Saturday, January 9, 2016

Tuesday, October 20, 2015 – Quebec City – Mostly Sunny – Warmer – 40F

What a difference a day makes…

It is at least 10 degrees warmer today with lighter winds.

After breakfast (corn flakes today to shake things up), we headed back to Le Vieux Quebec to find La Maison de la Litterature, a fancy interactive library (so we are told).  We have a map and we are pretty familiar with the layout of the old city from yesterday’s tour.

Turning right out of the hotel, we walked down Le Grand Allee Est.  The first thing we ran into was a menorah, the usual symbol of Chabad.  There is a Chabad in Quebec City, although there are less than 200 Jews in all of Quebec City.  This Chabad really has a challenge here.


Chabad – Grand Allee

We decided to have lunch at a restaurant on the Grand Allee before walking down to Old Quebec.  Today, we had a hankerin’ for Middle Easter food, namely falafel.  The Grand Allee is packed with eateries but the Mediterranean restaurants (three of them) seem to be concentrated in one half block section of the street. 

We settled on Tony Beyrouth Cite Restaurant based on how many people were in the restaurant and the size of the place.  We shared a falafel with potatoes, hummus, and a diet coke – I tried not to look at how the food was being prepared (seems that you can only count on Subway to use gloves when handling uncooked food).  The price was reasonable and the food was OK even though the falafel balls did not taste like any I had had in the past. 


Falafel and Pita at Tony Beyrouth

We finished our lunch and made our way down Grand Allee once again reaching the Provincial Parliament Building.  This time, we had a chance to get a picture of the Suffragette Monument from the front (along with Ellen).


Ellen and Her Sisters

Just before entering the Porte St. Louis, we came across a statue of Ghandi.  While it seems out of place here, Ghandi and New France had a common enemy, the British.


Mahatma Ghandi

Beyond the Porte St Louis, there is a monument to Churchill and FDR, commemorating a meeting between the two leaders in 1943 in Quebec.


Winston Churchill and Franklin Delano Roosevelt Monument

We followed out map looking for St. Stanislaus Street (where La Maison was located) but couldn’t find it.  What we did find was a very interesting statue commemorating educators.



Monument Aux Freres Educateurs

It turns out that we had actually walked right past the Library – the signage was not that obvious.  Since we had found it, we would spend some time there.


“Write, Read, Live”

The building consisted of three floors with every surface being white.  There were couches – not so comfortable – and fantastic light fixtures (see below)


We stayed for about a half hour.  On our way, I noticed what appeared to be a bar on the ground floor.  That would increased Library usage in the US if each library had a bar.


Belly up to the Library Bar

The Hotel at City Hall had an elaborate Halloween Display on its front entrance.  Definitely worth a picture.


Ellen and the Pirate

Couldn’t resist taking another picture of the Chateau Frontenac – this time I lined up the Monument of the Missionaries.


Place D’Armes and Chateau Frontenac

From the terrace, we could see our ship, Caribbean Princess, which got in last night, giving the passengers an evening in Quebec.  They will disembark tomorrow and we will get on.


Caribbean Princess

IT was time to start our walk back to the Hotel.  We took the same route back but turned left at Battlefield Park to see more of the Plains of Abraham.


Battlefield Park – Plains of Abraham

Because it was warmer tonight, we decided to look for a restaurant on Rue Cartier.


Rue Cartier After Dark

It was so cold the another night when we walked down this street that I didn’t take a picture of the amazing street lamps.  These huge lamps, which are all different and would be at home in any fancy house, must be some kind of installation (except for the fact they are supported by heavy tubes of metal bolted into the sidewalk).


Street Lamps on Rue Cartier

We passed on several pizza restaurants and one burger place (don’t ask).  I suggest we go one more block to the main cross street.  When we got there, we noticed a fast food place called ThaiZone, all lit up with neon and flash.  We checked it out and it was like a Asian Chipotle – your food is made to order.  We ordered Vegetarian Pad Thai and Vegetarian Fried Rice.  Based on the dishes we saw being handed out, the food would just be enough.  However, when the dishes came out (and I watched them being cooked), they were huge!


Carrying our Orders to the Table


Check out Those Portions

I really liked my Pad Thai, which had lots of tofu and eggs (no peanuts, however); Ellen’s Fried Rice had lots of sautéed veggies, which is not the way we usually see this dish.  I helped her eat the veggies.  We only ate two thirds of our generous portions.  Who knew that great Thai food could be found in a fast food place.

Back in the Hotel, we spent an hour or so having tea in the dining room along with the fortune cookies from the restaurant, and the rest of the evening watching the Cubs lose in the NLCS and reading.  I am reading Daniel Silva’s “Prince of Fire” – an early entry in the Gabriel Allon Series.  So far, I love the book.

The desk told us that getting a cab tomorrow to the pier would be a simple matter.  Since checkout is at noon, we are in no rush, at all.

I think we have spent our pre-cruise time in Quebec City very well.

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