After five years, goodbye to the apartment on De Malines street, 20 seconds away from Sherbrooke metro.
This is the place :
Where I simply knocked on the door when I saw the ad for the room.
Where Leanne, a West Coast free spirit with the most beautiful full back tattoo you have ever seen, snuggled with her cat Charlie, played video games, and got into Physiotherapy school, all while finding time to sew together a giant fabric pickle that would hold the plastic bags.
Where Eiméar, the endlessly charismatic Irish historian, charmed the whole city in the first week of her arrival, then dived deep into her doctorate and a heartfelt relationship. Where she gave me a hug when I needed it most.
Where Grace shared true sweet mango from Singapour and taught English to Chinese students at 6 a.m.
Where Eric spilled soup mix on the floor and didn’t clean it up, a sign of things to come.
Where innumerable tea pots were forgotten on the stove.
Where Karine bloomed, discovered she loved women, and met her first girlfriend…and then her second.
Where a thief took a computer in the middle of the night, reminding us to lock the door.
Where Charline dazzled with her smile, securing the smallest room.
Where the landlord ignored our pleas to repair the kitchen floor or the gaping holes in the ceiling after a dramatic water leak (which he also ignored).
When Nicole had real conversations and tested how raw she could go, while celebrating with contact improv.
When Megan revealed her wild artistic past through video, and gave the biggest hugs.
Where we dined with gentle music and soft flickering candles.
Where Élyse dreamed of the wonderful sculptures she would create.
Where musicians would stop by on their travels and share their art, their alcohol and their stories.
Where Côme the mage disovered his passion for snakes while his boyfriend discovered his own passion for fish.
Where dishes were cleaned, left to pile up, broken, replaced, loved and forgotten.
Where Nikhil nurtured plants, cooked the most delicious meals, and taught me that whole spices were a thing.
Where I got my first plants; two flourished and one dramatically died, leaf by leaf.
Where night revelers relieved themselves on the wall below every Friday and Saturday.
Where my family lay on the floor of my room, laughing and reveling.
Where Liana dazzled with her hoola hoop skills and drew on the walls.
Where the police walked in to stop the party with blinding flashlights while we were in a giant cuddle puddle on the bed.
When Nico put aside a cheese budget for every week and drank and laughed late into the night.
Where Kristina came in a dazzling whirlwind from Germany and experienced the whole city.
Where Geoffrey biked around with his unusual best friend and smiled perfectly.
Where Ewan, the delightful Scottish musician, stumbled in on a cold winter’s night after his possessions were stolen from his car, after which he stole everyone’s heart.
Where a new roommate moved in and said 5 minutes later they needed to go to the pharmacy, and never returned.
Where Midori was quiet and clean, and worked until 4 a.m. before waking up for French classes. Where she learned her grandmother was ill and cancelled everything to return to Japan.
Where Kato did live stream yoga in the living rooms and built community, every day.
Where I ate dense cinnamon buns and began gleefully rolling around on the living room floor.
Where bathroom scheduling always seemed to work.
Where Simon taught kickboxing, jammed away on his electric guitar and harmonica, got us addicted to pull-ups, and made an animated music video with the high speed internet.
Where crêpes were a mainstay.
Where morning deliveries to the neighboring restaurants rumbled and beeped.
Where Roya, the famous local breakdancer, counted her loot on the front steps with her crew and drank lemon water in the summer heat.
Where our neighbours invited us to loud, drunken parties with guacamole and chips.
Where we hung out when we wanted to and didn’t when we didn’t.
Where Jun shared his plan to get rich, really rich.
Where we all lived our days truly and deeply, and then slept. A lot.
This place was in a non-neighbourhood, a transitory line that thousands crossed every day. Its rhythm was unique and never static. And it was my place. The place I loved and loved to share for so many years, and for all of it I am grateful❤️.