Goodbye Montreal! (again...)

Trip Start Oct 18, 2007
Trip End Aug 2008

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Flag of Canada  , Quebec,
Friday, September 5, 2008

Greetings dearest family and friends in all corners of the globe!

I've been meaning to update my blog in awhile, but a lot has happened since returning to Montreal in late July!  Most of my first month back in my city consisted of catching up with my people: "pasalubong"-ing, swimming, housewarming, birthday partying, lunching, dinnering, talking (lots of that!), laughing...Quebec city-ing (yes, that is a VERB, especially if it's to celebrate the 400th Birthday of this lovely city) with my GigglesGalore, salsa and tango dancing, poonchy-poonchy-ing (aka: clubbing), movie watching, live music listening, cooking, pot-lucking, and photo walking.  I also made my way to see family in Toronto (miss you very much Ate Flo, Shir, Dayle, Hendryck!!) and Kingston (congrats again Anne-Anne and Jay!  See ya in May 2009!!) and caught up with them as well, which was awesome and very much long overdue

This 9-month trip has not only been a physical, external journey but one of deep introspection as well.  Don't get me wrong... I partied and had lots of fun meeting people from around the world, reconnecting with both sides of my family in the States and the Philippines, crashing weddings and couches, travelling with a good friend, being awed by architecture and history, and eating wonderful FOOOD wherever I went!  All of it lovely and educational distractions.  At the same time, this trip gave me the physical distance and emotional perspective to take stock of where I am at this point of my life, what and who I want in it and where I want to be.  I've also learned that adventures like this don't answer or resolve those heavy life questions...  Trips aren't suppose to do that!  That's a personal task that needs to be done, mindfully and very consciously, not haphazardly while sightseeing.

I've since resigned from Concordia University in Montreal as an undergraduate admissions counsellor for the Business School (I'll never forget my team: Wawa, MaryLal, Danie and Ilze!!).  I'm now in Vancouver, having moved here in early September, to join Mikey, my long-time love.  He is also a Montrealer and made the move out west back in last January.  Our rollercoaster love story spans over a decade but even after a year apart, we still couldn't forget each other and are back together with deeper appreciation of the irreplaceable thing we've got.

This West (read: Wet!) Coast city is far from unfamiliar.  Concordia sent me out here from 2003-05 to recruit for prospective undergrad students so I recognize the lay of the land.  Plus my godsister, Elisse and her man, Jimbo, have been great friends and so supportive.  Snowy sunny cold east coast winters will be replaced by temperate rainy grey ones.  Should be an interesting change.  Don't worry!  I packed my raincoat and umbrella (or two!).

I barely got back to Montreal before my friends were graciously throwing me the second going away party in less than a year and I was packing my bags once again.  I will miss my gang dearly, but am comforted that they're just a phone call (and 3hr timezone difference and 5.5 hr flight!) away.  I'm also that much closer to my California relatives and my family in the Philippines...  YAAAY!  (I told you guys I would not let another 10 years pass before my next visit...  I PROMISE!)

Looks like this blog formerly known as "Westward Around the World Without Winter" has officially come to an end, while a new adventure begins...  here in Vancouver.
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