having survived my midnight express border crossing moment, i headed into montreal. i ate poutine at a restaurant while waiting for the ex-pat twins f2fb friends #207 joe winer and #208 karl thelen to be available–joe is a graduate of mcgill university, while karl is set to graduate in december. joe and karl were members of that incredible band, the strikingly talented ninjaviduals.
in montreal, there’s a lot of french language going on. when you have to slow down on the freeway for construction and then you emerge back into the “anything goes” speed limit, the signs say “fin” which makes me think “damn i’m in a french movie and it’s existential and i’m quite possibly dead”. . . .
the french in montreal are so stylish they even dress their trees.
karl and joe wanted to take me to the biodome. i thought biodome was a movie with pauly shore. but, in fact, next to the dome which housed the 1976 summer olympics there is another dome that houses four ecosystems. there was a rain forest where we saw monkeys, crocodiles, and a strange bird who tried to pull karl’s shoelaces. then there was the arctic/antarctic, the saint lawrence river, and then there was the northeast canadian forest. . . . this was cheaper than us all taking a road trip to nova scotia —
karl and i spent a lot of time resetting the language preferences on video displays throughout the museum–everything in quebec drifts to french, although you have an english language option. i get the feeling that when you are at mcgill you don’t necessarily have to learn french.
on the third floor of my house is a space that allows for a thriving, now, talented and LOUD band to play. joe and karl have often seen me in my pajamas on the third floor announcing “band practice is over, i’ve had quite enough thank you”. . . because they have worked so much with my two sons. they were very protective of my younger son, f2fb friend #1 eastman, who is a few years younger than they are. it was a comfort to me to ask karl “you’ll get eastman home safe?” and he always said yes and he was right. there was, however, the interesting question of what joseph (f2fb friend # 61) was smoking all that time. i got it covered–it was mugwort. and i’m sorry to say that once when i was cleaning house, i ingested quite a bit of that stuff. argh.
we said goodbye. i was so happy that karl was running off to a date with his galpal, joe was winding things down for the night. the boy scouts and i went to china town. we ate thai escargot which i would recommend to anybody who gains weight on their new years resolution–you extract the escargot with toothpicks and i got exactly three of those suckers out of there. ben was great at it.
branden asked that his fried tofu be boxed. it was. with sauce. he put a fork and napkin in the box. i knew we were going to the hotel. there would be forks. no need to take one. but i didn’t realize–as we left the restaurant, we passed a couple setting up their home on the steps of a local bank. branden offered them dinner. they were so happy. i learned something new about how i will do things.
p.s. if you want to see the biodome. . . http://www2.ville.montreal.qc.ca/biodome/site/site.php?langue=en