Writes of Passage

"Poetry Reading"  from www.analogartistdigitalworld.com

Café Mariposa is a tiny place located in Notre-Dame-De-Grace. It’s not very conspicuous and from the inside looks like a cozy room crowded with colorful objects. Paintings of a nude woman, with an overtly protruding bosom line the walls of the place. Inside, several tables are assembled together to increase the surface area of interaction for the guests of the Quebec Writer’s Federation Schmoozer. The focus of the event is to celebrate “Montreal Writes” – a writers’ group formed during a workshop by the QWF ten years ago.

I walk into a loud scene of people chatting animatedly, half-full glasses of drink and there is a foot-by-foot area by the door where a piano stands next to a microphone. A guitar is hung on the wall behind the mic, presumably for people who wish to do improv on open-mic nights (I had previously read that this place is notorious for open-mic nights for musicians). As I take a seat far removed from the crowds on a bench, I wait for someone to approach me and ask if I had come for the event but everyone seems so engaged in conversation. Where were the organizers? It suddenly dawns on me that, for the first time in my life, I am at a social event where I literally know nobody. I pull out my cell-phone and pretend to do something important. Occasionally, I glance up to see if anyone had noticed me.

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Where did summer go?

Where did all the time go?  This summer seemed so immense only a month ago, and all of a sudden we only really have a few weeks left until it is time to start thinking about fall again.

What have I accomplished so far this summer?

  • I have profited from Montreal.  I attended the Jazz Fest, the Francofolies festival, random street festivals that I didn’t know existed before, gone to a free tango class, biked all over the island at all times of day and night, had poutine, did yoga on the Lachine canal, got bagels from St. Viateur so often that I am now friends with the employees and get my bagels for free, went to house parties, climbed the mountain, tried the flying trapeze, attended Tam-tams and Piknic Elektronik…. and Much more.
  • I have gained amazing exposure through singing in the metro.  The amount of social and musical confidence I have gained through this experience is unmatched.  I have never in my life performed so often in such a short amount of time.  I have been featured by a small TV station, met agents, recording engineers, other musicians, circus performers, and music lovers.
  • I have built a very healthy lifestyle.  I have found a way to eat mostly local, organic food, exercise consistently, and know when I need sleep.  Hopefully I’ll bring this skill into the following year.
  • I have rekindled my desire to make music, learn, and work hard in this amazing life.  After a hard year of papers and study, sometimes the last thing you want to do is continue to study.  But there is so much to learn in this world.  And, most of the learning is experiential – all you need to do is step outside your comfort zone, and make ‘Yes’ be your magic word.
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