As you probably already know I have been in Quebec for the past 8 days. The trip was a lot of fun and I really enjoyed the programs the teachers chose. So, I shall now give you a day by day summary of what happened.
Day 1 – Plane & Bowling
We didn’t do much on the first day in Montréal since we landed fairly late. One highlight of that day was the fact that my ears still hadn’t popped by the time we were at the restaurant for supper (Supper was a buffet). When dinner was over we walked a few blocks to a recreational building where we went bowling. After coming in second place, even though I got mostly gutter balls, we got on the bus and drove to our first hotel. It wasn’t much to look at. The colours and design kind of reminded me of a mental institution or a hospital. The shower had really low water pressure too. My roommates for the trip were were Adrian, Catalina, and Lauren. Aside from that, and the fact that my ears still hadn’t popped by the time I fell asleep, it was a fun evening.
Day 2 – Info & Views
First thing the next morning we had a complimentary breakfast at around 8 in the morning.
Afterwards we met with our tour guides in front of the Notre Dame Basilica in Old Montreal. From the outside, the cathedral doesn’t look like much. But on the inside it is very pretty. The organ has 1,063 pipes and the statures are very detailed. It was well planned because the floor declines so the people in the back can see. Our tour guide showed us the Bank of Montreal, the oldest structure, and the different parliment buildings. It was raining the whole day we were there but it wasn’t to bad. For lunch we went to a food court where there was a beautiful statue of Poseidon’s wife, Amphitrite. After lunch we went to the Stewart Museum. The museum used to be a “prison” in the 19th century when the British suspected that everyone with a foreign name, family, or connection could be a spy. Because Canada was colonized by the British Empire some of the prisoners were sent here (Some were sent to other colonized countries such as Australia but North America had more land). The next place we went to was a Fur Trading post-turned museum. Where we learned about the battles between the companies and where the Europeans traded and how Quebec City was affected when the routes changed. We also got to feel the different furs. For supper, I can’t remember what we had but I think it was a buffet. After the supper I can’t remember we went to the Mount Royal Lookout on top of the only “mountain” in Montreal. Took picture, went for a nice, muddy walk, then got back on the bus and headed back to the hotel.
Day 3 – Art & Relaxation
On the third day we woke up had breakfast at the hotel then we were off to the Fine Arts Museum for a workshop and tour. After the tour guide showed us a few specific pieces of art we got to work on the art project. We were given black pieces of paper and paint Sharpies and we were told to draw a self portrait. Not one of our physical faces but of what defined who we were. What we liked, what we feared, what we simply disliked and whatever you could think of. The teacher held onto ours and I still haven’t gotten it back so no picture of that yet. Once our time was up we were given free time to look at anything on any floor. That was tons of fun and there were lots of pretty paintings and sculptures I liked. Next we had lunch and I got a bubble tea; It was delicious. Funny story, I was eating with a few friends (including Shamus) and when they got up to leave I was grabbing my bag when I noticed a backpack and wallet sitting on the chair next to me. Turns out Shamus forgot his bag and his wallet fell out of his pocket. So I grabbed his stuff and returned it to him after struggling with carrying everything. Lunch we went to the Olympic Tower and took an elevator to the top. Great view but not much to do up there so I talked with a few people. Back at the bottom, we went next door to the Planetarium. That’s the relaxing part. We watched two shows: An artistic one that zoomed through space and one that talked about how the Northern Lights worked. The music for the artistic one was very nice and exciting, matching the visuals. For supper we went to a buffet and afterwards we went to the Ministry of Cricket where we played an hour of Quidditch and an hour of Nerf Wars. Wasn’t a favourite part of the trip but it was still entertaining. Why? Because we didn’t have broom sticks, we had pool noodles. Now picture a bunch of kids running around with pool noodles between their legs. Back at the hotel we went to bed and we slept.
Day 4 – Wax & Rails
Today we checked out of our hotel and the first thing we did after breakfast was head straight for the Grevin Wax Museum. Lots and lots of statues. After we explored there and shook hands with dead people we got on a train heading for Quebec City. It was 2-3 hour train ride and by the time we reached Quebec City it was supper time. For supper we went to a Spaghetti House and afterwards we went to a training class at the Martello Tower. We learned how to load a musket and that if you were left handed you couldn’t be in the war. We also learned about the punishments people would receive for their misbehaviour/crime. You’d either sit on a wooden horse at an angle that made your butt/back ache to the point where you could sit or lie down without pain. Either that or you were whipped. Our new hotel was much nicer, and out of all the hotels we stayed at this was my favourite.
Day 5 -Falls & Sugar
After breakfast at the Spaghetti House we went on a walking tour of Old Quebec. That lasted until lunch where we had a full 2 hours to explore shops and grab something to eat. I got something for my mom, dad, and Ian during that break. Next was the Citadel Tour. It was very cold that day and I’m sure it would have been much more enjoyable it had been sunny. We learned a bit about the history of when Canada belonged to the French and when it belonged to the English. Our next stop was at Montmorency Falls. As I said before, it was quite chilly out and going to a misty location didn’t do much to help. Still very pretty to see and I took plenty of pictures. Once we got back to the bus we head of to the Sugar Shack for supper. It’s basically a place where you have a lumberjack meal. Something that fills you: Eggs, potatoes, soup, bread, and meat. There was only one rule though: Put syrup on everything. Hence the name, Sugar Shack. The food was delicious and I particularly enjoyed the crepes. After our 4-5 course meal we went outside and got to eat maple syrup chilled on snow. That was really good, and I highly recommend it. Once everyone was done we headed over to our last activity of the day: The Ghost Tour. It wasn’t exactly scary, but it was hilarious. You had to be there to understand but it was less of a murders-to-haunt-you-for-the-rest-of-your-life tour and more of a guy-comes-back-to-life-and-tells-you-about-his-job story. The guy leading the tour played the executioner from the 18th century and we run into a few other characters who were put to death by him. We hear about their crime from their perspective and for the most part they don’t like him. It was sort of along the lines of a comedy or mockumentary.
Day 6 – Lost Planes & Cannons
This morning we woke up about an hour earlier than usual and went to a buffet for breakfast. Next we went to a presentation about the battle on the Plains of Abraham presented to us by two men dressed up as Wolfe and Montcalm (For those of you who don’t know who these people are: Wolfe was the leader of the English army and Montcalm was the leader of the French army.). That was tons of fun to watch and they told us how amputations were done back then. Then, after a quick visit to the Plains of Abraham we had lunch then got on the bus back to Montreal. A bus ride that should have taken 2 hours ended up taking 3-4, resulting in us getting to the airport late and missing our flight. We got tickets for planes that went through Toronto, but thanks to the terrible storms they were having our flights were cancelled. And so, using the insurance we checked into a new hotel and spent the night there.
Day 7 – Bugs & Leaves
Seeing as how we had no plans we got to “Sleep in” until 8:30. Well, most of us did. I was up at around seven reading before the rest of my room woke up. When they finally did we grabbed some breakfast down the hall and went back to our rooms until the teachers called a meeting in the lobby. Apparently the next flights to Calgary would be in 2 days. So, that day we went to a botanical garden, a bug zoo, grabbed lunch, had supper, then later watched Infinity War (in english). That’s pretty much all we did that day.
Day 8 – Science & Duckies
On the last day half of us took off in the morning to get to the airport for their flight. In order to fit everyone on a plane home we were split into 2 groups: The ones who would take the 12-ish flight and the ones who would take the 6-ish flight. I was apart of the latter. While my group was in Montreal for the afternoon we went to a science centre. It was informational and there were games to play but the highlight of the day was after lunch. Lunch was something we picked at a small food court near the centre. After lunch we went and sat in the sun while we waited for the bus to pick us up. Next to where we were sitting was a little manmade pond where there were duckies swimming. So I took pictures of the mom, the dad, and the five ducklings. So cute. Then we got on the bus, arrived at the airport, had supper, and got on the plane. 4 hours later we landed in Calgary; Where I shared my jelly beans I got at the airport with my family making them guess the flavour.