Went up there last weekend for an Army of Two: The 40th Day community event, possibly the first of many. It was the first time I’d been to the city. You never get a chance to really check out the cities you visit at events like these, what with the usual hectic schedule, but I thankfully got some free time to walk around in my off time. Really dug what I saw, and here’s a little list of things I noticed.

– It sure is a quiet city. For a place so crowded it’s strange to not hear cars honking and people yelling. Then again, I’m used to NYC, so…

– There’s one big problem with having the legal drinking age set at 18. It’s not what you’d expect, though, the biggest problem is one of embarrassment. Waiting for my car to the hotel, I was sitting at a bar having a beer when a guy pulled up a seat near me. The bartender turned to him and said “Hey, you can’t sit here unless you’re 18.” The guy looked taken aback. “I’m 25!” Ouch.

– Canadians apparently like hockey! The things you learn! So many cars flying pennants, people talking about the games, even a guy wearing a helmet and cape.

– Too many friggin’ tourists. It’s the bane of my existence whenever I travel out of the country- I inevitably end up surrounded by drunken loundmouth asshole Americans. It makes me cringe. Then again, this weekend was also hockey playoffs and a huge UFC match, which led to streets swarmed by hockey fans and huge MMA types looking for a fight. Quite a crowd.

– Cubans are legal! I don’t even know why I didn’t think they wouldn’t be, it was just a pleasant surprise. Picked up a couple of Romeo y Julietas.

– Keith’s makes a pretty tasty beer. Dug both red and blonde varieties.

– According to our waiter at a fine restaurant nearby, the best strip clubs around there were completely hands on, letting you touch anything “except for the honey pot”. Also “for 80 bucks she’ll touch you with her mouth, and for 120 she’ll touch you with her insides.” Oh, how we couldn’t stop laughing. The French Canadian accent probably made it better.

– Speaking of, there’s about 3 stripclubs for every church in this city, and there are a LOT of goddamn churches. (Huge old ones. Even the second-biggest one in the world.) Course, it looked like more people were headed to stripclubs. A lot of them have hawkers outside letting you know how much more you can touch their girls than their competitors.

– Having both English and French as your languages leads to lot of strange double talk. Every time you were greeted it was by “Bonjour, hello!”, as people tested out just what you were.

– It seems that lots more people smoke, although that might just be the French influence. Lot of people smoking more than tobacco, as well.
– At two different places I saw porta-potties up on scaffoldings on the side of buildings. Wha?

– Customs and security is so much more relaxed up there. I don’t mean that in a “Hey, they let me bring this machete on board!” way, but in that they’re not barking and yelling at you nonstop.

– Can’t wait to go back.