Instead of spending my first week in Montréal, I spent it in Sorel with Alex and his parents. Now you’re probably thinking, “where the hell is Sorel?” Sheesh, how could you not know?! But really, don’t feel bad because I thought the same thing too. No worries though! Here are a few “riveting” facts about the good ol’ city of Sorel.
- Sorel boots are in fact NOT made in the city of Sorel
- The quaint city of Sorel is home to approximately 34,600 people
- It’s the fourth oldest city in the Quebec province
- It’s actually officially called Sorel-Tracy as a result of a voluntary amalgamation in 2001 between the two cities. And according to Alex it’s now also unofficially referred to as “Sorhell”
Suffering from jet-lag and the cold weather, I basically spent my first week hibernating like a lobster in the fridge anyways. Just kidding. More like half of the time. But poor Alex probably felt like he was driving a corpse around while sight seeing.
Looking back on my first week, being in Sorel was probably the best and worst place to be. Known as a bit of a francophone city and the opposite of multicultural, walking around the malls there made me feel way more self-conscious and out of my comfort zone than I had expected. On the other hand, I liked how exposed I was to the Quebec culture and language. After all, isn’t that the point of travelling?
Aside from visiting local shopping centres, I was also able to go on pleasant forest walks, go fishing, visit neighbouring towns with interesting stories, witness a burning car and drive past dead animals. Which reminded me of the time I tried the “BeanBoozled” jelly bean challenge – you know, the one with the horrible flavours like skunk spray and barf. Well, I remember thinking I had never smelt a skunk before… Now I have.
Nevertheless, my first week abroad in Quebec exceeded my expectations and opened up my eyes to a whole new culture and way of life. I wouldn’t have had it any other way!