Downtown is loud, busy, and every single road is under construction. The only exception is in Old Montreal, where every second road is being repaired.
The weather is weird: muggy, mid-30s, and with no visible sun, only a great expense of grey sky overhead. The air is so heavy with humidity I feel like I am walking around with a hot wet towel draped across my shoulders.
The city is also quite large, and I reach my 10,000 steps before mid day each day. And fun — there are at least two festivals going on while I’m here: Just for Laughs and African Nights. It is hilly; my butt muscles ache after a day of walking up up up to the Manoir Sherbrooke Hotel. (Very nice place, with reasonable rates, it’s in three historic houses join together and beautifully maintained. Filling buffet breakfast included).
The first night I push back a jet leg to attend AURA, a sound and light show inside the Notre Dame cathedral in Old Montreal. Fortunately, I can sit for most of it and it is good enough that I don’t feel tired until it’s over. One more hill to climb before I give in to the exhaustion and sleep very soundly until early morning.
I continue exploring. Walk down rue St Denis, wander through Old Montreal, drink fresh lemonade, gays in shop windows. Avoid falling into construction pits.
And then suddenly it is time to go to the train station to travel westward.