partly cloudy, muggy, temps 26
Had a fabulous time at Stratford. A little nerve-wracking before - but often is. Nerves. Wracking. The theatre was sold out - which always feels great. it was decided I'd go first - and Giles Blunt would go second. I'm happy with that - get it out of the way, then I can just sit and enjoy. I relaxed about halfway through the first reading. Basically, Giles and I were each given 20 minutes to read - then there' be 20 minutes for questions from the audience. And then a signing.
I decided to do a theme - of setting. The fact I deliberately chose to set my books in Canada, and mostly in Quebec. And that I wanted a very keen sense of place, so there could be no doubt. I chose three short readings. The very beginning of STILL LIFE, Gamache's arrival on the Queen Charlotte Islands from THE BRUTAL TELLING and finally a reading from BURY YOUR DEAD, describing the bitter cold, and standing in front of the Chateau Frontenac, with the massive statue of Champlain surveying old Quebec City.
It was fun.
Giles was wonderful, as always, and the audience very receptive and relaxed. Good questions too.
And then the signing, and getting to meet a lot of strangers, but - what joy - getting to meet a few of you. How terrific that was! I know many of you drove a long way to be there, and I'm very, very grateful for your effort! It was a joy to shake your hand, give and receive a hug.
Then Michael, his cousin Marjorie and his sons Vic and Mike and I all went out to the Belfry Restaurant in Stratford for lunch. It's in an old church - marvelous. Had the best dessert ever...Ontario Cherry Soup. Yum.
And now, next morning, Michael and I are at the Toronto airport, ready to head to Vancouver, where Lonnie and Susan, volunteers at the Sunshine Coast literary festival, will pick us up, drive us to the ferry and take us across to the coast. And drive us to our B and B in Sechelt. A long day - but it would have been far longer without Lonnie and Susan! We're taking them out for dinner as a small 'thank you'.
Then - to bed.
So looking forward to seeing this part of the country. If any of you saw the old Canadian TV series, The Beachcombers, it was filmed on the Sunshine Coast. Stunning - gorgeous coast and mountains.
Mostly I'm looking forward to relaxing, walking, enjoying the sea air, and finishing Michael's brilliant manuscript. Might actually finish on the plane.
Will try to blog from there...be well - and hope you enjoy your visit to British Columbia's Sunshine Coast!