn’t been so nutty. It took a day or so for my ears to adjust to the Quebecois sounds, but TA was mystified the entire time.

- Finding volume 4 of my favorite French historical mystery novel … used!

- Perfect Fall weather

- lunch at l’Express where after you sit down, the waiter brings you a basket of bread, a little thing of butter, a pot of mustard and a gigantic jar of freshly made cornichons

We did not get around to eating smoked meat sandwiches because the line was too long, and we were teetering on the precipice of Low Blood Sugar Meltdowns. Hey something to look forward to next time!

We did not buy an authentic Hudson Bay Point Blanket. That was supposed to be our significant and authentic souvenir. Terence didn’t mind the idea of lugging the 8-lb blanket (with the gray stripes) through Customs; I just couldn’t make a decision. I figure, if I change my mind, the blankets will still be there. They’ve been in production for more than 2 centuries!

Instead of the blanket, as his memento, Terence bought a bright red Olympic zipup with “CANADA” on the front. I brought LouLou, Quebec’s answer to Lucky Magazine.

Vive la différence!

3:24 p.m. - 2004-09-20

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