Not going to lie, I write about Ahuntsic a whole lot. Not only is it my home borough (my ho-bro?), but it's also a really great place to visit. And live in. Of course, nobody knows this better than those of us who actually grew up in Ahuntsic. Those of us who remember a time before Marché Central and condo complexes everywhere know that Ahuntsic was an awesome place to get to grow up in. But no place is perfect. Here are 10 Struggles Of Growing Up In Montreal's Ahuntsic.
1. Explaining to people where you live.
Real talk, for some reason not that many people know where Ahuntsic is. To make matters worse, many of us who proudly call Ahuntsic home don't actually live in Ahuntsic. We live in Sault-au-Recollet, Cartierville, Bordeaux, or any one of Ahuntsic's many districts. But, you know. Good luck explaining that to a non-Ahuntsician.
2. Spending your Saturday nights at Cinéma Guzzo Marché Central.
Let's be straight up for a second: back in the day, was this not the highlight of your weekend? I still remember when they first opened Cinéma Guzzo in Marché Central and we no longer had to trek to Lacoridaire or Laval. I honestly think it was the highlight of my young life.
3. Seeing everyone you know at the public pool.
You probably know which public pool I'm talking about, too, since it seemed like literally everyone in Ahuntsic crammed in there during the excruciatingly hot summers. (Parc Gabriel Lallement on the corner of Sauve and Lille). (Also, Claude-Robillard). (Okay, pretty much anywhere with a pool).
4. Wasting all your money at Rockland Shopping Centre.
Partially because there was nowhere else to shop, but also because Rockland was - and still is - pretty awesome. Where else could you go for your fix of "Super Kid" flavoured ice cream at Laura Secord? Also, RIP to the Chapters that used to be there. You are missed.
5. ... Or Place Vertu.
And if you were lucky, you'd be able to do both in one day. S/O to the giant fountain at Place Vertu for holding all of my fortune in small coins, even to this day.
6. Spending winters catapulting down Pompei Hill.
For those of us who lived close enough to go, Parc des Hirondelles was awesome. In the summer, they had those water sprinklers you could run under like a crazy person. But during the winter? Oh man. That hill would become your prime spot for tobogganing. Or just rolling down like the dangerous rebel that you were. No judgements.
7. Having nothing better to do than loaf at the park.
Thankfully, Ahuntsic is full of gorgeous parks. Being so close to the water makes for some beautiful scenery, and when you're younger, loafing in the park with your friends is a choice activity. Still, though.
8. Having to travel to do anything.
Nowadays, Ahuntsic is a hub of restaurants, bars, and awesome places to chill. But back in the day? It was a little hard to find places to go. Which meant that if you wanted to do anything, there was a huge chance you had to factor some travel time in there. Not too much, though, since Ahuntsic is pretty close to basically every other borough in Montreal.
9. Seeing condos go up pretty much everywhere.
Which isn't necessarily a bad thing, but, you know, it was kind of shitty to see your favourite place get torn down and replaced by a tower of condos. Unless the condos replaced a vast, empty field of nothingness. In which case, bring on the gentrification.
10. Going shopping on Chabanel Street.
And/or the clothing district near Meilleur. Back in the day, there was no other place for savvy shoppers to get the best deal on unique clothing items. And even though today not that many people scour Chabanel in hopes of an awesome deal, we maybe still should. Sample sale, anyone?