Canada and Vermont Vacation, July 2005

Northbound NH/VT | Montebello, QC | Montreal | Southbound VT

Scenic Drive to Montebello

Montebello is a charming little town in the middle of nowhere. There is really nothing there but a river and some woods and lakes. The town itself has many bars, cafes, antique stores, and at least one master wood-worker, judging from this wonderfully chunky picnic table.

Conference dinner and aborted boat ride (Fairmont Chateau Montebello)

In the pouring rain, we walked down a grassy hill to a boat that never quite made it into a river cruise. We ate pate, smoked meat, rillettes, maple fondue with native strawberries, and giant shrimp. After recommending the fondue to everyone I saw, with Robert's help, I finally worked up my courage to ask a chef for the recipe. I could have drunk the stuff, I swear, and the strawberries were so ripe and small and sweet they were perfect in it.

Monday, July 18: Trout Hatchery Tour (White Fish Lake, in Kenauk Wilderness Park, Montebello)

Along with everyone who had a small child, we opted out of the ATV tour or the white-water rafting and toured the fish hatchery instead, to learn about fish and envy the hatchery cat (she is very fat). Ah, the nice trout. If they get the slightest bit hungry, they'll eat each other until they're quite large.

Black-Tie Dinner (Fairmont Chateau Montebello)

Robert poses with Howard and Bob after the dinner. Howard makes Robert and I pose: "Look romantic!" he ordered. We tried to oblidge.

Tuesday, July 19: French-Canadian Breakfast (Fairmont Chateau Montebello)

Breakfast was also a star meal: there was thick, rich oatmeal that I topped with strawberries and honey “butter” (whipped honey), and there was creton (Quebecoise pork spread formed into a small cake) and pumpernickel bread. Why bother with lunch, or with non-Quebec foods?

“Camp” Dinner and Evening Activities (White Fish Lake)

On the shores of the lake, after dinner, everyone dove into the kayaks and canoes before it got dark. Some folks "dove" a bit too literally, as their canoes soon overturned, making expensive dress shoes, pants, and people, very wet. I passed on the boats, holding out for skewered toasted marshmallows in the pitch dark over fire pits. The maple fondue made another appearance as well. Happy was I.

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Created: 7/25/05. Last Modified: 8/7/05.