So, it seems that making new friends has been less of a challenge than I had anticipated it being. Already my weekends have been booked back to back with fondu parties, drinks and shopping with a fabulous duo, bowl after bowl of ramen, midnight rides on the Montreal Metro, shuffling feet across the sparkling snow hand-in-hand towards the house of the night's dinner hosts. And there is so much more in the plans! Never have I been in a place where everyone is so proud of their town, and they are all jumping at the chance to tell you how wonderful life is among the crooked streets and tiny corner stores. Between the language police and man-sized pot holes is a city that lavishes in it's own unique flaws...and makes for passionate conversation around the dinner table.
Christmas this year will be something of a duel experience: On one side, I'll be missing the familial closeness of the Elam tradition of Christmas tamales, cocktail sausages, and ripping through wrapping paper on that glorious morning. But on the flip side, I'll actually get to experience that classic Yuletide scene of snow-topped trees covered in little twinkling lights and people bundled up to the eyeballs. I can remember at home always thinking "its Christmas, but it doesn't feel like it". Here, it certainly feels like the Christmases captured in a snow globe.