On the Road to Métis II: From Trois-Pistoles to Sainte-Flavie
Next stop is prompted by a
glimpse of the extravagant spires of the Notre-Dame-des-Neiges church in Trois-Pistoles, where you think you
might catch a glimpse of the redoubtable nationalist novelist and publisher
Victor-Lévy Beaulieu but of course you don’t.
What you do hear, as you’re wandering around the church grounds, is English, a few words of spoken English, and this is so entirely unexpected that you turn around to see who would be speaking English in Trois-Pistoles. Two young men on bicycles – are they students here? but where? – and then they go on their way, leaving you with a puzzle until you learn that the University of Western Ontario has run a French summer school in the village for the past 90 years.
The best restaurant in Rimouski, Bistro l’Ardoise (152, rue St-Germain est, Rimouski) is booked solid. You can make it to the Musée regional de Rimouski before closing time, so you check out the photo exhibit Après Strand. Bertrand Carrière http://museerimouski.qc.ca/expositions/apres-strand-bertrand-carriere/, which includes not only books containing some of Paul Strand’s original Depression-era photographs of the Gaspé but 2010 Carrière photos (others being exhibited in Estevan Lodge at the Reford Gardens).
The tide and the moon are both full. By morning, when you awaken, longing for a walk along the water, the rocks along the shore are exposed, the gulls crying. By the time you’ve made it to the far end of the promenade, breathing the salt air and admiring the herons, the staff are putting cushions on the wicker chairs outside the Brûlerie d’ici (91, rue Saint-Germain ouest), where they serve a good cappuccino.