THE ADVOCATE 357
VOL. 79 PART 3 MAY 2021
I organized dinners at three restaurants later that evening. A group of
lawyers and spouses joined Pierre and Nicole at one of the restaurants. Al
Hudson told me the next day he said to Pierre, “So you had to cheat to beat
Matthew.” Pierre was aghast. He had missed the last gate. At the first opportunity
the next morning, he sought out Matthew to apologize.
The ski party was a great success. The mountains were at their best. We
skied in ad hoc groups, formed new friendships and reinforced old ones.
Not only did I start a friendship with a man that I had admired from afar,
and with Nicole Gerrard, but also I got to befriend Jean Potvin, Pierre’s tax
lawyer and close friend.
I had only one photo of Pierre and me. The large version was on display
at the Delta Mountain Inn for years. Pierre in his “National Firm” T-shirt, me
in my Vancouver Aquarium T-shirt and the hotel manager in a suit. Unfortunately,
someone eventually put a scratch through Pierre’s face. The picture
was taken down and was given to me. “The National Firm”, the reason
for the party, did not last long, but the personal relationships continued.
Not long after the Whistler party, I was in Montreal with my partner Mike
Akerly. Mike and I had lunch with Pierre and Yvon Bolduc at a bistro. During
the course of the conversation, I asked Pierre where he lived. Mike
snapped at me, “Bill, how do you not know?” Pierre answered for me, “What
Mike means, Bill, is that I live in the house that the original owner, Ernest
Cormier, designed for himself. He was a famous Quebec architect who also
designed the University of Montreal. Mike expects you to know because it
was written up in Architectural Digest.” (How would I know?) Pierre then
asked me, “Why do you ask?” I explained I may go for a jog later today, and
I could run by and have a look. Pierre said, “If you do, you should drop in
and I will introduce you to the boys.”
I was staying at the Ritz Carlton. Pierre’s house was up the hill on Pine
Avenue. I set out in light rain. When I came to the house, I rang the doorbell.
No answer. I was disappointed at my missed opportunity. I had started
down the next side street when I spotted Pierre talking to someone as they
stood on top of a small apartment building being renovated. I caught his
attention, and he told me to climb the ladder and join them. He had been
checking, from the site of the new construction, down into his backyard to
see if his privacy was going to be compromised.
When we got off the roof, he led me into the garage at the back of his
property. The first level was where his classic car collection was stored.
Above that, he had installed a good-sized swimming pool. We went up the