Tuesday, July 03, 2007

Cottaging and Canada Day... ing...

Headed on up the line on Saturday morning to spend some relaxing time at the cottage. My grandparents have had a cottage up in Notre Dame de la Salette for many years now, and we frequently make weekend trips up there, all year long. This trip happened to be right smack dab in the middle of strawberry season, so Yoshiko and I went out for the afternoon with my grandmother, aunt and cousin for some picking. Unfortunately, the strawberries weren't cooperating in the section we were in and it took us longer than usual to fill up our baskets, which was fine as the weather was perfect for spending time outside.

We ended up picking 5 or 6 baskets and the ladies spent the rest of the day making delicious strawberry and rhubarb pies with the rhubarb picked fresh from the garden. One of the weekend's highlights for me was introducing my little Yoshiko to canoeing. She'd been kayaking before, on her trip to Vancouver some years back, but had never hopped in a canoe. Our little lake is perfect for paddling around on, the water is usually pretty calm and when it isn't it's not too hard to find some shelter from the wind. Here is Yoshiko trying her hand at paddling.

We ended up having a very nice ride, spotting some turtles and a baby beaver on this trip and the resident blue heron on our little run around the lake on Sunday. I've always loved the serenity of paddling on a quiet lake, so soothing.

Leaving from the cottage on Sunday after dinner after a day of very strange weather, we spotted one of the many rainbows which dotted the skies for this Canada Day 2007.

After taking just a few moments to unpack our things, we headed to the downtown area to take in the tail end of the Canada Day festivities, specifically to see the fireworks display, which is always great. We ended up parking on the Quebec side of the river and finding a spot behind the Museum of Civilizations from where we had a rear view of the Parliament buildings and the fireworks.

We really lucked out with our spot, allowing us plenty of room to set out all our chairs and affording us a great view of the fireworks, which are launched from the rear of the National Art Gallery (glass building on the left) and aimed right over the river in front of us.

As usual, the fireworks display did not disappoint, making the sky as bright as day at some points in the show. I even managed to get a few shots of the fireworks with Parliament lit up in the background.

A great first Canada Day for Yoshiko, next year we may brave the crowds and make our way to the hill for the party... we shall see.

This is going to be a very short week for me, as I have Friday off and we are heading 728 kilometers down to Sarnia to see my dear friends John and Sarah and my god-daughters Kadance and Simone, the latter of which was born while I was in Japan and I have yet to meet! Looking forward to the road trip, it should give Yoshiko a bit of a better idea of the scope of this here country of ours... with this 700 kilometer trip, she will have traveled the span from Quebec city, some 400 kilometers east of here, down to the western tip of Southern Ontario, a total of 1100 kilometers, and yet just a small sliver of Canada. Of course for now, I have 2 more days of work to go through... then a heck of a long drive ahead of me... but still... it'll be great to see everyone down there!



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