You know when you travel to a place you've never been before, you seem to notice things that are out of place, odd, crazy, different and very cool? I have mentally compiled such a list in the almost 2 weeks we have been living in Quebec City......some are constructive suggestions on how to improve life for tourists and foreigners such as us and others are just mere observations about this place that is so different from the rest of Canada......
1. You cannot turn right while at a red light.....seriously inefficient and a major patience testing rule!! I suggest an immediate revision of this traffic law. :)
2. Phil and I thought that we at least had the french word "Oui" (which means "yes") totally downpat before living here...turns out you need to sound like you are a quacking duck (minus the "q" and "ck" sound) when you say that word....after much practise....we are now experts at the "quack". :)
3) If you are over the age of 65, you will most definitely be in seriously good shape and participate in exercise such as biking, running, rollerblading, speed walking etc....Phil and I are aspiring to add at least one of those activities into our days.....so we can keep up with the Seniors! :)
4) The speed limit on the highways is 100 km/hour, yet no one drives faster than that....in fact we are among the fastest drivers when we are obeying the speed limit....it is killing Phil that everyone drives slower than the speed limit!
5) Beaver Tails will never get old! Queue de Castor anyone??
6) No Frills Grocery Store is called Maxi, and Shoppers Drug Mart is called Parma-prix and good ole' IGA is the same here....and just as expensive!
7) Looking for "old" cheddar cheese in the grocery store??? NOPE!! Just mild and medium cheddar......which is probably a sign that we should investigate some of the other thousands of gourmet cheeses that French culture has to offer....YUM!
8) Everyone in Quebec that we have met (minus a few exceptions) are very eager to switch to speaking English so they can practise (after hearing our brutal accents) which is nice for us as it allows us to actually understand what people are saying.....however.....not so helpful as we are trying to practise our french!! Sometimes we continue to try to speak in french, and other times we succumb to the ease of a conversation in English.
9) People are curious once they hear us speak......not so much in the downtown area as there are so many tourists and languages present but once you step into the suburbs......people are intrigued as to why we are here....and what a great opportunity to tell them why! :) in french of course! :)
Well, gotta run.....Les Nouvelles awaits.....our homework for tonight! (to watch the news in french)