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Beth Nauss: In Montreal on spring break, mom and daughter chill out


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Beth Nauss: In Montreal on spring break, mom and daughter chill out

 

 

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In a blinding display of “what was she thinking?” brilliance, I went to Montreal for spring break.

 

The first problem was that I went with my oldest daughter. I love my daughter. She is an excellent traveling companion. But no one with a body my age should ever try to keep up with someone who is more than a decade younger and actually runs for a hobby.

 

The second problem was that it was in Canada.

For anyone who hasn’t been there, Canada is the huge mass of ice between the United States and the North Pole. In addition to ice, it is occupied primarily by Canadians, many of whom speak fluent Canadian.

 

For reasons that seemed perfectly logical at the time, my daughter and I decided spring break was the perfect time to go to there.

 

After all, it would be spring. Spring is warm. Therefore, Montreal would be warm. I’m sure people in Montreal get a hearty laugh at that thought.

 

This was the first time I’d ever traveled to Canada as a destination. I’d flown over it a few times, looking down at the snow and thinking it was probably pretty cold there in the winter.

 

After I landed, I realized it’s pretty cold in the springtime, too. In fact, based on the 10 feet of snow still on the ground at the end of March, Canada is probably pretty cold most of the time.

 

When we checked the forecast and learned what the actual weather would be, I told my daughter not to worry, the locals must have adapted by now. I was sure that because Montreal is a major metropolitan area and tourist destination, the attractions would be open year round and would be readily accessible, clear of snow and ice. I’m sure people in Montreal get a hearty laugh at that thought as well.

 

What I didn’t know was that their way of adapting to the snow was packing it down and walking over it, possibly because they have no choice.

 

After a certain point, clearing snow becomes futile because you have no more places to put it. The result is that the streets are clean and dry, while balconies, vacant lots, parks, playgrounds and parking lots are buried under large mounds of snow that, in many parts of the U.S., would support multiple ski resorts.

 

[url=http://www.readingeagle.com/article.aspx?id=87135#][/url]Fortunately, Montreal has an excellent underground public transportation system called the “Metro” (Canadian for “excellent underground public transportation system”).

 

We found that many of the snow-covered attractions were readily visible from a Metro station so we could at least take scenic photographs before retreating back underground into an area that was warm and dry.

 

Unfortunately, we couldn’t live in the Metro, so occasionally we had to brave the elements. One of those times involved a trip up Mont Royal, the snow-covered mountain in the middle of Montreal.

 

The pedestrian walkway up the mountain was (of course) covered with snow, ice and numerous hardy Canadians who were walking, running, skiing and biking their way to and from the top. One even drove by, oblivious to the wrong turn that took her off the pedestrian-free road a mile behind her.

 

These hardy Canadians were probably fortified by the local dish called “Poutine,” a pile of french fries and cheese drowning in a lake of thick brown gravy.

 

I felt that in the interest of Canada-U.S. relations, I should try some. When I did, I found that it would have been better if I hadn’t. We did, however, make it up Mont Royal without falling.

 

If any Canadians are reading this, before you accuse me of exaggerating, let me say that I love Canada. We had a great time there. Montreal is a beautiful city even if it is always covered with snow.

 

Let me also say that I know that sometimes Montreal has a warm season and, at least once a century, all the snow melts.

 

And when that happens, I hope to return. Even if you’re still serving Poutine.

 

http://www.readingeagle.com/article.aspx?id=87135

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Il ne faut pas perdre de vue que Montréal en hiver est une expérience très intense pour les nons initiés, spécialement cet hiver.

 

Un bon exemple de quelqu'un qui dit adorer quelque chose mais qui en fait ne fait que se plaindre et se lamenter de cette même chose. :hypnodisk:

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