A quick trip to the city

Laurent turned 13 last week and we combined the celebration of that milestone with our bi-annual city trip.

boy

Saint jean street Quebec

When you live in the sticks as we do (the sticks with good coffee shops, good neighbours, and the mountains) you need to make regular pilgrimages to larger centres to access goods and services that are just not available “in the woods” - comic book stores, “the mall”, and the Apple Store.

boy in store

With our hike now mere weeks away we used Laurent’s birthday as a good reason to drive the 7+ hours (one way) to Quebec City. We crammed the trip full of fun and necessaries. The aquarium, a stay at the hostel in the heart of the 400 year old city, and the crown jewel - an English comic book store - were the fun highlights.

Clownfish

Polar bears in aquarium

ice fish sculpture

A trip to MEC for the last gear purchases and a visit to Place Sainte Foy/Laurier mall complex for an iPad and clothes (not totally successful, we still need trail underwear for the boy, and running shorts for Celine and I) were the shopping parts of the trip.

Door comic book store

Shopping is not Laurent’s idea of a good time, neither is it mine. But sometimes it just has to be done. And if you have a new book along, well that does help.

Reading comic in car

If you go

The hostel downtown Quebec is a great place to stay. They treat families well there. Our kids love the social aspect of a hostel, probably because their parents do. In the course of our overnight stay, which involved cooking our own supper and buying the breakfast they served in the common kitchen area, we met two other families.

Quebec hostel

The hostel is easy walking distance from all the old city must-dos and must-sees. Unfortunately, we didn’t have a lot of time for that.

If you do go I recommend hitting a large grocery store on the way into the city (the IGA’s are nice) and arriving at the hostel with the food you’ll need for your stay. I didn’t have the foresight to do that. There is a grocery store nearby but it’s small, as are all downtown stores.

blue snowflake

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  • Matthew

    Matthew on March 8, 2014, 4:36 p.m.

    This sounds like heaven:

    "When you live in the sticks as we do (the sticks with good coffee shops, good neighbours, and the mountains)".

     

    Love Laurent's self-portrait! Laurent, you're doing a great job, keep up the good work!

    reply

    • renee

      renee on March 8, 2014, 4:42 p.m.

      Matthew, we love it here but getting out and away is a hassle and expensive. The nearest large airport, that we would fly out of is 7 hours away by car or 12 hours by bus. And we miss the ease of shopping sometimes but everything else about our home more than makes up for those inconveniences. 

      reply

  • Sharon

    Sharon on March 8, 2014, 6:04 p.m.

    Laurent has captured a good likeness in his self portrait, makes me want to dig out my drawing pencils. Sounds like you all had a fabulous time and a great trip to mark the beginning of his teenage years. I cannot imagine travelling for 7 hours to get to a city, our little country is so small in comparison!! (uk).

    reply

  • Stephanie Stevens

    Stephanie Stevens on March 9, 2014, 2:13 a.m.

    That looks like such a fun trip.  I have lived in very rural areas and also in towns and cities.  I really enjoy the convenience of city life, but I'm still a country girl at heart.  I think the city is just that much more special when you don't get to go quite as often.

    Happy belated birthday to Laurent!  Your self-portrait is great!

    reply

  • Divina

    Divina on March 9, 2014, 6:33 p.m.

    Your photos really capture the beauty of your day in the city (as do all your photos).  Is that a church in the background of the last picture?  I would love to go to the Shrine of St. Anne de Beaupre someday.

    Please extend my birthday wishes to Laurent!  :o)

    reply

  • Jess

    Jess on March 10, 2014, 11:16 p.m.

    We have a comic book store within walking distance- we stop there often! Which comics are they into? 

    reply

    • renee

      renee on March 15, 2014, 2:22 p.m.

      Tin Tin, Asterix, Marvel - Avengers, X-Men, etc (Celine looks for her age rating), Princess Candy - Brienne, MouseGuard, Calvin & Hobbes, Far Side, Airbenders (Laurent), and many more to name. Laurent devours graphic novels. The younger two can read anything from the children's section and Celine manages her own reading, choosing from the YA section and gives us a heads up on what's appropriate, or not, for Laurent (there are way too many graphic novels with scantily-clad women!)

      reply

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