Though I have left, I always hope to remain a minor patron saint, looking out for your interests and praying for your continued success. I offer this prayer for the use of any and all who wish the best for Montréal:
Heavenly Father/Mother/Monster/Controlling interests in Montréal!
With your graces and the force of our prayers:
May there be a renaissance in massive street blowouts on the Fête Nationale;
May the dépanneurs begin to stock tonic water, lest the consumption of gin and tonic be continually challenged;
May Montréal finally be recognized as the bagel capital of the world (sorry, New York);
To further clarify, may Fairmont Bagel triumph over Saint-Viateur Bagel;
May the Expo ’67 ruins last for all eternity as a reminder of those glorious days;
May what’s left of Mirabel airport sink into the ground as a bad memory;
May the Université du Québec à Montréal get some architectural facelifts to compete with its new sexy neighbour, the Bibliothèque Nationale;
May the Métro run at intervals shorter than 10 minutes between trains someday;
May the cost of pizza slices defy inflation and always be 99 cents;
May rent control never be allowed to become history;
May Saint-Laurent become a pedestrian-only street;
And may there at last be some real peace, and more importantly, profound intellectual and cultural exchange between the French and the English.
I’ll miss you, Montréal the city, but your inhabitants – leaving them was almost too much to bear. I’ll have to be back often.