It's no secret that Montreal parking is confusing. I'm a born and raised bilingual Montrealer who has been driving daily for the last 13 years and even I get tickets once in awhile.
Getting a parking ticket is one things, but I never thought I'd ever get my ass kicked because of a parking sign.
And yet, that's almost what happened to me.
I was driving home at around 10:00 pm when I got hungry, so I decided to stop for a hotdog. Luckily there were 2 parking spots right there in front the restaurant.
As I pulled up to the spot (marked in red below), the car that was ahead of me (Let's call him Steve) put his blinker on to show he wanted to park there as well. I figured it didn't matter, because like I said, there were 2 spots and there were 2 of us.
These were the spots (sorry for the crap quality):
Steve was pretty much where the car in the picture is.
I figured that I would take the red spot and Steve would take the pink spot, so I started parking.
As soon as I was parked, Steve put his hazard lights on and started honking. I wasn't sure this was directed at me because, who the hell honks backwards? Apparently Steve does.
He rolled down his window and started yelling: "That's my spot!"
I was confused, why would he want the red spot when both spots are legal and free? If anything, the pink spot is better because it's easier to pull out and no one can box you in.
He parked his car in the pink spot and walked towards me looking really angry, so I asked him: "What's wrong?"
He tells me once again to get out of his spot.
I pointed to the parking signs to show him we're both fine parked exactly where we are. He pointed to his car and said: "I can't park here!"
That's when I understood his confusion. Take a look at the picture below:
In the right circle there is a cluster-fuck of 3 parking signs! And then in the left circle there's a 4th sign where street parking ends.
That means that every spot behind the red one follows the same set of rules, but the pink one is in it's own magical zone with a whole different set of rules.
But at night, in the dark, it really did look like you couldn't legally park there.
So understandably the guy was convinced I stole the last legal spot and he was willing to kick my ass over it.
Now, I'm barely 5'6 so I'm not looking to fight anyone. So I tell him: "I swear, you can park there. Look at the sign, you're good."
He once again yells: "No you can't!"
So I asked: "You want this spot and I'll take yours?" Never thinking for a second he'd be stupid enough to take me up on my offer.
But he did, and like 2 idiots we actually switched parking spots.
After it was done and I turned off my engine, it hit me. I almost got my ass kicked because Montreal parking signs are too confusing.
Ain't that a bitch?