Monday, August 17, 2015

Summer in the North, Part 1

We traveled north this summer, visiting the Finger Lakes, Ottawa, Montreal and Quebec City. The weather was simply wonderful: sunny days with moderate temperatures and low humidity. Even the bugs seemed inclined to relax, rather than annoy us. 

We tasted wine, of course (see earlier post). Wineries are prolific in the region. Our first overnight was at the beautiful, relaxing Driftwood Inn on the shore of Lake Cayuga. Our hosts and the other guests (a friendly group from Buffalo) made the stay enjoyable. And the region is very lovely this summer. Field and forest were green and lush. It appeared they were having a bumper season for hay.

Pier at Cayuga Lake

Hay Wagons, Ovid NY

We drove to Ottawa to stay with friends we met while traveling in Vietnam. They have an amazing home in the middle of the city, from which they showed us Ottawa's highlights. We walked almost everywhere--I can see the attraction of city living, especially when the weather is so fine. And Ottawa is a great city, compact, clean and studded with interesting sights. Parliament, naturally, but also the Rideau Canal, opened in 1832 to connect the Ottawa River to Lake Ontario. The first several locks are stacked together downtown. The canal is still in use, mostly for recreational boats. To the right of the canal in the photo is the grand early 20th century Chateau Laurier hotel. The National Gallery of Canada is housed in a beautiful glass and granite building; we enjoyed exhibits of works by Alex Coville and Mary Pratt. Opposite the Gallery, and framed here by the legs of its enormous arachnid sculpture, is the Notre Dame Cathedral Basilica.

Parliament Centre Block, Ottawa
Rideau Canal Locks, Ottawa
Ceiling, National Gallery of Canada
Notre Dame Cathedral Basilica, Ottawa
This post is getting rather long, so I'll end it here and write another about Montreal and Quebec City.

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