Monday, January 30, 2012

Our first and only Montreal winter

We totally cheated. When we came here last May, everyone laughed when they found out we were from LA. "Have you been through winter yet? Just wait." Montreal winter is legendary. It's epic. This year though, it's been really mild. Mild enough that even Husband, a notorious cold weather hater, hasn't been able to complain. We may not have been here a whole year, but at least we got to experience all four seasons.
Frost-covered branches look like pipe-cleaners.

Wednesday, January 4, 2012


I started this blog seven months ago when Husband and I (and the menagerie) moved from Los Angeles to Montreal. The idea of pulling up roots and starting a new life in a new and unfamiliar place was exciting and nerve-wracking, and this blog was meant to be a way to chronicle and share our experiences. Obviously, I fell pretty short on the chronicling.

Now it seems our time in Montreal is coming to an end. Despite planning to be here for several years, an opportunity has come up that will take us back to Los Angeles next month. Leaving so soon is bittersweet for me. LA is home, but I was just starting to get the hang of things here, had started to make friends, and my French was coming back nicely. But I’m grateful for the chance to have lived here even for a short time. Living outside the U.S. was something I'd always wanted to do, and I was jealous that Husband had had that chance before we met.

I’ve started a bucket list of things to do (and restaurants to visit) before we leave. Current front-runner on the list: get tickets to a Habs game. I’ll never forgive myself if I leave Montreal without going to a hockey game. We’ll be here for about six more weeks, and I’ll try to be a more faithful blogger until we are re-rooted in LA.

Thursday, October 13, 2011

On autumn and apples

I’m back. I’ve been trying to figure out what this blog will be about and I think my lack of focus is what’s kept me from posting for a while. We’ve been muddling through, learning more and more about Montreal and Quebec. I’ll try to do the same here…and hopefully gain some sound footing on this blog and out there.

Everyone we meet laughs when they hear we’ve moved here from California, and then asks if we’ve experienced winter yet, I’m starting to worry that the next 6 months will be like life on the Arctic tundra. This fear is making me want to make the most of autumn in and around Montreal so two weeks ago, fearful that fall color had possibly peaked out in the country, I announced that we were going apple picking and leaf-gazing. A smarter person would have checked the weather first; a really smart person would have suggested a rain check.

Monday, August 15, 2011

I wish I were making this up.

A few weeks ago, I kissed Husband and pets goodbye and took off for 4 days in the North Georgia mountains with 3 high school friends. After three months of new and unfamiliar, it was great to be with people who’ve known me so long they remember my original hair color.

There was pulled pork, foie gras from Quebec, cupcakes, ceviche, guacamole, a monster pinata, a wine tasting day, feet dipped in the river, dragonflies, dinner cooked by a private chef, lots of bug spray, and perhaps a few too many drinks.

Tuesday, July 26, 2011


Summer in Los Angeles never seemed that different from any other season. We grilled, gardened, and threw dinner parties under the apricot tree pretty much year-round. Things are different here. I’m learning a new vocabulary of weather and atmosphere that is unfamiliar. I can’t quite do the conversion to Celsius in my head, but I’ve learned that 30 degrees is hot. Mix that with high humidity and it makes for a powerful change from what I’m used to. You have to move more slowly in this weather, otherwise you wind up sticky after 5 minutes. 

Friday, July 15, 2011

Here's what you missed...

Things have been chaotic lately. In the past few weeks I’ve done the following:

  • Flown to LA and back to Montreal (with the cat)
  • Taken 2 pets to 3 vets in 2 countries
  • Marveled at the fact that 2 out of 3 pets have managed to tear their cruciate ligament, especially since one has already had it surgically repaired
  • Packed up the temporary apartment
  • Moved into the house, unpacked lots of boxes, and had a joyous reunion with our stuff from storage
  • Cooked good food
  • Celebrated our 7th anniversary
  • Hung out in our yard and on our deck
  • And tried to convince New Dog that the back yard isn’t a terrifying place to be avoided

Whew. That’s a lot.

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

A Tale of Two Festivals, or Why 62 Drink Tickets Are Too Many.

A couple of weeks ago, Husband and I decided to check out the Mondial de la Bière at Place Bonaventure. We were eager to sample some local microbrews and also get our fix of some of our US favorites. We went on Thursday evening and after waiting in line for about 30 minutes to get drink tickets, Husband decided to buy a bunch rather than have to brave the line again. His version is that he read somewhere that tastings would be between 2-5 tickets. I talked him down to 62 (plus the commemorative beer steins). 

Good thing, since it turned out most tastings only cost 2 tickets.