After 5 very nice and relaxing days at Pia's and Alfons' we left Almonte Thursday and drove into Québec where we want to spend the next weeks while driving across towards Newfoundland and Labrador. So far our experience is fantastic. The people here are so friendly and helpful. The landscape is beautiful, too and we've seen pretty little villages, farms and settlements, neatly trimmed grass and well maintained flower beds and houses. After only three short days Sue is picking up her French again and we have been talking to locals and other campers, finding out where to go and what to do. So we visited a fromagerie, a farmers market and a wildlife park close to our first stop at "Camping au petit lac Simon". All of it was interesting and well worth while to see. The park for example stretches over a huge area where they keep all kinds of animals native to North America. Deer, elk, moose, bison, mountain goats, wild boar, coyotes, wolves and bears and of course all kinds of small animals and birds call the park home. They roam free except for the bears and wolves which, for safety reasons, have their own several acres big sections. What they do basically is introduce the animals to the park and then let them choose their own place to live within the landscape which includes everything from plains to rugged hill, fields to wooded areas.
We also visited the local historical museum which was very interesting. They display artifacts from the early settlers to the late 1900s, some of which we have actually seen used in our grandparents respective businesses.
The next leg of our tour brought us to the Saint Lawrence River just east of Montréal where we arrived yesterday. We have already checked out some small stores and road-side vendors and will go pick up some wood-oven baked bread around noon. These small stores remind us of our native Switzerland where one can find a butchery, a bakery and a dairy and cheese store in most any village. They are often preferred over the big supermarkets by the locals because of the variety they offer and the personal service. Seems that here in Québec it is very similar.
André and Sue