Finally, after months of anticipating, we were finally in Montreal and that much closer to Queen and Adam Lambert. Now, I do have to send out appreciation to my travel mates, The Woman, Peppermint Patty, Cinder and Mon Shin because they are not diehard Queen fans like I am and just came along because, well, Montreal is an awesome city to visit. We decided that we would take a walk to Old Montreal to visit some famous landmarks and of course, do a bit of shopping along the way. It was a beautiful day, a bit on the humid side, so our hair was pretty much standing on end when we finally reached Old Montreal, but it was worth it to have a chance to trip on the cobblestones that spread out before us.
Before you reach Old Montreal, you pass through China Town. It’s an awesome community with many shops, some of which have interesting names. Many of the shops actually sell the same goods – it is like you hit repeat every time you step inside one so I am not actually sure how anyone makes any money. While we were strolling along, we noticed a large gathering in front of store called Pap Pap. What was going on there? Well, of course, you know where our minds went with that one – a two for one Pap test store just waiting for a photo op. The large crowd was actually a tour group, however and they just happened to be regrouping in front of the store because Pap Pap is probably as easy a landmark to remember as any.
We finally reached Old Montreal after a few wrong turns – I was the leader but I have never claimed to have a strong sense of direction so you get what you pay for! We strolled around visiting shops but then decided that we needed to eat something. We stopped in at La Cage Brasserie Sportive (remember that name as it will play out later in our adventure) and each of us ordered an appetizer that we would share. We wanted to save room for the supper we planned to have before heading to Queen. The Woman decided to order a Greek salad. Now normally, she would hold off on the olives because she doesn’t really like them but the rest of the group said they would eat them. When the salad finally came, it looked suspiciously like a Caesar salad with olives. Well low and behold, when the waitress came back, she looked at the salad and said, “That is not a Greek salad; that is a Caesar salad with olives.”. I guess our powers of observation were right on target! By the time The Woman got her Greek salad, we were done the other appetizers and had finished off the olives from the Caesar salad so we were all pretty full.
On our way back to our hotel we stopped off at the IGA to see if they had mini ice cream cones – the ones with the pointy bottom, not flat bottom. Not sure why it mattered but Peppermint Patty prefers them when making her famous maple cones. We have come to realize, however that they are apparently rarer than the Hope Diamond because we tried several other stores and could not find them. Anyway, we did find out that the IGA was connected to a mall (bonus) and a liquor store (because what we brought with us was not enough) and so we did a little retail therapy, too.
Now as we were passing through the mall, we spotted one of those nifty photo booths and so decided that we had to take a photo of the five of us. I am not sure if you have recently tried out a mall photo booth, but they seem to be a lot smaller than I remember and trying to cram five fifty-plus women into one was quite a feat. We managed to contort our bodies enough so that our grimacing faces would be seen by the camera, put in our five dollars (last time I did this the cost was fifty cents) and screaming with laughter or pain or both, did four very interesting poses. We were quite the spectacle and attracted some interesting looks from the other shoppers. The photos looked pretty good on the screen so we were quite excited to see the finished product. Unfortunately, the pictures didn’t turn out – there were just lines on the little strip. Not to be deterred, The Woman approached the mall info booth to see if there was a way to retrieve our photos. They called the mall handyman who told us that he would be unable to retrieve our photos but that we could put the strip we had gotten into an envelop, mail it back to the company and they would refund our five dollars. Oh well, who needs a picture anyway; the memory of our attempt is enough!
We continued shopping, each of us looking for particular items. The Woman, who spends a lot of time at the gym, was on the search for some pretty athletic wear. Looking good is a must when one is working up a sweat! As we were getting ready to leave the mall, she asked us to wait as there was one more sports store she wanted to try out upstairs. When we got there it turned out to be the Le Cage Brasserie Sportive – an identical restaurant to the one we had eaten at in Old Montreal. As I have said before, we only had one bilingual member of our group and it was not The Woman! Laughing, we made our way back to our hotel to begin getting ready Queen and Adam Lambert! It was going to be an epic night.
To Be Continued