2019 seemed to pass with the blink of an eye. In late October I was with a very good friend speaking at the UAAC Conference in Quebec City. Six weeks later I returned to that gorgeous historic city. Could I live there when I retire? Yes, at least part of the year! And I will be retiring on 31 August 2020.
JA Moisan is the oldest grocery store in North America. It was founded in 1871. They have a bakery, a deli, a place for packaged meals to take home, a wall of speciality salts, olive oils, vinegar, Kusmi teas, coffees, candies – you name it! There is cheese, fresh fruit, and the best croissants in the city. There is seating for about ten persons. Stop and rest your feet – have a latte and a croissant or the daily special. Take home some chocolate. The interior is the same as it was in the 1920s and 30s. Soak it in.
Want to be pampered? After the beginning of November, the Chateau Frontenac has specials. The hotel is located in the Old City right at the top by the funicular. Beginning at the end of November to the third week in December, the German market with all of its little wooden stalls stretches from the Frontenac down through this historic part of the City. The best fish and chips are at either of the pubs on the main drag as you enter the Old City on St. Jean. One serves Murphy’s while the other serves Guinness – Murphy’s for the Irish, Guinness for the British with a hallway between them linking the two together. As you wander down the street there is a lovely bookshop with stationary and a good English section as well as a fine cashmere store. One of the problems for me was that there were just too many ‘tourist shops’ with any and all things made in China as a souvenir for Quebec City. You see them everywhere! Sometimes it is difficult to find nice local shops in the middle of all that.
Every year the Frontenac has a Christmas tree competition. They were magical!
And there is always a gingerbread house made like the hotel:
COVID-19 will have, by the time I update this posting, halted the plans of many. I look forward to a return to Quebec City. It has a vibe that is missing where I live. A truly remarkable “European City” in Quebec, Canada.
Published by maryannsteggles
I am a writer and occasional maker working with clay. I received my PhD from the University of Leicester in art history as a Commonwealth Scholar from Canada to the UK. Since then I have taught art history and ceramics until August 2020 when I returned to full-time writing. The giant umbrella under which I work is contemporary ceramics with an emphasis on wood firing, women who wood fire, the contributions of Vietnam Resisters on Canadian ceramics, and ceramics and sustainability.
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