Quebec City…I love you!

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.


  1. Vanessa Perinot says:

    Mary Ann – Hospitalfield seems truly amazing! What an inspirational location for artists. I only wish I could see it for myself. I think I’ll have to add this to my bucket list. So beautiful!

    1. Hospitalfield is an amazing place to do a residency! And, for some reason, I just got this e-mail Vanessa. How crazy is that? June 14 2020?

  2. keith barber says:

    What a nice surprise to see something from home when he is so far away from it! the images of Nigerian women artists making their pots with every part of the pot set in place by hand and formed by their hands- clings to the form of the pots in my mind.

    1. You are right. I think he was absolutely shocked, as you say, in a good way, Keith.

    2. Hi Keith. Somehow your email just came through today – 14 June 2020. Must be a button or something. Thanks for checking in.

  3. Gunda says:

    Hi M just tried to email you – reply to your email and it got bounced back. Did your email change tonight?

    1. Hi Gunda. No work e-mail anymore. I will check the one WordPress is sending out. Thank you.

  4. Zyna Boyes says:

    Hi Mary Ann…I just came across your site by shear chance BUT since my first married name was Steggles, and since it is so unusual , I need to ask if you are in any way related to the Steggles family from Bow in London U.K.?
    My late ex husband, George Steggles, who was born in Bow, emigrated to Canada in 1967 and
    taught in the Fac. of Ed (art prof)
    at both U of Mb and U.Vic.
    He moved out to Oz where he died in 3 years ago.
    Today would have been his 96th
    birthday! How strange that I should come across you today…
    Nothing is ever a coincidence….
    Zyna B in Winnipeg

    1. Dear Zyna, Yes, I am married to Don Steggles. I know you know him because he talks about you. And, ironically, I have a son named Cristofre and when I was teaching the big first-year art history course at the U of M, the students thought that your Chris was ‘my’ Cris. I understood he was a famous skateboarder. I met George a couple of times when he came to visit Vi and Bob (both now deceased). And my friend, Pat Bovey, has a painting George did of her daughter. It is a small world! Don told me to tell you that he has a print of a painting done by an artist named Steggles of Bow. I have no idea what brought you to my site but we all say hello.

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