We signed the lease and received the keys to our new apartment on stink street. We had nothing, no furniture, appliances, bedding, dishes, all we had were the clothes we had packed and two hard drives. Because it was Thursday, the stores were open late (one of my first rude awakenings was the opening hours of the stores. Only on Thursday and Friday evening do the stores stay open past five. However, this is changing now) and we went to St Denis st to the Futon shop to purchase our bedding, sheets and pillows. Serge got his old tv from his mom's house and we bought a bottle of champagne. We spent the first night in the apartment feeling splendid, the huge chore of finding a residence behind us. We also learned that we only got one channel with the TV antenna.
Now, if you want to have a real test of a relationship, especially a gay male relationship, what I suggest is this. Shop together for 3 days purchasing things with which you will furnish your home. You are starting from scratch, and one of you is charged with respecting budgets while the other is all about colour, quality and style. The car has to be returned in three days, so there is a deadline you must meet. I don't rightly know how we got through this without killing each other, maybe it was the nightly beer consuming. (The beer is strong here. American beer tastes watery to me now.)
(Segues are not my strong suit, but there should be one here.)
In order to live in Quebec when you immigrate to Canada, you must also be approved by Quebec's own immigration department, an extra hurdle to surpass. I received a letter asking me to appear for an interview in Quebec's immigration office in New York at the beginning of October. Both Serge and I were asked to attend, in order to verify our relationship. Woo hoo! A trip to New York. The interview was on Monday so of course we bought tickets to arrive on Friday, and called our friend Tom who has a place in Greenwich Village. Tom, the consumate party boy, had every drug imaginable in his little "goody bag". That was the last weekend that I ever did a number of drugs. What a way to prepare for the all important interview.
During the interview, we answered many questions and then the agent said that we were approved, but since the quota had already been exhausted for that year, mine wouldn't be sent until the beginning of January. I went back to Montreal jubilant again, approved! And went back to my French classes which I had started at the beginning of October. More on that in the next chapter.