CALL 2013 Montreal – Amongst friends
Posted on 5th May 2013 in Events
At the annual gathering of the Canadian Association of Law Librarians (CALL) 5-8 May 2013, sponsored in part by ICLR.
Conference Diary by Rebecca Herle, Head of Marketing and Operations.
After an eventful entrance to the city I refer to as Belle Ville, Montreal, a few bags searched and a less than legal taxi journey, the ICLR team arrived safely at the Sheraton downtown. We decamped for a quick beer only to be swamped by a mass of Red: the Montreal Canadiens played Ottawa Senators at the famous Bell Centre, which is conveniently located opposite our hotel.
An interesting dialogue between three rather tired English people grappling to remember their GSCE French and an equally tired French waitress at the end of her shift meant it took some time to get the “Trois bières grandes” but it was well worth the wait.
Finally collapsing in to bed when we realised that UK time our body clock was hitting 5am!
The sun shone brightly as we set up the ICLR stand, with no major hiccups to report, thankfully.
The afternoon was spent taking a leisurely stroll down Sainte Catherine and through to the bustling Montreal old town. Very much the Parisienne Café scene with tables spilling out onto the streets, interestingly the Boisson Du Jour was a mixture of Beer pitchers (nothing odd there) and Sangria? Pour quoi? Who knows, perhaps because in Belle Ville anything goes. An exciting mixture of art, flair and happy air seems to waft the streets of this little French Canadian Citadel.
Sunday the show must begin…
The crowd gathers, law librarians from British Columbia to Newfoundland, as distance is no barrier for this immensely cheerful crowd.
And we’re off. In contrast to other events I always feel so at home and not on show at this event. In only our second year at CALL we have already found friends and colleagues who brightly came back to visit us and sit down for a mere catchup. With genuine interest in your wellbeing, your business and general news.
A successful first day done we all head to the Museum of Contemporary Art for the opening reception.
Always a centrepoint for this three day strong event. Busy, chatty, bubbly… I lost count of the many conversations all equally interesting and ICLR Online is met with continuing enthusiasm.
Ending on a very civilised cheese and wine hour I sit back, marvel at the CALL experience. As people we met last year pop by to say hello, the people that we’ve met this year pop by and recommend a restaurant or a local attraction and ask with interest how were enjoying Montreal.
Maybe us Brits are just too stiff upper lipped, I feel myself physically relax whilst I’m here. We all do. Lunch at Reubens, a Jewish Canadian diner style establishment famous for its smoked meat “salt beef on rye – Reuben’s special”.
I always think picture-taking of one’s food is a little crass but the phenomenon of the food out here breaks my usual rule.
And now let me introduce one of our friends (and one of our very first customers), John Eaton from the University of Manitoba, Winnipeg, author of recently published “Finding English Law” (and one of our favourite customers), whose interesting life to date includes: studying law, but deciding against a practising career, hockey player cum linguistics specialist cum law librarian… He quotes the following very apt strapline to accompany my historic luncheon:
They say ‘Nothing succeeds like success’ in fact ‘Nothing exceeds like excess’!”
En résumé – ICLR in Montreal CALL 2013, firmly amongst friends.