When you walk along St. Laurent, a main thoroughfare actually known as "The Main", English and French cohere seamlessly. People move from language to language, from deli (some of the best in the world - some say better than in New York, gasp!) to bistro, from the underground to the mainstream. It's got a kind of energy I've rarely experienced anywhere else. And when you add in Quebec's distinct brand of ice-cold-freezing-scary winter, it gets somehow even more lively. It's like Montrealers, born or bred, are wired to enjoy every layer of human existence. When you visit Montreal, you fall into the mix.
We went to L'Express for dinner on a Saturday evening. It's institutional bistro (for want of a better way of putting it), always packed. There's no sign out front (though I seem to remember there is an inlay in the cement saying "L'Express"). I guess you either know it's there or you don't.
Before we ate, we took a little walk...
Everywhere you go, you will see people eating on tiny balconies. They take the weather while it's good here.