Thursday, July 28, 2011

SFU and City of Surrey Transportation Lecture Program

Last year I had the chance to participate in a great transportation program operated by SFU and the City of Surrey. It's a pretty sweet deal and they're doing it again this year and I highly suggest that you check it out:

Montreal: Part 1

Let me just say that Montreal is just a stunning city. I've been to Montreal before (2004 and 2006) but a lot has changed since the last time I visited. This time around, I stayed in a hotel, not a hostel (all growed up!) on the edge of Montreal's gay village at Rue Ste. Catherine West and Rue Berri. When I got off the express bus from the airport (it had wifi AND A/C - merci!), the street greeted me with a buzz of activity. The park/plaza at Berri-UQAM was done up for summer events: 
The plaza was painted playfully and tastefully. In certain section it was painted to be used as giant chess/checker boards for the public to use.
This plaza had events programs and was supervised all week. This was some sort of theatre piece.
A wooden platform that can be used as seating or as a stage.


I was delighted to see that they had also pedestrianized Rue Ste. Catherine between Rue Barri and Rue Papineau:
Google Maps
They decorated the entire length of pedestrianized street with what looked like pink Christmas tree bulbs:
The look was festive and playful.
Although, I didn't capture it well in my photos, the street was always covered in people. Up and down Ste. Catherine there were patios and cafes and buskers - something that I'm extremely jealous of (maybe Granville street in the future?).

One of the things that I love about Montreal is the relaxed laws around patios and liquor. Montreal has the most gorgeous outdoor patio seating. Sometimes, the patio for a restaurant was across or up the street so you saw servers dance around the crowds. On some streets, the patio seating took over most of the sidewalk.

In Montreal, you can also bring your own wine to restaurants (they do, however, charge you an uncorking fee...unless you're really nice and they forget to charge you). I don't want to sound like an alcoholic but it's nice to be in a city that treats alcohol a bit more casually. More to come!

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

I'm BACK!

Well, that was certainly the longest I've gone without posting. I was away on vacation in Montreal and Toronto from July 7th to the 16th and work became hectic the week prior to that (trying to finish everything before I left...vacations create a lot of work, I've realized). After I got back it was catch up time. I'm sufficiently caught up with life to do the things I love again.

I'm going to be throwing up some posts about Montreal and Toronto (my love for those two cities are even more affirmed). There's also a ton of neat stuff going on in Vancity. Stay tuned!