Olivia and I headed up to Montreal last weekend for the Kinetik Music Festival. This was our second trip to the city, and I have to say that it's a fantastic place. The city's vibe is somewhere between New York and San Francisco, if you can picture that. There's a lot of Euro-style architecture and it seems to always be hopping. This year, since we went later in the spring, there were tourists everywhere, checking the place out. If you ever go, the one and only spot that you MUST VISIT is Montreal Pool Room on St. Laurent. This is a 24 hour diner whose specialty is poutine. They don't even have a pool table in the place. The guy behind the counter doesn't really speak English, as Olivia discovered last year at 4 am, when we drunkenly stumbled in and she asked for a cheeseburger. "Cheeseburger no. Poutine?" was his reply. Well, how about a hotdog? "Poutine?" Umm... poutine. If you don't know what poutine is, Google it. It sounds like a disgusting version of Jersey's disco fries, but is, in fact, awesome junk food. It didn't amaze me the first time I tasted it, but I think that's because I was sober. For this trip, I didn't stay that way much.
So, we headed up on Friday, and it rained for almost the entire trip. It actually stopped just before we got to the border and we were passed through with no problems, unlike some folks I know. We'd brought a bottle of vodka and a bottle of wine, each under a liter as is allowed, but weren't even asked if we had anything to declare. The only thing I was asked was whether we had any weapons in the car. Since my razor-sharp wit was my only armament I replied "no" and we were promptly passed through. After only a little arguing over translating roadsigns, we made it to the hotel around 6:15ish and met the Brutsquad that preceded us there; Dominico, Phil, Jackie, Bobbie, her friend Herman, and her boytoy for the weekend Rocky. Dominico, Phil, and Jackie were to be our roommates for the weekend, and they helped us drag our stuff upstairs to our room. Which was right next to the room we stayed in last year, which was kinda cool. We started unpacking our stuff, when Olivia realized that the AC didn't work in the room. Wunderbar. A quick call to the front desk got us moved to a new room. The same one we were in last year. No problems there. So, we started drinking.
We were joined by a few more friends, and friends of friends, had a few to get started and then walked the 15-or-so blocks to the venue, Usine C, to go to the festival. Usine was a cool place, with three usable floors. The upstairs area was taken up by overpriced vendors, the middle was where the performance space (which was gigantic) was, and there was a bar downstairs, where our only choices were whiskey, vodka, and rum. Mixers were soda, orange juice, and cranberry juice. Not much of a bar. But, at least the drinks weren't terribly overpriced. Now, I know a bunch of bands played, but the only one that sticks in my mind at all is Funker Vogt, and I was actually a bit disappointed in them. They weren't terrible, but I was hoping for a lot more. After the show we made our way back to the room and crashed out.
On Saturday we woke up and went our separate ways. Olivia, Phil, and I wandered down Rue Ste Catherine to find food. St. Cat's is a cool lace to hang out. There's a wide selection of little shops and restaurants to choose from, and also a lot of sex shops. We hit up a little Lebanese joint and each got too much food for under $8 each. After wandering around for a bit we hit up the super market and liquor store and headed back to our room.
Part 2, in which there are jaeger bombs, broken beds, and mosh pits will come later.