‘Is that a human cannonball?’, a statement that would intrigue anyone, let alone a group of travel bloggers. No words needed, we flock with mutual grins and wide eyes. But the crowd is expanding like my stomach while devouring the sky-scraping cheesecake at dinner earlier. This is no ordinary show.
An evening stroll with new friends last weekend, turned into a surprising spectacle of flying acrobatics and electrifying stunts. It’s come to be expected now, every time we take a spontaneous walk in our temporary home city, to come across a show, parade, market, festival, street party, or fireworks. This is a typical summer in Montreal.
‘Cinq, quatre, trois, deux, un…’, a deafening crack, fireworks pouring and then out pops a man in an astronaut suit. He’ll need a bit more force to get to the moon, but he lands safely in a net to a round of applause.
People start to slowly disperse after this grand finale. But then, just as we think it’s all over, a procession of drummers start. Suddenly, a smoky parade of nightmarish characters come through the crowd behind us. Fireworks crackle in the sky and we’re even confronted by a four-storey balloon of Celine Dion.
What looked like the end, never was, one act after another started up to the left, to the right, from behind and even up above. We were mesmerised for hours in this festival mish-mash of comedy, circus, opera and theatrics.