Thursday, July 2, 2009
While the rest of Canada is busy celebrating Canada Day on July 1st, we Montrealers have a tradition of our own that we "celebrate" every July 1st: Moving Day (yes with the capital M and capital D).
Before 1974 there was no law saying when the yearly leases on apartments in Montreal should end, but unofficially many of them ended on April 30th, hence many families had to move before the school year ended and it was a headache for all those with children. So, in January 1974 a court ruled that all leases ending April 30th would now be valid until the end of school year (June 30th). This ladies and gentlemen was the birth of Moving Day.
About 10 years ago, I had the best apartment in the city, it was falling apart, the gas leaked frequently, I lived on top of a Shish Taouk restaurant, the floors were caving in and my neighbors were coke dealers, but it was the best apartment in the damned city! I remember moving into to that place: 5 flights of crooked stairs. I also remember that I didn't check what time it was when we showed up with the truck... We arrived on the corner of my streets (St-Catherine and St-Mathieu) only to find out that the Canada Day Parade wasn't over yet... So here we are carrying my couch in the rain THROUGH the parade and up five floors to my rickety apartment. The whole move took about 3 hours... it was bad. But I loved that apartment, right in the heart of the city I love...
Moving day is also a day where friends that you haven't heard from in years, all of a sudden call you out of the blue and invite you over for "beer and pizza" on July 1st(that is the code name for "help-me-move-my-gigantic-fridge-down-my-spiral-staircase-because-none-of-my-real-friends-want-to-help". It is typical if you're a push over, or a sucker, or have too many friends, or if you're just a nice guy to have 2 or 3 major moves including your own starting June 3th at like 9pm and ending July 1st at 10pm.
So happy moving day everyone! Happy Canada Day! and to all those who called me yesterday and didn't get answer because I'd turned my phone off, I hope all your moves went great! And remember, if you want my help try calling me before July 1st...