Sunday, 19 December 2010

Lovely day

sunny, not too cold, temps minus 7

As you can see, a gorgeous day! I took this photo while feeding the birds this morning. Then we drove to Knowlton for breakfast with our friend Cotton at the Cafe Floral. And now off for lunch in Abercorn with Joan and Edward. Michael and his sister Carol grew up with Joan, and used to teach sailing together. Joan is also in our exercise class. You have very few secrets from people you exercise with. They know all your crevices, and what's hiding in there.

Joan is also one of the funniest people we know. She describes being in a college production of King Lear or Hamlet or some tragedy but as soon as she set foot on stage people started laughing. She has no idea why, but she can make any story hilarious. All the funnier, perhaps, because she can look quite formidable while telling it. I feel I should take notes while listening to her.

After hearing about all the snow in Europe (Heathrow closed?!)-and the terrible squalls that stranded hundreds of motorists in Ontario, and the flooding in California - I've decided to put our emergency kits back in our cars. They were taken out when we switched vehicles. Now, mostly our emergency kits are first aid packs. But with the snow situation we thought maybe we need more than that. Some people were trapped in their cars for days.

So we now have a bag with candles, matches, tea, dried soup, a mug (last minute thought - d'oh). I should add a blanket, I realize. And perhaps an energy bar. Much more and it'll be more comfortable than home. We'll be aiming at snow banks.

Off to Montreal tomorrow for lunch with Bal and Linda and Bethany, then afternoon tea at Birks with Louise Loiselle and the Flammarion Quebec gang. then back here. And off Tuesday to stay overnight at the local monastery, St-Benoit-du-lac. Never stayed overnight before, but Brother Charles, one of the monks, has managed to sneak us in. I might need to shave my head, but I can at least not pluck my moustache. This is reseach for the next book. Michael and I become monks for a day.

Have to say, that is a huge part of the fun of writing the Gamache books, is all the research. Getting access to places most people never see. Or necessarily want to.

Be well - hope you're warm and safe and enjoying yourself.


Marjorie said...

Louise, please add a bunch of those chemical packet hand warmers to your emergency kits. (They are only a dollar each.) If you are stranded for a while, you can activate them and put them in your boots and mittens and keep your extremities warm. And a plastic bucket to collect snow to melt for water!

But, mainly, don't get stranded, please!

--Marjorie from CT

Susan said...

You're setting a good example, Louise. Those types of kits should be in every car for those who live in snow-clad areas (says Susan, who lives near Donner Summit). The picture is wonderful.

lil Gluckstern said...

You have a lovely day indeed. Here in California, we are wet, and out of power at times, hair frizzy-like that matters, and they are predicting rain through Christmas. Whatever it is, the weather is sure more extreme each year. I have get an emergency kit ready for my car. The monastery sounds interesting. I look forward to traveling through that on with you. Happy days.

A. Wright said...

Weather conditions here in So. Cal have been difficult for travel this weekend.I drove through a rain white-out on the freeway today -- a first for me. It was raining hard, the clouds were so low they were a fog to the ground and all that combined with the water thrown up by all the cars created a situation were there was just no visibility. My usual two hour drive stretched into almost three hours and I was exhausted when I arrived. Driving when you can't really see and you have to hope some idiot doesn't plow into you because he can't see, but is driving too fast, puts one on edge.

California freeways just can't handle this amount of water. It has rained for three days straight and they say it will rain at least four more. Start building the ark and gathering the animals, it doesn't look good for this part of the world, folks.


Dana said...

Marjorie, Don't ever worry about Quebec residents during the winter. They drive in the snow almost every day and snow tires are mandatory. As my daughter said, "Mom, if I don't drive on snow covered roads I would never get out." Much better than black ice, heavy fog, and snow where people are not experienced.

Sandra said...

Louise, I love your blog and books and just wanted to tell you that my book club will be reading A Rule Against Murder this month. I think you have so many wise things to say about people and families in that one (but truth be told I love them all.)
Stay safe in all that snow - here in Connecticut we have yet to get any this year.

Louise Penny Author said...

Hi all, love your comments - and thanks for your help with the emergency packs. Yes, loads of places finding travel difficult these days,

Home now, and very happy to be back by the fireplace. Hope you're safe and warm.