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Times when I have thought that Quebec should be their own country:

-Kissing a boy at a bus stop in Montreal and an old woman in a fur coat comes up to me us and taps my shoulder. She is wearing a fur coat and a matching hat. She has a wonderful smile. She says: "J'envie des jeunes filles comme vous."

-Seeing these old professors near Universite de Montreal, in berets, on the back of the 52 bus having lively conversation in French and imagining how difficult it must be to have so few people across the country with whom you can engage in a lively, intellectual conversation in your own language.

-Having a huge crush on a Francophone guy and finally getting to talk to him at a party, then realising that one of us would have to take serious language lessons in order to communicate beyond the bedroom.

-Hanging out with separatists and realising that I had never thought seriously about national identity or the separatist issue. How, even though I have always thought that nationalism is the breeding ground for xenophobia and other awful things, I was jealous, because there is so little passion and in my idea of Canada.

-Watching the Quebecois athletes win gold at the Olympics and watch their baffled, kind of embarassed pride on the podium as they have no idea what the words are to the national anthem (or no desire to sing them).

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