I am surprisingly, nonplussed at the chaotic weaving of cars and buses...having a large city bus brush my pant leg - making his own lane - it feels like carpe diem. Do what is necessary - and yet I sense no anger or frustration - more an observation of the creativity of wending your way through a parking lot. A fiat rides a curb - three cars abreast in two lanes..I am enjoying this, while trying to locate landmarks to our destination.
It is now critical that we stop and we tuck into a Macdonald's parking lot and bask in shade and observe the bedlam. We navigate to our apartment for the next few days, quickly change and armed with cameras we take to the streets.
It feels foreign immediately. The signs are all in French, and old churches and buildings abound in the area. We are in Mont Royal area and the kaleidescope of ever changing beauty has me looking in every direction. Filles/Garcon entrances at a school, Notre Dame College and finally we are at Saint-Joseph's Oratory of Mount Royal.
This took our breath away...not only was it hundreds and hundreds of steps to get to the top...but when you looked out from the terrace Montreal was in all its glory like a skirt spread on a picnic blanket. We had been in the city for less than two hours and the sounds and sights were proving to be well worth 5,000km journey.