Saturday, August 9
A taste of how eccentric the Montreal B&B is – this critter sits near where I had breakfast – two storeys up.
Though you might not be able to tell from the photo, this is a stuffed bird.
After breakfast I went to Montreal's Basilica of Notre Dame. It's a big, beautiful place. The main sanctuary takes advantage of the building on a slope. The pews in front are naturally lower than the ones in back.
The chapel burned and was rebuilt as a blend of modern and historic. I like the altar backdrop.
I walked through the Old Town and found some lunch. From there I went out on the quays. There was a reason for that. My only previous visit to Montreal was Expo 67, the World Fair. We spent lots of time in the fair and didn't see much of the city. Of a few things kept of the fair one is Habitat 67, housing apartments that look like a jumble of blocks. I wanted to take a picture of that. This photo was as close as I could get.
I took a tour of Chateau Ramezay, the original home of the guy who administered Montreal. The house is over 250 years old and now a museum. I took a guided tour. This is where Benjamin Franklin tried to convince the residents of Quebec to join the revolution the American colonies were starting. But the British had instituted a new policy in 1774 that allowed the French of Quebec to stay French. It seems the British did a lot to accommodate those in Quebec. What would have happened if the British had been as willing to accommodate the Americans?
Near the Chateau is Marche Bonsecours, a building turned into an upscale shopping area. I bought a midafternoon snack. The rest was too pricey.
From there I walked to the Gay Village. A slightly different vibe (and decorations over the street), but not all that different from the rest of the city. Here's the major street.
As in Italy a couple years ago I've noticed the obesity rate is much smaller in Canada than it is in America. National food and farming policies (and level of corporate control) make a big difference in people's weight and health.
I wasn't ready for supper yet, so I walked through some neighborhoods to and up Mont Royal. It was interesting to see how many ran or rode bikes (with and without dogs) up the mountain. Here's one of the views from the lookout. Yes, I was tired by the time I got down and the backs of my legs still ache two days later.