I’m still amazed that I’m doing this. After a year of being shut in, I’m slowly getting the feel back. Quebec City really helped as people were out celebrating, laughing, talking and enjoying seeing 3 pugs walking the street.
We got a 5 am start for the dog walk. The hotel was near Victoria Island. I wanted to walk down there and get a photo of the sunrise on the Ottawa River. Heading down to the river we came upon this other park that had accessible ramps.
Victoria Island is a sacred place to the Indigenous people. A photo of the island – not mine.
However, when we got there it was closed. I did manage to get a couple of shots with the river in the background.
In the 19th century a mill was built and an iron works factory. It has the designation of a Federal Heritage building. The National Capital Commission put a fence around it and is fixing it up.
The fixing up also includes getting rid of the contaminated soil. It was used by Thomas Wilson to make calcium carbide. It was a nice walk, though. Back at the hotel, breakfast started at 6 am. There was a family in front of me. They packed up my breakfast to take back to the room (along with an extra sausage for you know whos).
Later, when I was checking out, there was a breakfast lineup of about 30 people. It pays to get up early. As we headed for Quebec, we had a number of traffic congestion spots which added to our time delay.
I was looking for a spot to stop for a break and saw a sign for the Papineau Manor historic site. Papineau was a reformist politician and led a rebellion against the English in 1837. This was a tie in to my life. The leader of the English Canada side was William Lyon Mackenzie. He started the rebellion from Montgomery’s Tavern in Toronto. The site of Montgomery’s is in my hood and walk by with the pugs regularly.
However, I didn’t bring the stroller and it was too far to walk to the manor. Plus we were running late. So we sat on a bench, had a snack, avoided the poison ivy and headed back to the highway.
I booked a room at the Delta Marriot. It was close to the Plains of Abraham – which is where I wanted to take the pugs. At the end of the trip we will come back and explore Old Quebec. In the meantime, a big, month long music festival has started – Festival d’ete de Quebec (FEQ)
We passed by a street of restaurants that looked enticing and made plans to come back for dinner.
The Plains of Abraham have always fascinated me. As a boy I learned the history of how the English soldiers climbed the hills during the night to form up on the plains. When I was studying Teaching English as a Second Language at Centennial College, one of my lesson plans was on the Battle of the Plains of Abraham.
The have a Plains of Abraham museum in one of the fortified buildings. The English won the battle that day. It signaled the fall of New France. However the French language, culture and religion were enshrined in the British North America Act with Canada becoming a bilingual country.
Even though it was a long drive, this park was the only thing I had planned to do. Everything worked out. The park is huge so I decided we would visit the Joan of Arc garden.
It was built in 1938 with over 150 different species of plants and flowers. During the month of October, they decorate in Halloween style. The inscription on the Joan of Arc statue reads “A tribute to the patriotism and courage of the heroes of 1759-1760”
It is rectangular in shape but an easy stroll for the pugs – lots of sniffing happening.
I decided to have a picnic at a table next to the garden. Yesterday, Deb Folkes had packed us a take away from the lunch we had. Melon, egg salad sandwiches, pasta salad and butter tarts. The pugs particularly enjoyed the egg salad and want to go back to Perth for more “Aunty Deb’s” egg salad.
We headed back to the hotel where the pugs had dinner and then we all had a nap. Took them out for a quick pee break and then headed back to the festival.
I was looking for something small – didn’t need a big dinner. The Taverne Grande Allée had a sign out with 16 beers on tap. It was a sports bar with “Dust In the Wind” playing in the background. Perfect. Got a table out front so I could watch the people. Ordered chicken poutine and a local Quebec beer – Death Valley double IPA. My known poutine friends have commented on the fact the it came with green peas.
It felt so good to see people walking by. Quebec is open now to indoor dining but I wanted to observe the happiness of people outside, enjoying life after a year of being shut in. Balloons in the trees – I am in Quebec.
There wasn’t any musical acts scheduled until next week. However there is a visual component to the festival sponsored by Bell. They had setup a fun place in a park for both adults and children. I can see it being a popular gathering spot as the setup was for meeting at a social distance.
The building in the back of the last picture is the Quebec Provincial Government building. These chairs and picnic tables were setup on the Parliament Gardens park.
Pugs greeted me like I’d been away for a week. Greta sniffed my poutine breath. We had a king size bed but this time she was used to it. Tucked everyone in for the night. Tomorrow is camping day. Wonder how Greta will react to the tent after 2 nights on a king size bed.