Wed, 09 Nov 2005

Discovering Montréal

It's been a week since I arrived in Montréal, and had not had a free minute to blog about it. There's tons of things to write about, the activity and fun has been mostly non-stop.

The travelling wasn't perfect, as always I could not sleep a single minute. Instead, I watched Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, which I had wanted to see for some time and was nice, and Batman Begins, which was positively surprising, being a Batman movie.

When I arrived at Montréal's airport, the fun started soon enough. Coming from Spain and having this scary looking face and beard didn't help much to survive customs. When I got in the line and handed my arrival card, I was sent to the immigration office straight away. I was asked what I was coming to Canada for. "To a computer conference", I said. Well, having no "invitation" or anything for this conference made me a quick suspect. After being freed, I walked on my way out, and on the next control, I had my bag searched. And again... "Do you have any document about this conference?". And then, to the real baggage inspection room.

As the guy started opening my bag, I suddenly remembered about the fuet I was carrying for Vicente, while I had said, confidently, "No I don't carry any food" in my card. Luckily he saw I was carrying a DragonLance book, liked it and let me go.

The next thing was, while waiting for the bus that should take me to Downtown Montréal, my first conversation with a non-airport staff Canadian. So this old woman in her seventies comes along... and the first thing she says... "I hate those fucking moslems". I try to not look too much like "WTF!?" and without replying, listen to this totally moronic and racist monologue about how moslems in Canada come to the country to not work and live of the country's welfare. "Why should they work? They stay at home, and watch TV and fuck. That's all they do. The more kids they have, the more money they get. I don't believe in welfare". So I got on the bus quite shocked.

After a bus trip and lots of walking due to forgetting I had to get on another one, I got into the hotel, and started meeting all the people. My first dinner was with Gustavo, Salgado and Carlos, and I felt I wanted to die, I couldn't keep my eyes open. The conference started next morning for me, and has been the usual dynamic as always, only that now it's the first time that I really find myself somewhat useful during the sessions. :)

Meeting mdz and kiko happened that morning. That was when all kinds of stuff started to happen. Why do I have to get such bad influences?

Kiko and I managed to not fall over while taking all of these pics in Mont Royal