About a week ago, Mr Punch and I celebrated 3 years of being together as man and wife (see how formal I like to make things sound? Lol!). Being such a #TravelerCouple as we are, for our anniversary we decided on a road trip. We planned to explore the Eastern part of where we currently reside, Toronto, Canada, with the farthest location being Prince Edward island. We left our home on June 24th at about 11 am and had our first stop in Montreal after about 5 hours on the road.
Apologies in advance, this is a photo heavy post! Of 520 photos in total, I did my best to limit to just these...clap for me!
Montreal, Quebec: June 24th to June 26th
I was super excited to get to Montreal for a few reasons but mostly to experience how whack my French was. All the french I practiced was put to the test in Montreal and I failed woefully! First of all, most of the streets were in French, "Rue this, Rue that". So even understanding my GPS direction was a beautiful pain in the butt!
Another reason for the Montreal excitement was the fact that since the exact anniversary was the day we arrived Montreal. So even though we got there tired and just wanting to rest, I had to make sure we had dinner to celebrate the anniversary. We got there at about 5 om and had dinner at 7 pm at Le Cinq restaurant. Le Cinq restaurant experience was a good one for sure, good food, good setting (we sat outside for a bit), great bathrooms and I was able to say "Where's the bathroom?" in french successfully, YAY!
The next day we spent it touring downtown Montreal, seeing the architecture, restaurants, shops, etc. I was amazed by a particular intersection where all the restaurants had patios, like a whole intersection filled with people eating outside! Totally the picture of Paris I had in my head!
|At Le Cinq Restaurant|
|Having Lunch at a Chinese restaurant, Downtown Montreal.|
|Because Patio-eating in the summer just got a whole lot cooler!|
St.John, New Brunswick: June 26th - June 29th
Two days after we got to Montreal, we began our 9 hour trip to St.John, New Brunswick. The trip was a smooth one mostly because Mr. Punch and I kept switching as drivers and also because I was flying on the highway! There was a whole road for a while that I did not see any speed limit, so I flew! Mr. Punch said there was though, but I truly did not see. :)
We stayed with a family friend in New Brunswick for 2 days and what I remembered clearly from that stop was how many deer you can just randomly see on the road. You know how when you go to Naija villages and see chickens just going about their daily business on the road? Exactly how it seemed in Quispamsis, which was the actual city we stayed.
Second day in Quispamsis, we went Kayaking at the Rockwood Park. This was a fun experience eventually but it did not begin so. I'd let you in on a secret, Mr.Punch and Water don't go too well! So initially in his totally freaked state of mind, it was a pain to be in the canoe with him. Thank goodness he finally got over it once he trusted me not to drown him :)
Prince Edward Island: June 29th - July 1st
The 3rd day after church in Quispamsis, New Brunswick, we begun our 3 hour journey to our furthest destination; Prince Edward Island. And there, the real fun happened...we loved every part of that trip, starting from the hotel/resort we stayed to the activities we did.
We stayed at the Stanley Bridge Country Resorts which was my first happy moment when I saw the room we got. Huge room, king size bed, massive bathroom and a great view. From that moment, I knew I was going to hate leaving the Island in 3 days.
The first day we toured the Cavendish area which is pretty much where all PEI visitors should visit. Full of shops, restaurants, parks, beaches and more, you get to really experience the PEI vibe in the realest form at Cavendish.
A few of the things we actually did at PEI; Played mini-golf, went on some kids ride that I was too scared to even open my eyes (yes, I should be totally ashamed of myself), ate lobster rolls (some tiny meal of hot-dog bread and seasoned lobster for $15!!! Apparently you can't come to PEI and not eat lobster), went Go-karting (which I am never doing again in my life!) and had some yummy Indian food when we stopped by Charlottetown - the capital of PEI.
Quebec City, Quebec: July 1st - July 3rd
3 days later, we said goodbye to PEI and headed to Quebec City! I thought I had experienced a glimpse of Paris when I went to Montreal, little did I know I was about to experience the real Paris of Canada in Quebec city.
Starting from the Hotel we stayed - Best Western Hotel, I sort of knew I was going to enjoy Quebec city. This time around I did not let my french (or lack of), get in my way, I simply got used to saying the phrase "en anglais s'il vous plait?", which means "In English please?" With that, everything ran smoothly as I enjoyed the City.
The location we stayed seemed to be built just for visitors because only a few miles walk we got to the main Quebec city tourist area. While in the stores, shops and restaurants mostly French was spoken, as we walked on the streets we heard quite a lot of English, clearly many of us in that area were visitors.
In Quebec city we did a lot of sight seeing, I shopped a bit and we enjoyed some french food, like the ones you see in the movies; tiny food but a crazy "L'addition" at the end of your meal! They will just mix 2 pretty food items, tell you it has wine sauce and call expensive money at the end *sigh*
In general, I think Quebec City was way better than I expected for someone as a Tourist. But if I had to choose where I'd rather move to among all these places, I'd be happy to live in Montreal - the perfect place to increase my french-speaking game, without getting totally sold due to the balanced presence of English speakers.
Gananoque, 1000 Islands, Ontario: July 3rd to July 5th
Our last leg was to Gananoque/1000 Islands which we spent 2 days in. This was a stop I was not too thrilled about; I think I assumed I had all the fun there was to have in our other locations and I was sort of tired and just needed to rest. But Mr. Punch was totally psyched about this last location, and finally his excitement rubbed off on me.
The major things we did in Gananoque were the 1000 Island viewing from the tower, the 1000 Islands Boat cruise and the evening play by the river. All of these were on the 4th of July and were quite amazing to say the least. The boat Cruise took about 1.5 hours both ways and 2 hours in one of the Islands seeing the Boldt Castle. Now that's a CASTLE! Knowing the history behind the castle and actually seeing everything (the rooms, furniture, etc), makes every bit of the castle come alive.
|At the top of the 1000 Islands Tower|
|The tiniest US Border Control I've ever seen! The Boldt Castle is apparently on the US side of the 1000 Islands.|
|How's that for a vintage room? One of the bedrooms in the Boldt Castle|
|Tiniest International Brigde ever. One side US, the other side Canada.|
Next day at 9 am we got back on the road to catch the 11 am service at our home church here in Toronto.
*sigh* I miss being on the road, road life with my best friend is always too epic!
The Real MVP
We are so thankful to our transgender car (Beatrix; she was a he - Cyrus - when she was with me in the States, somehow she became a "she" when we moved her to Toronto, don't ask me how) for hanging with us for a total of roughly 33 hours on the road. Though she gave us a scare on our return trip, she still pulled through.
But the real MVP goes to God of course, who made it totally possible to spend so much time on the road without sleeping on the steering wheels or getting car sick. He definitely granted us journey mercies and has continually made being a #TravelerCouple a safe one!