Thursday, April 13, 2006

A Recent Visit to Montreal

Marty, I was in Mtl and GFPK last week and as I had a little extra time I thought that I would take a drive along St. Catherine Street starting at Greene Ave through to Union Ave. Unfortunately I didn't have a camera with me but the following observations are in my mental camera and for the benefit of your subscribers who have not been home in some time they are as follows:

(1) The venerable Forum as shown on your site a couple of weeks ago would not be recognizable to anyone who had ever been to that grand building,what a shame.

(2) The section from Atwater to Ste. Mathieu is really ratty and rundown with many storefronts boarded up and the Seville Theatre where I took my date to my first ever live show-- The Four Lads in 1956-- was ready for the wreckers ball.The one redeeming factor of that mess was that The Cock N' Bull , a favourite hang out of mine appeared to be still operating. The general condition improves greatly as you move west to east.

(3) Radio Station CJAD , where I stopped to pick up a cassette copy of Paul Reid's Christmas broadcast is now located at the corner of Fort and Ste. Catherine having moved from it's long time location on Mountain St.

(4) Ogilvy's, which had the best Christmas displays is still operating but Simpson's no longer exists although the building is still there.

(5) The Eaton's building is also still in place but is home to The Gap, Navy and other chain stores and Morgan's which was taken over by The Bay still presides over the corner of Ste Catherine and Union St at Phillips Square.Despite the current status I still felt very much at home as I drove down the Street.

PS what probably made me feel at home was the drivers and pedestrians , they haven't changed. As an add-on re John Riley's photos, Mr Conrad owner of the house ran a firewood business in the Park for a number of years, operating out of one of the barns behind "Doc" Perras' little house. I frequently had my haircut at Mr. Biel's barbershop which he ran out of his house and which probably accounted for the fact that he was five or ten cents cheaper that Bud "the barber" Hollingdrake.

Thanks John McC.
I miss Montreal as I had a lot of fun in that great city years ago..

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