We got up fairly early today and had breakfast at the hotel before heading down to Mont-Royal Metro station and catching the train to Place D’Armes. This is where the Vieux Port or the Old Town is. When we arrived there, it was like being in Paris – cobbled streets lined with open terraced cafés and restaurants. The Old Town really did have a lot of character about it – although there were a lot of souvenir shops dotted around that reminded you it was a tourist area.
It was difficult to tell that you were in Canada – and I must look like a native because everyone keeps talking to me in fluent French…I’m just smiling and saying ‘Oui’, ‘Non’ et ‘Pardon.’ Seio is even speaking to me in French although I’m not really sure what he’s saying to me!! …. I’m not entirely sure that he know himself either, but anyway…. I think we both need to study a little more before we debut our spoken language abilities!!
Moving on from Vieux Port we stopped for lunch in the park at Victoria Square opposite the World trade Centre at Montreal. Streets in the city centre are lined with trees, and the colours of the autumn leaves really stand out against the dull greys and browns of the office buildings. There is a mixture of old and new here, with historic architecture set against a modern background of glass fronted skyscrapers. Montreal has a very interesting vibe to it – it is a university town so there is a strong student presence here, but the city also hosts an international film festival and was once home to the Olympics. Each quartier or area has a different atmosphere, and on every corner you turn something different awaits!
After our quick snack we hopped on the ‘Metropolitain’ (…are you sure we aren’t in Paris, Seio??) to Viau and the Parc Olympique…that’s the Olympic Park to you and me! The stadium is huge…the swimming centre alone has about 5 or so pools…for those of you that have been reading the blog…that’s apparently about 2 more than Hawaii!!!
Seio and I said we were going to take it easy today, because I am still recovering from a bad cold that I caught in NY and also because Seio now has a sore throat too…My back is also a bit sore due to the lugging of my 22kg suitcase up 4 flights of stairs yesterday! Oh dear! Having said that though we still managed to walk all over the place…and yes before you ask there were quite a few stairs involved today as well!!