This summer, I made a promise to my boyfriend: We’d go biking together. The thing is that I hadn’t been on a bike in at least 10 years. I was secretly terrified and kept putting it off until it felt silly to do so. There was no way I would dare to ride on the city streets, even on the well designed bike paths. We found the perfect spot for me to feel comfortable as I straddled the rental bike, looking like a little kid learning to ride for the first time: the Musée plein-air de Lachine (Lachine outdoor museum).
It’s that time of the year again! As soon as the weather lets us trade our down jackets and giant snow boots for tees and flipflops, most of us Montrealers feel this urgent need to get out of our house. During those short summer months where we can actually stay outside for more than 15 minutes without freezing our noses off, we like to spend as much time as possible outdoors.
Alright, I’m exaggerating a little bit about that last part. We do go out in the winter, but there’s nothing like a warm and sunny day in Spring to re-energize us and put a smile back on our face.
On Sundays, it sometimes seems like half the city’s population is in a park. The most popular one is Mont-Royal park(and the adjoining Jeanne-Mance park), a great place to have a picnic, do some hiking, hop on a bike and enjoy beautiful views of the city.
People also gather here for two very unique activities that are held each and every Sunday from April to October.
First, there’s the tam-tams.
Every summer since 1978, hundreds of people have met at the Sir Georges Étienne Cartier sculpture to hold a giant drum circle. It’s hard to know exactly how many drummers take part in the jam session, but if you count the numerous dancers and simple onlookers, it can go up in the thousands.
A little bit higher up on the hill, a group of people calling themselves the warriors of the mountain meet up to hold friendly combats. They fight with foam swords, so not to actually hurt each other. Nevertheless, their battles are to be taken seriously!