And not just because I ate poutine twice in one week and lived to tell the tale, and not just because Sheezlebub has made me Minister of Whacking Stupid People On The Head. I'm the luckiest girl ever because I got to hang out in Montreal with people that I love and whom presumably love me back.
Montreal is, at first glance, all balconies. That's what I remember--balconies on every apartment, and spiral staircases so steep that your head clears the second curve before your feet clear the first. Balconies and windows painted different colors on every building: purple and pink, yellow and green, black and richly stained wood. "Pas de circulaire" signs on all the doors of all the apartments, not color-coordinated with the balconies. That's probably a bit too much to ask.
We went up a horridly steep spiral staircase to Magda's one afternoon and into her long, narrow, utterly beautiful apartment. We consumed bread from the Polish bakery down the street and spinach pastries from the Pakistani restaurant and rabbit pate. I played with her cat, Kropka, who has a tiny spot on her chin (hence the name, which means "little dot" in Polish). All the time we were there, from the first bite of bread to the last bit of coffee and cherry tart, the sun shone through her kitchen windows. I was in the room with three of my favorite people and one person I was beginning to like very much.
Then, Friday, we met up with jhave totally by chance--an email had been misdirected or had gone unread, so he wasn't sure what I was doing or when I was leaving. Thanks to synchronicity and a bad lecture on temporal modalities in art, we got to hang out at the cinq-a-sept for a Chinese artist and talk neurology and productivity and romance. So there was Close Pal Number Four, just dropped into my lap.
Afterwards, we all (save jhave, who had a hot date with his girlfriend) went to Pied de Cochon and ate pork bits. Except for me, who had venison bits. Jacques and Arek and Justina and Joey were in rare form, the waiter teased me about being from Texas and shooting him, and then we went home to bed. Can't do better than that.
Now I've got a pot of spaghetti sauce bubbling on the stove. When I look out the window, I don't see Parc La Fontaine covered with snow; I see boring plain balconies. Spring is coming, the pear trees are trying to bloom.
I can't paint my balcony pink, but I think I'll get some window boxes this week.