When I was six, my family packed all their things in bags or in boxes, and took off to Canada. For one whole year we lived in Montreal, where I made new friends, learnt a bit of French, took ballet lessons, and played in a park that reminded me of a sandpit.
We used to get those orange ice-blocks that snapped into two. Our apartment was on the ground floor, in a large complex of buildings surrounding a small woodland park. Back then the trees seemed so large, and they would scrape the autumn leaves into piles, which were perfect for jumping in.
My mother bought us a plastic slide, and stuck it over the balcony, to reach the ground. On that same balcony, a squirrel would always come visit us - it liked to eat crackers. My sister was born around this time.
When I turned nineteen, I went back to Montreal. I visited places that seemed both familiar and strange. I visited that apartment complex again, and everything seemed so much smaller this time - the balcony, and the woodland park. My time in Montreal as a child had become almost mythical in my mind - more of an imagining. Funny to think that it was simply a younger me that stood looking at the same place thirteen years earlier. I felt as if it was a different me instead.