clear, cold, windy, minus a gazillion
Hard to believe just a week ago I was in a cotton sundress in Phoenix, Arizona. On one side of me a honey-mooning couple were doing 'something' in the hotel pool and on the other side of me the inauguration of Barack Obama on television. I chose to watch the television.
It was 85 degrees and I was there to launch my latest book, A RULE AGAINST MURDER.
Now, here I am in Quebec City - minus 25 - and clutching a hotwater bottle like a babe. Indeed, there seems something biblical about this. Definitely Old Testament.
However, in the midst of the bitter cold, we found Paradise. Well, steak frites. And, in case any doubt remained, profiteroles. We had dinner last night half a block up the street (Saint-Stanislas) at the Entrecote St Jean - on rue Saint-Jean. Outside the mullioned and frosty windows people hurried by and Christmas lights gleamed on the snow, and inside we were toasty and warm eating steak and french fries and ice cream filled pastry drizzled with warm, dark chocolate.
The only thing that might have marred the picture was us...our clothes were fine, but our heads lacked a certain je ne sais quoi. It's the bane of a Quebec winter. Hat Head. And static electricity. As soon as we get indoors and take off our tuques (hats) our hair stands straight up, as though we've had a fright or a particularly good idea.
But then comes the fall. At some point during dinner some of the static electricity leaves (I wonder where it goes) and the hair falls. But not all of it. The hair that does subside then clings to whatever skin is exposed. Neck, cheek, ears. Half the hair plastered to the face, the other half reaching for the stars.
A Quebec winter is a test of true love. I had the great pleasure of sitting across from Michael and his grey Mohawk. And he got to see me - little Richard Simmons.
Then, when we touch each other we run the risk of electrocution. If we could just harnass this energy we could run the whole city.
Had a wonderful day yesterday...read 100 pages of proofs for the next book and set up an appointment with someone who knows all the history of this place where the body will be found. That will be on Thursday. I still need to find someone who can tell me about Samuel de Champlain. The founder and father of Quebec, 400 years ago. Whose body has never been found. They've somehow lost the founder. And it remains the biggest mystery in Quebec history.
I'm here to solve it. And eat croissants. Wish me luck.