I had the incredible opportunity of visiting Quebec for the first time this summer, and it stole my heart away. I've seen many of the provinces and territories across Canada, but there's just something special about Quebec.
To me, Quebec is a province locked in time. Montreal is futuristic, with expansive bridges, modern art, postmodern architecture and has the title of being where John Lennon and Yoko Ono staged their "Bed In For Peace". Quebec City, on the other hand, is old fashioned, remarkably European with French styled architecture, has old cobblestone roads and a massive murals. The contrast between the two cities is so incredible that I actually considered splitting this article into two sections, one about Montreal and one about Quebec.
Quebec is unique to Canada as it's the only province where French is the native language. Canada is supposedly bilingual, but the only bilingual province is New Brunswick. Although Quebec is strictly French, I had no trouble getting around because everybody I met spoke fluent English.
Quebec has had it's challenges over the years, from struggling with the Aboriginals, to being bombed and destroyed by the British, by having a rebellion (or "Patriots' War", depending who you ask), by being plagued with extreme separatism and having to be invaded by the Canadian military, by having the Oka Crisis and finally by almost separating Canada with their famous 49-51% vote. Quebec is the province of Canada that is most proud of who they are and their heritage, and it is something uniquely refreshing about the province when you compare it to Western Canada which has a very recent history and whose heritage is lucky to go back more than a century, let alone almost four.
Being said, I would like to introduce you to "Instagramming Canada Quebec", and the 9th installment of my 13 part series about Canada. Hope you enjoy it!
Lakes and Rivers
And, as always, a big thank you to my sweetheart Jessica Nuttall for proof reading a countless number of my articles. I couldn't do any of this without you. I love you.
When I was younger, I really loved winter. I loved sledding, snowball fights and building snowmen. One of my favourite pastimes was visiting a little outdoor ice rink a few blocks from my house. Every winter my friends and I would climb over the walls of the rink and goof around on the ice. When we weren't falling over our feet, we'd play hockey with whatever snow chunks we could find. As these events became more frequent, we often talked about playing real hockey on the rink. Eventually, we would end up playing hockey, but we'd settle for the street in front of our houses instead.
Beyond childhood, the only other time I went skating was in high school. Everybody else's ice skating skills had improved with age, but mine were still that of a fourth grader. I remember standing in the rink, struggling to shoot while holding my balance, only to have a classmate swoop in and steal my puck! Ever since then, I've stuck to floor hockey.
As I got older, my love for winter dwindled. Now I find it cold, icy, dark and sometimes miserable. My blog usually slows down in the winter for this very reason. I've been trying to get out and enjoy our longest season of the year, but it's hard. Most days I just want to stay inside.
Last summer my family and I tried fishing up in Northern Saskatchewan. We had a great weekend, but we caught nothing. I wasn't too disappointed though, as I have never actually caught a fish. After 25 years of fishing and failing, I have officially given up on the sport.
That is until I was invited to visit Medicine Hat, Alberta and go sturgeon fishing on the South Saskatchewan River. I was hesitant, but I said yes. I really didn't want to spend eight hours out on the water just to come home empty-handed, but I figured to give it one more shot.
My guide for the day, Brent Thorimbert, picked me up at my hotel around 8:30 a.m. and drove us to a valley located just outside of Medicine Hat. We got out on the water about 9 a.m. and arrived at our fishing spot twenty minutes later. Brent explained that sturgeon fish are "bottom feeders" so they swim along the bottom of the riverbed and eat up bugs and small fish. Our fishing lines were weighted for this very reason. The bait should sit on the riverbed and would get sucked up by an unsuspecting sturgeon.
Among the tombstones of the Regina Cemetery are little blue and white flags. In 1993 the Regina Ethnic Pioneers Cemetery Walking Tour put together their first tour, which focused on the city's founding fathers. In 1999 they then put together the second tour, which focused on the diversity of immigrants that live within the city. The blue flags mark the path of the first tour and the white flags mark those of the second.
The walking tours are self-guided, and can be purchased at the Riverside Memorial Park Cemetery for $2. Together, they offer over eighty different locations to visit.
For this project I teamed up with Patti Haus from I Heart Regina. She's another local blogger that has just broken into the scene and blogs about food, drinks and things to see around the Queen City. You can follow her on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter. ย She provided many of the pictures for this article.