Québec Séjour

The wife and I just spent a long weekend in Québec kid-free. Some much needed time away for both of us. Time to relax and get reaquainted.

Vieux-Québec

Friday was a day of hockey. Although I’m really just a beginner (one season and three tournaments under my belt), I play with the office team in an annual tournament. Luckily we play in the recreational division, so the pressure is not as high. Our first game was at 7:30am which was difficult after getting into the hotel at midnight. We only had two lines so that meant being out on the ice for almost half the time. I wasn’t very good in the first game, but I did get a member of the opposing team into the penalty box. He checked me and since I’m still a bit shaky on my skates, I fell down. He was pissed. But his team, which is from Boston, did a lot of checking and complaining. It was a bit embarrassing to see all of the teams from the US play with that attitude. We won the first game and surprisingly won the second game against a team we thought we would lose to.

So that meant we advanced to the finals and a third game in 9 hours. Drawing on my distance running experience, I downed Gatorade and candy bars to try to replenish the muscles. I have to say that hockey is quite a grueling sport. You are constantly moving and I find my adrenaline levels soaring even an hour or two after a game. And it is not only the games that get you tired, the dressing and undressing with all that hockey equipment is a chore in itself. We lost in the finals, but I was still quite happy with the game. I touched the puck and even handled it fairly well a few times. Plus I had a shot that just missed the goal. I still had energy towards the end of the game. But I did trip over my own skates out in the open ice, without anyone around and without the puck. Plus I ran full on into a fellow teammate in the closing minutes. More of a source of ribbing later on than any damage done.

The day ended at almost midnight after a long banquet where they have hundreds of door prizes offered by all the companies attending. Next year is in New York City with the finals in Madison Square Garden, so I’ll try to be in better shape.

On Saturday, we wandered around the city. During all of our previous visits, we almost always visited the tourist areas. This time we walked out of our first hotel and visited the area to the north of Parliment Hill both above and below the cliff. We always enjoy wandering around places and discovering all the interesting locales that are not advertised. It appears that this area has been gentrified in the past few years. So there is a mix of refurbished older buildings and newer contemporary ones.

Quebec City Streetscape

Then we traveled around the cliff to our second hotel near the Musée de la Civilsation. This area also seems to have been cleaned up over the past decade because I remember this area being more run-down during our previous visits. Both areas were quite nice because they offer an alternative to the beaten path of the tourists. Much less crowded with some nice shops and restaurants. And it still has the character of the more well-known areas of the city. We splurged a bit and stayed at a very nice place and had a great supper. A nice finish to a nice day and weekend. Much easier to return to the daily grind after a respite like that.

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~ by Frank on April 24, 2007.

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