That’s one of my favorite French words, by the way. It means, “solace, relief, ease…”

And it’s exactly what I got from my visit to Montreal. The not-conducive-to-tourism weather was a blessing in disguise. It slowed me down. It crossed things off the list. It meant that I didn’t feel “guilty” about sleeping in, napping, and lounging around instead of going, seeing, doing. After a whole semester of having to hop to it, I didn’t have to do a darned thing that I didn’t want to. Bliss.

Which doesn’t mean I spent the whole weekend indoors. I got to meet a blog friend who is as delightful in person as she is over the Web, to play trains in French with her small son, and to hold her new, tiny daughter. (I’m happy to report that I’ve still got my baby hypnotizing skills. That child was zorked out within moments of landing in my arms.) Plus she made me peanut butter bars. And I got to remember that peanut in French is “arachide.” I’d lost that bit of vocabulary somewhere… It was a grand afternoon!

As promised, my lovely and amazing hostess S. took me to eat all kinds of yummy food. (Olive et Gourmando – there are no words.) She laid in supplies of my favorite breakfast foods. And she introduced me to a few of her friends, who were charming. (Confidential to S.: I’m sure they’re all charming. I just haven’t met the others yet. Next time.)

She was also the soul of patience while I noodled around in drugstores (see yesterday’s post) and took endless pictures outdoors in the cold and snow. Here’s another:

The Expo 67 apartments, viewed from Old Montreal

All in all, I couldn’t have had a better time. And I can’t wait to visit again!