I made it to Montreal! It only took 7 hours, and 7 years since my last visit, but I'm here! As we traveled here today, I spent part of the trip remembering all the previous visits, which always included my sister who is now married and could not join us this time around as her family had previous plans this weekend. I can honestly say that I have no idea how many times I've been to Montreal in my life, but if I said I dozen I wouldn't consider it a lie or exaggeration. Maybe it was more. Some random memories that stick out include, but are not limited to the following: that time in the car to Montreal when my sister stuck a yellow M&M up her nose, and then it broke into pieces and we freaked out that she wasn't going to be able to get it out (HILARIOUS), but didn't tell our parents because they'd get mad... the time we went shopping to a mall that had a pet store which was selling a leopard shark for $999 Canadian dollars (I wanted it badly and still do)... the many trips to our favorite supermarket anywhere, Adonis, and all the wonderful Middle Eastern specialties they sell... all the various outlets malls we visited (and will visit tomorrow--so excited)... visiting the Olympic stadium... going downtown during the jazz festival... a random Chinese buffet dinner at a mall, which I will never forget for some strange reason... watching "The Restaurant" marathon with my sister back when it was still on and one of our favorite shows at the time... there's just so many random memories which probably make sense to no one but me, but it's just a sliver of my childhood visits here :)
Another memory includes my parents' diligence in preparing sandwiches for all of our road trips (and there were lots!). We never go hungry. As I mentioned yesterday, I prepared trail mix for the trip, but also made some yummy sandwiches, took some fresh cucumbers from our garden and fresh cherries for a little fruit fix. For the sandwiches I used a whole wheat baguette from Whole Foods, some leftover sriracha aioli from the amazing salmon cakes I made the other day, some Sante Fe turkey breast (which had peppers and tomatoes on the crust), honey ham, Genoa salami, sharp provolone cheese, romaine hearts, and green olive tapenade. They were delicious!! Sadly it didn't occur to any of us how absolutely thirsty cold cuts/olives would make us. And on the other hand you never want to drink too much water on the road as to avoid many rest area stops. It was an oversight, but a delicious one :)
If you've never driven to Canada from New England, it can be very surreal as you cross the border. You drive for miles through farms and cornfields. In late summer, you're greeted by signs for "Mais Sucre" or sweet corn. After about an hour, the traffic begins as you near the city. Excitement ensues!
I can't wait to share the rest of my trip with you all! We never do many touristy things when we're here (other than shopping) because we visit and stay with my Godfather, so it's more of a family visit than a touristy vacation. Either way though, I'm sure I'll have some fun news to report so stay tuned and enjoy your holiday weekend!