Thursday, April 2, 2015

#274: Montréal Streetscape

The Plateau, Montréal
Two and half years ago, after convincing the Border Patrol that my novel-writing did not pose a threat to the Canadian labor market ("With all due respect, sir," I told the man with the badge, "it poses no threat to any market.") I took the summer off to live and write in Montréal. I pounded away at my laptop in grilled cheese cafés, went for long walks on Mont Royal, ice skated four days a week in a shopping mall, and spoke the language so poorly that I was actually heckled from a balcony by an elderly Québecois couple. So much for improving my French.

But I fell in love with the city, especially the streets of the Plateau. Though I slept in a tiny windowless room, my friend's place had a balcony overlooking the garden, and from the balcony I would sit with my morning coffee and watch the morning glories open and turn toward the sun, plotting my day's work, always leaving time for wandering.

This spray-painted #274 captures something of the spirit of a Montréal streetscape: it manages to be off-the-cuff and carefully crafted at the same time. Then there's that 7. Readers still are up on the air on what we should call the the slash through the middle (See the great "The Snick vs. the Euroslash" debate), but I do know the sight of it always puts a twinkle in my plain ol' U.S.A. eyes.

No comments: