I Know What You Did This Summer: Asian Persuasion

Unlike Ring Nation, I don’t have a movie to show for my summer (unless you count the one I took in Quebec of the free Cirque show…more on that later) but I did have an actual vacation.

For the most part, I was in CT enjoying all the things CT has to offer…picturesque wineries that produce mediocre wine and rocky Long Island Sound beaches filled with delightful rednecks (not to mention litterbugs). Also, I complained a lot about the rain.

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Picturesque streets

The “big” vacation of the summer was four days up in Quebec City where they speak French but, unlike Paris, don’t hate you for bothering them with your existence (and I’m fairly certain they shower and shave regularly). One note–if you’re hoping to stay in a charming little B&B in the Old City (aka Vieux Quebec), make your reservations well ahead of time. Despite my nagging, The Boyfriend waited until rather late to try to secure a room. There were, however, good deals in the larger hotels like the Chateau Laurier, right outside of the Old City.

Vieux Quebex is…well…old. A visit there is like stepping back in time with quaint frontages and cobblestone streets. It’s the only walled city in North America–in case you were wondering. Horsedrawn carriages (which I maintain are a form of animal cruelty) give tourists overpriced tours of the old city. Restaurants line the streets, along with  all kinds of shops full of things you’d never look at unless you were on vacation. There’s also a funicular you can ride between the lower and upper city with kickass views…

Lucky for us, there were tons of things “going on” like the 400th anniversary of French Canada…which meant there was a giant street celebration with people dressed up in historic clothing (although some just wound up looking goth) play acting in the streets and selling various wares.

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Seriously, highway overpasses above us

Cirque de Soleil was also doing a free performance every Thursday, Friday and Saturday night over the summer…under a highway overpass. It was my first Cirque experience and seeing thousands of folks crammed under a highway (usually the realm of bums and police informants) for a full production was pretty surreal in and of itself–nevermind the show! There was a full thrust stage, lighting and sound equipment fixed the bottom of the overpass and even VIP seating. And it was FREE.

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The falls

We also hit up Montmerency Falls–a giant waterfall where you have to climb about 400 stairs,  pay $20 for take a cable car, or drive to get to the top where there is a footbridge. Pretty amazing. We also went to St. Anne-de-Beaupre to see the famous church where lots of people are healed–as evidenced by the hundreds of crutches hanging up. Apparently it’s the number one religious pilgrimage site in North America.

The most memorable evening of the trip was, however, going to a night club on the street our hotel was on…it had the biggest mirror ball I’ve ever seen and when you plan special events for a living, you see a lot of mirror balls. But it wasn’t that giant sparkly orb–it was the two fistfights inside of six minutes that happened that made the night truly memorable! Seriously, 18-year-old kids (boys and girls), beating the snot out of each other is pretty entertaining. They took the kids out in nice full nelsons, but as soon as they hit the streets, it was out of the bouncers’ territory. You know it’s a good fight when it stops traffic.

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The famous Chateau Frontenac

Overall, it was a good trip and worth the seven hour drive. And, overall a it’s been a decent summer…although right now I’m about to go all 18-year-old-boy on someone’s ass over this damn heat and humidity. Don’t worry, I’ll be whining about the cold in a few months.

P.S. Go to Le Lapin Saute in the lower city and try the rabbit pie if you’re up in Quebec. Delicious.

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