This is day 8 of our Canadian adventure and we just left Quebec City. That was the last major city we will see in Canada. While Quebec was much more enjoyable than Montreal it was still a hectic time. But we did find the major stopping point we were looking for and that was Place Royale. It was part of the very old Quebec that has been completely restored back to its 1600s roots. That is except for the 21st century add-ons. Here is a picture of the main square in that area.
Of course this area is adjacent to the St. Lawrence river as it was the major highway in its time. There were lots of nice restaurants and shops in the area so I had trouble keeping Yvonne out of some of them. But, it ends up I was the one to spend for a major item which was a unique jacket. We found a parking space relatively close to the area and after plugging in about $10 worth of coins we got an hours and a half on the meter.
I made sure that I got a few pictures of the young french ladies in the area. I watched the one in the picture here put up her hair on top her head and as a result found that they follow the french in more ways than I thought. When she raised her arms to set her hair she revealed a full crop of hair under her arms. I knew Europeans don’t shave their armpits but I was surprised to see the french Canadians don’t either.
We made it back to our parking space just as the meter was going into “Void” so no ticket this time. Instead of trying to self navigate to the second spot we wanted to see in the city which was the La Citadelle we decided to let OnStar navigate us. On the map it was only about a mile or so away but after about a half hour of listening to OnStar say “turn left at…”, turn right at….” ”Off Route….” “Redirecting…” we gave it up and decided to just head north.
The next few weeks are bound to be less hectic than the previous one as we will not likely see another city exceeding 1,ooo people during all that time. We plan on taking the local highway that runs right next to the St. Lawrence and the Atlantic for about 400 miles or so. When we find a really nice place with the scenic views that Yvonne relishes we will like stay for a few days to recharge our batteries.
Depending on Internet access you might not hear from me for a few days but I will continue blogging off-line and load them up when a connection is available. And the journey goes on….
When I made the post this morning I commented that since it was Sunday morning our trip through Montreal would be a leisurely one. I was sooooo WRONG!! We did get to the two sites on our agenda but it took almost four hours of driving to get there. At first I decided to try to navigate using just the atlas. I found Mont Royal on the map and after a few misdirected turns and about 45 minutes of bumper to bumper traffic we were at that location. The trouble was that it was not “Parc du” Mont Royal. So after admitting I couldn’t get us there (it takes a lot of gumption for us guys to admit to something like that) we turned the task over to our OnStar friends. They said with a laugh we only missed our destination by about eight miles (they don’t do kilometers at OnStar).
We were then directed through several streets and told to turn left which would have been the wrong way on a one-way street several time. After re-routing and taking about a half hour to go the 8 miles we were there. The view of the city was everything we thought it would be. There is a picture of it here. It was about a half mile walk from the parking lot to the site in a sunny 90 degree day. Yeah I guess it gets up to 90 degrees in Canada too.
After the Parc du Mont Royal we decided to try to see the Olympic complex here. That was the one for the 1976 olympics I think. My manhood was too fragile to take another serious hit so we let OnStar take us there. As usual there were several misdirected turns and about an hour of driving but we did get there. We turned into the visitor parking area and were told the parking would be $13. That seemed pretty high but since we had suffered all the near collisions with the crazy french drivers we paid the price. As usual there were no elevators there for us senior citizens so it was up a few steep stairs and finally to the big pylon that hung over the complex. It was pretty neat but it does show its 40 years of age. We planned to go up to the top but for that they charged another $20 apiece so we skipped that. We did get into the sports area without paying any extra. It was smaller than it looked on the outside.
Anyway after four hours of fighting bumper-to-bumper traffic we decided we had seen enough of Montreal and headed north. We are now in Trois -Rivieres just south of Quebec. If we can get some of our unsettled nerves calmed down we will try a short hop in to Quebec tomorrow and then it is on to the St. Lawrence seaway up to Nova Scotia. I don’t anticipate that there will be much of a traffic problem up there but since I was so wrong about Montreal who knows.
And the journey goes on…..