and you’re draped on him while you’re staring at me
I can finally announce some exciting news that I’ve been keeping a lid on for WEEKS now. I am an invited panellist for the upcoming Social Media Week Conference in Vancouver! I will be discussing influence, building my personal online brand, and the influence of my social media initiatives whilst on the road. The talk is fostered by Via Rail, and they are putting me on the cross-Canada train from Toronto to Vancouver, where I will blog and live-tweet while zooming through our country’s beautiful Rockies, plains, forests, and lakes. My travel junkie virus is acting up just thinking about it!
If you’re going to the conference, or will be in Vancouver from September 19 to 23, register here to attend the event.
I’ll be hanging around for a few days after the panel, so if you’re about in Van.City and want to destroy the city in hockey-fuelled riots (I kid, I kid), you know where to find me!
More details on my panel discussion can be found here.
my follow-up post will be all about Montreal graffiti. swearsies.
so for now, just indulge me.
montreal is a city rich with my family history.
my maternal family emigrated there from lebanon at the turn of the 20th century. my paternal family emigrated there from portugal around 60 years ago. almost every street, park, market, village, or mountain is stained with the faces of my family.
the look of the houses, the wrought-iron stairwells that spiral down rue berri, the distinct joual accent, the crumble and fall of the streets in disrepair, the dépanneurs hip-jointing each corner like bolts…. as if my childhood was slapping me around, waking me up.
i was remembering that dream, of that other life i used to live. i thought i had imagined it.
it had been almost 20 years since i had seen an old friend from elementary school.
we reconnected at café névé on rue rachel, and i actually remembered his mannerisms and facial expressions.
it had been so long since i had seen him, i was beginning to believe i had made him up in my head.
growing up in quebec, we were bred (like the rest of canada) to hate toronto. then when i moved to toronto at the age of 12, i found myself converted. toronto=awesome. but perhaps because i missed out on montrealer teenage rebellion and discovery, i never developed a strong connection to the city.
minus the years that i lived abroad, i’ve spent the majority of my adult life in toronto which has a vibe and culture all its own. i love it and will always fight its corner
but now, i’m entertaining a return to montreal.
even on the Métro, bouncing about as the trains’ rubber tires rolled us from station to station, i felt somewhere familiar. somewhere that i really belonged. i fought hard to carve my name with toronto’s pen knife. but there’s enough skin left on this gal to carve another.
maybe i never wanted to return to montreal because of all the painful memories.
but that’s a blog post for another day.
philip and i have known each other for donkey’s years, we did our Masters degrees together. he likes to brag that i knew him when he was “straight.”
aw pumpkin, you were foolin’ no one.
these kids were playing jump rope in an alley off of Duluth.
zero photo-editing here. if this were black and white, this could pass for a turn-of-the-century snap.
Montreal=keepers and purveyors of vintage cool.
the de Maisonneuve cross.
my grandfather, great grandfather (et.al.) are buried up there on Mont Royal.
there’s probably no space to add me into the family plot. they’ll have to bury me sideways.
we cycled through parc jarry, and then cheered on a gay softball tournament.
40 years ago, my mother worked for the Expos in parc jarry.
phil is such a blessed character. when he laughs, his body ricochets joy. blade-worthy sharp intelligence, and loves to jaunt.
he’s also my saviour when it comes to killing spiders.
from the moment I rolled into montreal on boulevard réné levesque and gave a street kid at a red light a twoonie, my french kicked in with a throttle. for the past few years, i have maintained my french daily by switching my facebook, twitter, emails, and my blackberry to french. it forces me to practice, and it paid off. i only stumbled a bit over my conjugation (fuck you subjonctif! il faut que tu fasse un bise sur mon trou de cul).
this tex mex dinner was had on a patio in marché jean talon, which i haven’t been to since i was eight or nine years old.
my Sitto used to take me every weekend with my great aunts, and although i don’t remember much, i do remember Sitto giving me a quarter to drop into the cup of a disabled man who was selling pencils. i also remember the caged animals next to the fruit stands. they don’t sell caged animals there anymore.
he’s so fierce.
piggy backs: a billion three-year-olds can’t be wrong.
getting tanked in the graffiti alleys. we bring the party.
if you missed it in my last post, here’s the video that i made of my Montreal extravaganza.
i’m fucking endearing.
* * *
Once again, I’m reviewing films for this year’s Toronto International Film Festival, so if you see me around the festival circuit, or in the cinemas furiously scribbling, don’t hesitate to say hi.
If you mistake me for my doppleganger Rachel Weisz, don’t feel bad. Happens all the livelong day.
see what i mean?
Hey Rachel, if you’re in town for the fest, let a sistah know. Let’s walk the red carpets together and freak the shit outta the paps.
This entry was posted on September 9, 2011 by Christine Estima. It was filed under biking, Christine Estima, facebook, film, Ford Canada, GIFs, montreal, movies, photography, reviews, social media, street culture, TIFF, toronto, travel, tweet up, Vancouver, Via Rail, writing .