Well, summer is coming to a close, Rainy season is hitting us quite hard, and soon the rain will turn to snow. Not looking forward to Winter, it will be my 4th Winter here on the Island… 11-12, 12-13, 13-14 and now 14-15… WHen I look back over the last 979 days here, it’s a mess of everything mixed together. I have had 2 major jobs, first working for the UPS Store #350 in Dorval, which is the reason I came to Island in the first place. Before the Island I lived in Cornwall and the contract I was on at StartTek was not being renewed, which means myself, along with 400 other Call Service Reps (CSR) would be out of a job. Now I had worked as a CSR for about 8 years on and off, I was getting sick of it. So it was time for a change. Now I did apply to other places, one of which was SigmaPoint, a circuit bord manufacturer in Cornwall, they loved my résumé, the loved my interview, they offered me a job, just not at that moment, as they were under a hiring freeze… They didn’t know how long. I couldn’t wait to find out either. So an Ex-Coworker of mine from another call center offered me a job at his UPS Store in Montreal. It took a me a while to think it over. It would mean a giant leap into the unknown, changing Provinces is not like changing cities within a province. I mean you move from Ottawa to Toronto, what changes? Your address… Nothing really… Change Provinces though, not only does your address change, but your Drivers License, Health Card, and Tax info all change, and sometimes it’s not easy to make the transfer. You have to have paper work upon paper work to get changed over. After a week or so, I decided I was gonna take the leap.
I spent the first 6 months living in a rented room on a nice quiet street in Dorval, about a 30 minute walk from Work. I was working part-time, minimum wage, so affording a Bus pass was not in the cards. After that the Boss and I got a place as roommates just down the street from work. It was mutually beneficial, I no longer had to walk for 30 minutes and he no longer had to spend an hour in traffic coming from his father’s place in Laval.
After 8 months working at the UPS Store, I wanted a bit of a change, I needed more money, min wage just wasn’t enough to have fun in Montreal. I started to look for another part-time job to get some extra hours, however I didn’t find any. What I did find though, was a job in my field at the only Anglophone Library in Montreal. I lucked out big time. I still stayed with my buddy for a bit living in Dorval, but I had to move closer to work. You see the Library was in Downtown Montreal, and I lived in one of the suburbs, it used to take me an hour by bus and metro to get into work. So a year and a half after moving to the island, I said good-bye to Dorval, and moved Downtown.
Shortly after moving downtown came the Political Crisis which would take away the power from the Hitleresque Marois who wanted to turn Quebec into is a French Only society where English Speakers were not welcome. This of course soon ended as she was booted out of power when it came time to vote. It has been the first time since I was 18, that I felt the need to vote.
Now I am attending Dawson College, along side working for the Library, as I wasnt to get my Certifications for Microsoft SErver 2012, Cisco and Linux. It’s a long journey that is just about half over. I am also done the MS Certification course and in November I go back for Cisco and Linux, which will take another 6 months.
So, the 979 days here on the Island have been a blast. I have had more fun in those 979 days than the previous 11.891 days of my life. Don’t get me wrong, there were many fun times in those days, but I have never felt more alive, more energetic. Montreal just has this… aura about it. Its alive, not like any other city I have every been to. I am still an outside though. I am an Anglophone, living in a Francophone province. There is a limit to my options, but you best better bet that I will make the most of what options I do have. I plan to work here at the Library for at least another few years, get my experience up, then maybe move on to something bigger.