Bonjour from Montreal!

Bonjour!  In case you are not keeping track at home, we are off on another family adventure.  This time to beautiful Montreal, Quebec in Canada.  We get to take advantage of my recently acquired Canadian citizenship to follow a really good opportunity for Chris.  We are just now getting settled into the city and are living in some temp housing for the time being.  All we know so far is that everything is different in Quebec, even the construction barrels are a different color than in Ontario.  English and French are both the official languages in Canada, and throughout Ontario (at least) all of the road signs are in both languages.  As soon as you cross into Quebec, that all stops and everything is just in French.

However, we have been able to get by with no problems.  Montreal is extremely bi-lingual, I would even argue that you hear more English than French.  When you walk into a store, you are greeted by the workers in both French and English, they usually say Bonjour, Hello.  Whichever you choose to answer back is the language they will talk to you in.  We hear that when you get off the island of Montreal, it gets a little more French, but we haven't ventured out quite yet.

Crossing the border was not hard at all.  It did take a few hours, but the immigration officers (we crossed the Detroit-Windsor border) were extremely helpful and nice.  I have citizenship, Sarah and the kids have temporary resident permits (valid for 18 months), and I will sponsor them to become permanent residents sometime soon.

In a few weeks we will move into a townhome that we will be renting in Pointe-Claire.  Pointe-Claire is West of downtown Montreal in an area known as the West Island.  It is primarily an English area set on Lake St. Louis.  Our home is right across the street from the lake and has awesome views off of two front patios.  It will be a little longer commute to work for Chris (about 45 minutes via train), but we really love the area, and are looking forward to getting settled in.

Chris will be working for EA again, this time at their BioWare studio which just opened in Montreal a few years ago.  BioWare was started in Edmonton about 15 years ago by two physicians who loved video games.  They had some success and eventually sold to EA less than ten years ago.  In that time they opened additional studios in Austin, TX (focused on a Star Wars game), and here in Montreal.  Up to now, the studio in Montreal has helped the Edmonton studio develop their games.  Now they are growing and taking on their own game.  Chris has accepted a role as Senior Development Director for the studio which is working on Mass Effect right now.  It is a really great opportunity here as he will be the second most senior person at the studio working with the General Manager and Executives in Edmonton to deliver the game.

Next steps are to get settled in, start work, and get the kids enrolled in school.  Should be a lot of fun, and we are certainly glad that we moved here in the summer and not the winter.

The news of Chris moving made more news than we expected.  Just remember that reporters don't always get it right or certainly have all of the info, I'm sure some of these people may have wrote or expressed unsavory comments.  Just goes with the territory, you have to be able to take it.


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