Backyard Adventures: Montreal in January through the eyes of a Californian

My good friend Ron recently made his annual trip from the warm shores of California’s Orange County to my frigid neck of the woods. We met on a train ride across Canada some ten years ago and, of course, it’s always great to see him, but it’s also great to see Montreal through his eyes.

For one, Ron insists that it snow during his visit. He doesn’t see much snow in Dana Point, you see, and loves to romanticize the retched stuff. While in Canada, he wants to smile contentedly as he sips on a glass of Chardonnay (always Chardonnay) and watches snowflakes cover our city in a pure, white coating of misery.

It’s a novel attitude that I have struggled to adopt but find perfectly charming.

Now, Ron is in his eighties and a semi-retired travel agent, so he likes to visit in style, staying on the finer floors of the city’s finer hotels and insisting on a couple hours spent in the finer lounges of his chosen finer hotel. He invites me up and we chat and drink and then drink some more. This particular idiosyncrasy of his I have adopted without difficulty at all, though, unfortunately, I have been unable to sustain it following his departure.

Though likely back in California by now, Ron would be pleased to know it is currently snowing here in Montreal—great gobs of weaponized precipitation turning our streets into ice-cold swamps and our sidewalks into festivals of pratfalls—as he turns his smiling face to the pacific coast and breathes in the ocean breeze.

It’s always great to see him, and to see Montreal through his eyes.