In August, 2003, my mom and I went on vacation to Canada. Our first stop was Montréal. We’d had trouble getting reservations because there was an international auto race in the city that weekend. And, underscoring the festivities, we stumbled into a street festival highlighting customized classic cars.
The next day, we went to the Montréal botanical garden. We were intending to go also to the exposition grounds across the street, but the sight of the famous building there gave us vertigo, and we thought it would be best to stay away. You can see why:
However, the botanical gardens were great! We walked Mom’s feet off…
Also, we stumbled upon a harp concert in the Japanese part of the gardens. I’ve never seen anything quite like this before!
Montreal was a fun city! Even the normal architecture had a spirit of playfulness about it…
…and when the city was being playful, well, a person just couldn’t help smiling!
All too soon, it was time to leave. Off we went to Mont-Tremblant Village, a terribly cute, terribly fake pedestrian village at the base of the ski slope. Despite the cold, windy weather, it was fun to explore.
The real village of Mont Tremblant – the one that was there before the developers came along – is the delightful town of St. Jovite, where we found two amazing grass vehicles in front of the grocery store.
Now, Ottawa was a surprise. It wasn’t in the plan. But frankly, we got bored in the little towns of the Laurentians, and rather than staying around another day, we decided to go for it. The Canadian Automobile Association got us a room right downtown in the elegant Marriott (complete with cherry furniture in the bedroom and heated marble floor in the bathroom). Here we splurged after dinner on dessert in the revolving rooftop restaurant, along with a flight (three different labels and vintages) of port.
And we loved the city! It had rained the day we arrived, and then turned warmer, so the visual effects were wonderful…
I ran on the bike path shown above, which extends for miles along the river. I also went to a great outdoor market (and we all know how much I love photographing the textures and colors of markets)!
Another great surprise: Burlington, Vermont. We had what might have been the best meal of the trip at Paulette’s just south of town – food, atmosphere, friendly service, and reasonable prices were all tops. And the city itself was completely charming! Here are some pictures of the waterfront on Lake Champlain:
Soooooooooo……….. Now, what shall we do for an encore on the third annual Mother-and-daughter vacation?