Photo cred - Steve Brandon
Stop me if you heard this already. You're in a social situation, could be a party, could be just a casual meeting with some friends of friends. People start chatting. Someone turns to you.
"So, where do you live?"
"The West Island."
Here it comes, either a) they're a fellow Westie, or b) they don't care, or c) they raise an eyebrow, feel a brief flash of pity for this poor West Islander living so far away from everything cool, and then immediately go back to not caring. Hey, I lived in West Island for a long time. There's plenty of plus sides to living there - the biking trails, the quiet, the affordable housing - too bad sometimes we act as a punchline for the rest of the island. But if you live in Dorval, Pointe-Claire, Kirkland, Dollard-des-Ormeaux, Beaconsfield, Baie-D'Urfé, Sainte-Anne-de-Bellevue, or Pierrefonds, you know that the struggle is real.
Knowing nothing about French people
People who stay in West Island think French people are weird, mythical creatures of legend: they're heard of but never seen (like unicorns. To West Islanders, Francophones are unicorns).
Ending every afternoon out with friends with "Sorry guys, I have to catch my train."
You have the 6:30 P.M and 9:15 P.M Lucien-L'Allier train departure times seared into your brain, to the point where your train senses start tingling without you even checking the time.
Photo cred - Philippe Fist
Unless they have a car, it's hard trying to invite people over from the rest of the island
You actually cannot get a downtown-er to stay at your house overnight unless you promise a ride back.
Photo cred - Dwayne
At parties, trying to follow conversations about recreational hockey, ringette, swimming, etc. that you couldn't care less about.
Does anyone outside the West Island even know what ringette is?
Photo cred - Google
Bragging about your local restaurant scene is a bit difficult
The choice when eating out in the West Island is...not amazing, compared to some other neighbourhoods. Unlike some of your Mile End or downtown friends, you don't have many choices for a cool, local spot to call your own.
Photo cred - Steve Brandon
Figuring out which bus terminal is more depressing: Dorval, Côte-Vertu, or Fairview
Non-white people: Looking around sometimes and thinking "Woah, I'm the only brown/black/Asian person here."
And when you finally find someone else, you nod at each other like "AYYYYY ....I see you".
Trying to explain that Ligne Vaudreuil-Hudson and Dorion-Rigaud are actually the same thing
Taking the night buses.
If you've ever taken a night bus, you know what I'm talking about here.
Navigating the congested traffic on Autoroute 20
In most cases, it's better to take the train during rush hour. Too bad rush hour starts at 2:3o P.M and lasts till 6 P.M.Photo cred - Steve Brandon
Never escaping high school, because everyone ends up at John Abbott
Unlike people who leave for other schools, it's impossible to let the people you dislike to fade gracefully out of your life. When are they going to accept that you two are still Facebook friends, but you're going to mutually pretend not to see each other in social situations?