Beating Myself Up Over The Gossipers

Les chuchoteuses (English: “The Gossipers”) is a 2002 bronze outdoor sculpture by Rose-Aimée Bélanger installed along Montreal’s Rue Saint-Paul, in Quebec, Canada.

I took the above photo ten years ago on my second visit to the beautiful city of Montreal. I’ve been beating myself up ever since for cutting off the middle gossiper’s toes!

Here’s a pic of the full sculpture from Wikipedia, toes and all:

Perhaps I should take the advice of this quote:

“Don’t beat yourself up for not being perfect. But you might want to kick your own ass
if you’re not trying to get better.” – Hal Elrod

By the way, I stopped beating myself over real gossipers a long time ago. 🙂

4 Things You Have To Do When Visiting Montreal

Montreal is one of the true gems of Canada, an incredible fusion of historical authenticity, cosmopolitanism and sheer beauty.

If you’re planning a trip to this wonderful city, there are plenty of ways to make the most of it. While any trip to Montreal (click the link to check out photos from one of my visits there) is bound to be unforgettable, there are certain highlights that you may want to add to your list. Here are just four:

Trek Up Mount Royal

 Image: Wikimedia

Mount Royal is probably the first place you should head to when you arrive in Montreal. The gorgeous views you’ll get of the city will instantly make that hassle with the electronic travel authorisation system worth it. It’s a lovely, scenic walk (or bus ride) to the top, and once you reach the Belvedere Observatory, you’ll be captivated by the beauty of your vantage point. It’s also a great spot for an impressive selfie! If you’re an early bird, try to catch the sunrise from the top of Mount Royal. Seeing the sun creep up over the horizon and spill its rays through the skyscrapers is a magical experience.

Try the Food

Montreal is a true foodie’s city, partly due to the French colonists’ influence. The culinary classics of Montreal may be a little greasy for some traveller’s tastes, but don’t knock it until you try it. Poutine is a trademark of the city, and while it may not be all that appetizing to look at, after just one bite you’ll probably understand why it’s become such a local staple. You also should try a four-inch thick smoked meat sandwich, a specialty of many diners and cafés scattered throughout Montreal. A lot of guidebooks will recommend Schwartz’s, but the locals may tell you otherwise.

Visit a Market

Markets are one of the best ways for visitors to meet the locals and get a taste for the city’s culture. You’ll also want to try a variety of fresh and delicious fruits and vegetables, especially if you’re there in the summer when pretty much everything’s in season. If you’ve never tried locally grown Quebec strawberries, then this needs to go on your bucket list immediately. Try to save a fair chunk of your souvenir money for a market, to look for local delicacies such as ice wines and ciders or preserves. Just like anywhere in Canada, you’ll also find countless maple-flavoured products.

See the Basilique Notre-Dame

Whatever your spiritual leanings, the Basilique Notre-Dame is one church that you need to see when you’re visiting Montreal. The Basilique Notre-Dame (Or Notre-Dame Basilica, to Anglo-Canadians) is one of the most breathtaking cathedrals in the world, and one of the few in North America that doesn’t pale in comparison to the ones in Europe. Have a wander around, and spend a while marvelling at the rustic gothic facades, the giant organ, and its beautiful chapel.

These are just a few suggestions to make your visit to Montreal a fun and interesting one. I hope I am lucky enough to return again one day to enjoy this beautiful city’s culture.

Have you ever visited Montreal?

Scenes from Montreal

With few signs of spring here in Newfoundland, and our vacation more than two weeks away, I’m getting a little restless for a change of climate and scenery. This morning found me looking back on photos from a different spring, of our May trip to Montreal five years ago. Won’t you come along and take in some sightseeing with me, in one of my favourite cities?

Montreal 2009 026
view from our hotel room


Montreal 2009 014 (2)
inside the Centre for Architecture
Montreal 2009 028
Montreal Museum of Fine Arts
Montreal 2009 029
Let’s go inside.
Montreal 2009 030
Exhibition by Yoko Ono

Montreal 2009 032Montreal 2009 031

John Lennon's Piano
John Lennon’s Piano

Montreal 2009 038 (2)

Mount Royal Park
Mount Royal Park

Montreal 2009 049

Montreal 2009 051

Montreal 2009 052
playing in the park 😉

Montreal 2009 053

Montreal 2009 055
Ah…Spring in full bloom

Montreal 2009 056

view from hotel # 2
view from hotel # 2
Loving Old Montreal!
Loving Old Montreal!

Montreal 2009 075

Montreal 2009 076

pretty windows
pretty windows
Montreal 2009 082
admiring the architecture

Montreal 2009 152

Montreal 2009 103
Montreal 2009 106
Montreal 2009 108

View from the top of Olympic Stadium
View from the top of Olympic Stadium

Montreal 2009 124Montreal 2009 111Montreal 2009 112

I wanted to bring these home.
I wanted to bring these home.
Sunday Fun Downtown
Sunday Fun Downtown

Montreal 2009 132
Montreal 2009 134

Enjoying sangria on Crescent Street

Hoping to visit again someday.

Have you ever been to Montreal? Lived there? What is your favourite city to visit?

Travel Theme: Multiples


Here is my contribution to Ailsa’s travel theme this week, a closer look at multiples on some vacations of mine.

To start things off, here are a couple of snaps from Cuba.

imageHmm…this perspective is making me thirsty.

Of course, when it comes to multiple anything, Disney World delivers.



Inside the Notre Dame Cathedral in Paris, an abundance of stained glass splendour awaits.

…And just outside the cathedral, who can resist all the tiny feathered friends eagerly accepting snacks?


A restaurant on a pier in Jamaica awaits its tablecloths, and its evening diners.

Springtime in Montreal is always a delight.


imageAlso in Montreal, I spotted these ladies. I just love them.

imageSwimming in Florida. Multiples come in actual human form too, of course.