A True Salon

By Teresa C. Jones on December 27, 2010

In 1992, when I arrived in Montreal to replace the number two at the U.S. Consulate General in Montreal, I had a few days of overlap with John Riley, my predecessor.  He told me all about this fascinating salon that he attended and that I should attend.  He even took me to a Wednesday night meeting.  Coming from Washington and the interagency maze of experts, it was refreshing to find a group who actually thought as well as they talked.  Diana and David had the magical ability to draw out the best of the discussion and the discussants.  The topic didn't matter.  The wit and the intelligence were wonderful, and I always left there wiser. It was also refreshing to find a salon where people did not parrot each other but were able to engage in civilized debate.  I made sure that my husband (who was then political minister counsellor in Ottawa) and my future Ottawa boss (the economic counsellor) had a chance to attend.   Both Fiona and Mark led some sessions also and showed that this was definitely a family talent.

Since my husband and I retired from the Foreign Service, we have enjoyed the salon even more during visits to Montreal as we now have a bit more time to really appreciate the marvelous chemistry or maybe alchemistry that David and Diana created for all of us. 


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