June & July 2014: Sad and Happy Times

October 20, 2014

So after months of deliberation, we still couldn’t quite sort out what we were going to do. Niagara/Hamilton still had so much appeal due to low housing costs, proximity to Toronto and some fantastic friends … and wine. Toronto itself still felt a bit too expensive and in the long term would mean that saving for things like a house or holidays would be a tad trickier, although job prospects were likely to pay much higher. Blurg.

Then my parents suggested they come get us and at least bring us to Ontario to get us that much closer to actually making a choice. My job hunting from Montreal in the hopes that employment would guide us was not proving fruitful and we really did need to shit or get off the pot.

So we moved. And as we were moving I got the terrible news about my friend Awn which I’ve mentioned in a previous post. And being close to family and old friends seemed like a pretty good idea.

I loved my job at Cult. I felt so proud of the work I was doing and being self-employed was lovely. But Montreal wasn’t right for us on so many levels. It’s an incredible and vibrant city. But it was a heart vs. a head thing and it just never felt like home. There was no sense of permanence and I think you’ve got to listen to those cues.

I think to say that the past few months have been a struggle would be a bit of an understatement but I also feel like I’ve had to tackle worse things. The trip back to Essex County to live with my parents came with a sense of relief because we were actually moving … towards something. My parents generosity was really incredible as we’d likely still be hemmin’ and hawwin’ in Montreal pondering whether to sell everything we owned in order to start over or abuse our friendships in order to make our way to Ontario. But it was also sad. Because I wasn’t going to be the *Assistant Editor* of a culture paper. I was back to square one. Again.

We weren’t even back in the province for a week when we made arrangements to get ourselves to Toronto to head to Awn’s Celebration of Life. I found comfort in cozy things like hot dog stands and the Danforth but the weeks following were pretty much a blur of tying things up with the paper, frustrating job hunting and learning a tune for a much happier occasion, my pal Ryan’s wedding.

We were super chuffed to be asked to sing during their ceremony. Together we chose this tune:

But then we sang it like these ladies:

The ceremony was beautiful, the whole weekend actually was incredible. Ryan is one of my oldest pals. We met in the time of ICQ, via the internets, so to see how far we’ve come and to have a few moments to celebrate was sorely needed and an absolute treat. I’ve loved getting to know his wife Val and all her pals at the wedding were hella awesome. All the photos of the wedding were taken by the talented Juliette Capdevielle (including the one where I was enjoying the joys of tobacco (sorry mum!)) – you should probably go and like her page. Maybe she could capture your special day hmm?

So after a ride on the emo rollercoaster, we decided to have a holiday and join my parents up north in Sauble Beach for a week, where a) we chilled the fuck out and b) decided to make some decisions. And this was where we decided to give Windsor a bash.

We figured: Job hunting sucks everywhere at the moment. Windsor is close to family removing costs for planes, trains, buses for special events like Christmas and allowing for many more fam jams. Houses are all kinds of cheap in Windsor so our future goals are actually at our fingertips. Windsor is right next to Detroit so we won’t miss out on sweet concerts/tours and it’s on the same latitude line as northern California so it’s hella warm compared to pretty much the rest of Canada. Lots of wineries live here and a surprising amount of cute independent businesses. WHY NOT?

So refreshed, we started flat hunting and decided to put the cart before the horse and head out to Windsor, move in and then search for employment while residing in our new home. So much more about this move in my next post.

Roisin’s mum also turned 50 in July so we made her a video. I spared you the French Happy Birthday singin’ and such. But in case you’d find it amusing, enjoy:

So much more later…

April & May 2014: Melting snow, roller derby and Bombay Bicycle Club

October 15, 2014

2014 was a good year for live music. I forgot to mention that in early January we got to see Neutral Milk Hotel live. That show was out.stand.ing. I never thought I’d get to see them live. I have no photos or videos as we were asked not to take any – and I listened.

In early April we got to see Daughter again, but I have to admit that after seeing them in 2013 at a packed venue with a super enthusiastic crowd, I felt like the show at the Corona really didn’t hold up. It felt like their tunes were sped up and that they’d added extra and unnecessary instrumentation. I’d like to see them again to see if it was just that one show in particular that was a bit off.

April in Montreal this year was quite cold, so I spent some time photographing the snow-melting process and learning how to fishtail braid. When things started to warm up, the roller derby season also began. Roisin and I became pretty committed to watching the sport and supporting the fantastic New Skids on the Block.

news_skids_on_the_block_team_2012

I started some culinary experiments, we went on several epic walks around the city and we began discussing whether or not we should stay in Montreal or move elsewhere. Going to Niagara with Scott the previous month had somewhat ruled that area out as an option and although we love Toronto we weren’t willing to pay the price to live there. So we pondered for hours and hours while we walked about where we’d end up.

Roisin turned 23 and opted for a cheap cherry pie as her “cake” – to each their own. I chopped all my hair off, the snow finally melted by May and we did see Tegan & Sara live again at some point during the month. The importance of that event was shattered by us getting to see Bombay Bicycle Club for the first time. They are indeed my absolute favourite. So good live.

And we ended the month with what would end up being our final Montreal concert: The Courtneys. Where’d we go? Stay tuned.

The set list from the Bombay Bike Club show:
Overdone
It’s Alright Now
Shuffle
Come To
Your Eyes
Lamplight
Evening/Morning
How Can You Swallow So Much Sleep
Home By Now
Feel
Lights Out, Words Gone
Eyes Off You
Whenever, Wherever
Luna
Always Like This
So Long, See You Tomorrow

Encore:
What If
Carry Me

After the gig I got to say hello to Jack and I told him we’d chosen one of his tunes to walk down the aisle to which was pretty neat.

K

January – March 2014: JD Samson, hair experiments and a visit from Scott

October 3, 2014

2014 started out pretty awesome. Newly engaged, I went about my typical day to day while trudging through the Montreal winter. There was definitely an element of hibernation involved as no one really wants to brave -30 temperatures.

I watched the Oscars and got to weigh-in on some commentaries on the radio, continued with my hair colour experimentation and I got to check out LSTW‘s webseries Féminin/Féminin for work.

Around the end of the month I got to interview JD Samson about MEN’s latest album. This was the first music-related piece I did for Cult MTL, I was super stoked as I love Le Tigre.

Roisin made me a slightly corny and yet impressive Valentine’s Day gift and I decided to cut a weird fade into my hair. The best bit about the winter was when my BFF from Manchester, Scott, came to hang out.

As he’d never been to Canada before, I really wanted to help him tick a few boxes, so we did a bit of a whirlwind tour. Things didn’t get off on the best footing as his flight got delayed in NYC making him have to find a last minute hostel – winter weather here can really be unpredictable. When he finally made it into Toronto it was bloody freezing.

I took him to Niagara Falls then up to St. Catharines to check out my uni (where I also discovered that I have the best placement on the composite photo for the graduating class. Zing!). Then we went back to Toronto where we did some sightseeing, enjoyed a few beers and also surprised my pal Amanda who I hadn’t seen in ages with a delicious meal and later premature green beers as everyone was getting excited for St. Patrick’s Day. Roisin was not impressed with this beverage.

Then we returned to Montreal with Scott and did a ton of sightseeing there and had all the tea/coffee and cakes. It was amazing and I’m sad that I had to give him back :(

The rest of the month consisted of some gigs that Roisin played at a few venues and snow. Lots and lots of snow.

Not a bad start though I’d say.

K

PS- I have to say that although I went to uni in the Niagara region, I’d never seen the falls frozen like that. INSANE. It was so, so, so, cold that night but totally worth it.

 


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