Hey, Jordan here! Once Ottawa was behind us, we headed to Montreal, still travelling at a max. speed of 60km/h. We ended up in the back parking lot of Bethel Baptist Church for a good sleep, about 20 minutes from downtown Montreal.
When we woke up, the people heading into church were staring at the RV, obviously wondering what could possibly be contained inside. When four nicely dressed, civilized, slick, respectable young men came out of the hippymobile, people were pleasantly surprised and we were warmly welcomed. I guess we clean up nice.
We met some great people and were secretly hoping that someone would take us in for a nice mothers day lunch. That was when we met Irene. As we were discussing amongst ourselves about how we should ask if we could use the church kitchen to cook our lunch, Irene asked us if we wanted to come to her place for a bite to eat. Instant answer to prayer! Irene is a wonderful lady, so wonderful in fact, that she drives folks to and from church, gives meals to strangers like us, and even lets those strangers use her shower!
Irene invited a man from church named Constant, his wife, and their friend's three-year-old child, Oulda to lunch with us. Constant and his wife came to Canada 8 months ago from West Africa. He studied computer science and has been working in IT for over 20 years now. Currently they are waiting for their three children to be approved to come to Canada.
We had some awesome conversations with Constant, his wisdom was much appreciated. He does translating at the Church, so his English is very good and I taught him some guitar. Oulda had an awesome time playing with Dylan and when she attempted to teach him french, it proved to be quite comical, as almost all of Dylan's responses were: "Je ne sais pas!"
Irene was so happy at how friendly a bunch of young 20 year-olds were, and how much we wanted to talk. I hope we made her mothers day a little extra special.
After our much needed showers, we said our "au-revoirs" and headed downtown to visit our friends Emily and Katie.
The hills in Montreal proved to be just gradual enough for Lily in her weakened state and she pulled through when we needed her most. We met Emily and Katie at their church, Initiative 22, just after 6 o'clock. The service was great: Dwight's message, the worship, and I personally found the communion to be a very centering time of reflection. The church is right downtown in a retail space and just started in September, their focus on the gospel, community, and mission was inspiring work.
We then headed to 1900 Tupper, Emily and Katie's place, for a meal. Their beautiful 4th floor apartment proved to be a great spot to relax. Jer, Dylan, and myself know Emily from High School, and Calvin and Jer know Kinsey (Emily and Katie's roommate who was out of town) from Camp Mini-Yo-We, no one knew Katie, but we got to know her. Great conversation, delicious spaghetti prepared by Katie, and a Skype conversation with Kinsey completed our evening. Check out their blog here.
Now it's off to Quebec City!