Today I went first thing in the morning to sign my lease contract. Yay! My first REAL appartement! I can’t wait to get the keys, hopefully on Friday.
I went to a little place on Saint Denis for breakfast. I will be so glad to have my own kitchen, since going out for food here is horribly expensive! (Minimum $20 per meal) The meal was good: Earl Grey fleur bleue (Cream of Earl Grey), Quiche Lorraine, et salade césare. The waitress was so nice and spoke French with me even after having to clarify something in English. Progress!
There was another microbrewery next to the Cafe. Must take Jay there!
I found out that to get my OPUS Metro pass, I need my student ID, a permission contract from the Conservatoire and a copy of my lease (Bonne chance que je viens de louer!! -Good thing I just started renting!). I have to pay $200 in cash for that at a specific Metro station that takes your photo (Berri UQAM). I feel like everything is in cash here! Rent, taxis, metro. It is so different than just taking my Visa everywhere in Vancouver and Washington State.
I finally cracked my flute out of the case and found an entire hidden hallway of practice rooms (again the hallway is disease-fluorescent green…. I can’t even describe how bad this colour is!). These practice rooms are AMAZING. They are like Five-star hotels of the practice world. I am sincerely impressed and will subsequently have to practice in them a lot!
After practicing I was cleaning my flute when my cleaning cloth got stuck inside of it! C’est dommage! Luckily it didn’t damage any keys, and I managed to go to a Quincaillerie (hardware store) and Magasin du couture (Sewing store) later and found some extra large tweezers and dowels to get the cloth out. Major crisis avoided!
Walking back to the school it was so hot (over 30 degress C) and I stopped in a shaded alley to cool off for a few minutes.
I also had my first Cours D’Analyse (Composition Analysis Class) with Serge and his other maitrîse student, Jonathan. We are going to be analyzing Tristan Murail’s work “Winter Fragments,” and “flotte bois” in comparison to Gérard Grisey’s “Quatre Chants pour franchir le seuil.” I didn’t quite understand what my homework was, but I am just going to analyze as much as I can before next Tuesday and show it to him in my private lesson on Monday. I was surprised how much of the hour of French lecture I understood, but I am sure I missed a few things, and they may have been quite important. I hope I learn more French quickly!
Afterwards I sat in the park by the school for an hour and enjoyed the breeze. Things I have noticed a lot in Quebec: Quebec flags, U-turns (EVERYWHERE, ANYTIME!), blatant jay walking, graffiti, construction on almost every street corner, and cat calling. I actually got whistled at like someone would call a dog today. The guy was so persistent I lost my temper and turned around and yelled at him about sexist discrimination. He was quite put off by that; I guess that wasn’t the usual response! Some of the graffiti is really interesting though. This one stood out to me when I passed it this morning:
I went out for dinner with my lovely friend Nadia at Aux Vivres. We talked about French school, the scene at McGill in the music faculty, and apartment problems. We are planning an Ikea trip for the first after next to get me a bunch of furniture and drink some wine while assembling it. I’m looking forward to that already!
Tomorrow is my first day of German. I am interested to see how that goes down! Until then, I will endure the slow-cooker night in my auberge!