Due to roadwork, last year the Montreal St. Patrick’s Day parade was moved from its usual route. Instead of wending its way east on Ste-Catherine Street it was shifted one street north to deMaisonneuve AND for some reason flowed from east to west.
I have enough Irish blood coursing through my veins to be somewhat superstitious – or stupidstitious if you prefer. Such a radical change must have played hell with the “Little people” and Banshees who, once they found the parade, now had to walk directly into the late winter sun. Is it any surprise that within a week of this traditional transgression Montreal’s biggest Irish pub burned to the ground? I think not.
Fast forward to last month. Not one, but two of Montreal’s Christmas icons were, for no doubt seemingly logical reasons, missing. For decades the Ogilvy’s store had a Christmas window display, complete with moving parts. It always drew a crowd on the sidewalk and was a part of many families’ tradition. In fairness, the Ogilvy’s window displays were viewable at a local museum, but that’s just not the same as the street corner sight.
The second classic MIA was the huge Christmas tree on the plaza of Place Ville Marie. The complex is undergoing major renovations and I assume there was no place to put up the lights that form the tree. Nonetheless, there was no tree facing up McGill College Avenue this year.
Here’s hoping that now that the Christmas season is over if there are any cranky elves or gnomes they are sleeping and not plotting revenge like the leprechauns did. Then again, I don’t think there are any Christmas pubs!