Getting Away From Montréal

Greetings from the Fort Lauderdale airport in sunny and humid Florida! I’m currently writing this post here because I unfortunately couldn’t get my computer to connect to the wifi where I was staying. I have the time to write because taking the plane back to Montreal usually means a delay, in my case, a delay of an hour.

This post is a little unconventional because I should be speaking about Montreal, however, as you all have probably found out, Montreal is not the most welcoming place in the winter. It also has a winter of approximately 6 long excruiatingly cold months, which is why a lot of Québécois families travel to Florida. No, not just anywhere in America, but pretty much the wonderfully warm and palm tree-filled state of Florida. These people are endearingly referred to as “snowbirds”. Or, people who want to have the best of both worlds (if you love summer, like I do).

So I will be speaking about Florida and the States, because although Montréal has a great many experiences to offer, sometimes it’s relaxing to take a short and little vacation to a place that doesn’t make you want to loathe everything about it (for the next 5.75 months). Take it as a metaphor for your job or career, if you will.

Last year was my first time ever entering the United States of America (sad, I know), and I had the pleasure of going to Fort Lauderdale because my Québécois boyfriend and his family have been going since he was born (or somewhere around that time period). It was surreal to me, to see Christmas lights and reindeer and trees and ornaments and to listen to music, when it wasn’t cold, nor white, nor full of people wearing coats or boots. Every winter I’ve ever remembered has been cold, and even more so when I came to Montreal 4 years ago for my undergrad.

Here are the things I’ve learned from my two outings to Florida:

Florida is never never never ever cold. So you can imagine my surprise to walk into Forever 21 and not be able to find any winter clothes. For example, this week when I went to the malls, I wanted to find a new pair of Timberlands. To my dismay I couldn’t find a single pair, and now I’ll have to pay the 15% tax in Montréal (6% tax? outrageous!), which saddens me greatly.

I also missed Tim Hortons, because although I have been called a Starbucks girl, I will forever and always remain a loyal Canadian fan, and my beloved French vanilla was alas, nowhere to be found. For the life of me I will never understand why America doesn’t get more Tim Hortons.

Squirrels are rare. Lizards are basically American squirrels.

Americans are really outgoing and nice. I would say that when it comes to politeness, Canadians win, but Americans go up to you and ask you about your life. It scares me.

Americans are also intimidating when it comes to security. Now that I’ve been to America I know that those chick flicks with the guy/girl rushing to the airport and somehow getting past the security check? Yeah, that doesn’t exist. Only on the big screen.

Florida drivers are horrible drivers.

Starbucks in Florida gives you the option of hot or iced Christmas drinks. ?!?!?!?

Boxing Day sales don’t exist that much here.

American breakfast diners are cheap. Really cheap. $2 cheap.

Iced tea does not contain sugar in it. I found that out the hard way, when I asked for one and put brown cane sugar in it, which didn’t melt. In the end, I got a Coke. Go figure.

PENNIES STILL EXIST. I took much advantage of this. Sorry to all those cashiers who waited for me to give them 14 cents.

The McDonalds in America give you the caloric value of everything. Pro? I know how much I’m eating. Con? I know how much I’m eating.

Movie theaters don’t have Tuesday discounts.

The calculation from Fahrenheit to Celsius is way too hard to do. The only thing I’ve remembered is that Florida is a hot state.

Be Sociable, Share!

Comments are closed.

Blog authors are solely responsible for the content of the blogs listed in the directory. Neither the content of these blogs, nor the links to other web sites, are screened, approved, reviewed or endorsed by McGill University. The text and other material on these blogs are the opinion of the specific author and are not statements of advice, opinion, or information of McGill.