So where did the last month go? Well, I did visit Montreal and stay with Edward and Julia in their huge "Loft Authentique", buried down near the old port and the Lachine Canal, right up against the railway tracks. Very much La Vie de Bohème, with Marcello, Schaunard and the gang lurking downstairs.
I was not idle, however: I fell in love (with Bixi bikes), spent much happy grandfatherly time tramping the heights of Westmount and communing with dinosaurs in the Redpath Museum with Kate and Norah (junior iteration), eating the obligatory smoked meat sandwich at Schwartz's (and leaving the appalling Cherry Cola (no glass provided)), singing Sarastro's bass aria (O Isis und Osiris..) inside the huge grain silos on the St. Lawrence via the Silophone, and of course doing some woodworking:
Actually I'm doing some plumbing. The old laundry tub which served Ed & Julia as a kitchen sink is gone, and a new economy-style sink unit has been created. Materials courtesy Home Depot, tools loaned by Kate's partner Justin, small plumbing parts Rona Quincaillerie. One weekend was just enough to rent a van, collect tools and materials, organise the carpentry crew (Andy, Stan*, Walter*, Kate, Norah, Justin, Ed and Julia), design a kitchen counter/bar using an old curved table-top and a stack of 2x4's, and build, paint, varnish, and plumb them as needed. Also repair the leaking toilet tank.
Justin & Ed celebrate with a glass of Islay Malt Painting Pipes
A last image from Montreal, which sums up a lot about a certain philosophy and method of determining the price for one's work: