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Springtime Thoughts

I’ve decided on a walk towards a favourite park, La Freyère, it is called.  I know I’ve shared it before.  It always offers something more.  To give myself more distance to walk and take in the beautifully crisp day, I park about one kilometre away.  This gives me my first glimpse of the St. Lawrence and the huge houses mansions (some owned by celebrities) along the way on the river side and large fields across from them.

I decide to enter through the parking lot of the now torn-down La Saulaie restaurant.  It was THE place to dine, dressed in one’s finery, to nosh on the fanciest of meals with the best of wines.   It is now part of the park annexed to La Freyère.

I cross the double bridge (sorry, I cannot help but photograph it from all angles!), cut through the park and cross the boulevard, towards the Stephen-Langevin Arboretum.  Maybe I will be lucky and capture some birds.  However, not thirty feet in, I am surprised by the presence of a few deer.  I know many cross the river from the islands right across from the park, but I had never been so lucky before.

Content with what I have seen, I decide to walk along, where there are less people and I can feel one with my surroundings.

It is officially spring, according to the calendar, but here in the woods, you would not know it.  Snow covers the paths, a (mostly) firm walkway created by the regular visitors of this park, but if you step off said path, can easily sink past your ankles.  It’s deeper in the non-trampled parts.

The sun, like fool’s gold, shines brightly and blinds me, but offers no substance.  Not much, anyway.  Standing perfectly still, protected by the woods, face upturned, there is a soupçon of heat.  I am amazed how powerful that limited heat is and how much snow it can melt despite the freezing temperatures.

I walk on, enjoying the silence that is broken by the honking of returning geese.  They pass overhead in twos or larger groups, raising a ruckus, announcing their presence.  “We’re back! We’re back!”  So many people hate them because of the mess they leave on lawns, in parks, etc. but I just cannot.  They are beautiful, albeit often nasty, creatures.  I look forward to seeing them with their babies, all fuzzy and adorable.  But that is not yet.

For now, I am in the moment, eyes looking up, in hopes of finding an owl or falcon, though it seems not my destiny to find them without someone else pointing them out!  So matter.  I trudge on, admiring the play of light on the maple seeds and the criss-crossing of branches of trees I cannot name, notice the colours of the various grasses, mixed in with the red dogwood (I think?).

Past an open field, I approach more woods and what looks like a secret passage.  It’s magical – to be perceived as your imagination sees fit, of course.  Depending on the light, it could appear more sinister…

Exiting my hidden path, I walk along the sparkly creek, that brings me to the edge of the woods.

And this beautiful view

I chose to return along the outside path which winds its way through the trees, so that will have looped the whole arboretum. And let me tell you, it is a chilly one.  The field is to my right and I can feel the wind stinging my face as I walk back.  I try to pick up the pace but as you can see, the path is rather narrow.  Must be careful!

I crossed back over the boulevard and into the La Freyère park so I can take a short walk to the St. Lawrence.  It is beautiful in every season and with some snow and sun?  I’m sure to get a few more pics. (Hopefully you’re not bored yet!)

One last one of the bridges, but from the other side…

I’ve now kept you long enough and thank you for sticking till the end.  Hopefully, the next time I share this park, there will be no snow and things will be a-blooming!






111 thoughts on “Springtime Thoughts

  1. “The sun, like fool’s gold, shines brightly and blinds me, but offers no substance. ”

    That, my friend, is an American Sentence, but I think it’s really a Canadian Sentence. Beautiful photos and thoughts while communing with nature, Dale.

    Liked by 2 people

  2. I don’t often feel homesick for my motherland, but this did it! Even though I never lived anywhere so beautiful. Thanks for sharing your late winter, early spring walk!

    Liked by 2 people

  3. Q

    Your photo gallery tours have it all, from the witty narration that walks us along to the brilliant (yeah, I know I said people throw that word around too much but in your case it’s not nearly saying enough) captures that snap, crackle and pop with colors and stories and lines that make you go “mmmm”.

    Fool’s gold sun. I’m borrowing that beauty. 😉

    I love you “spring collection”.


    Liked by 1 person

  4. Thank you so much for taking us along on your walk, Dale! I loved walking along and seeing some of the sights of this beautiful area. The sun might still shine like fool’s gold, but it’s getting brighter and warmer.

    I should go out to other places more often for my walks.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Wow! Even “mansion” doesn’t quite describe that elegant home!

    Mr. & Mrs. Cardinal are a beautiful couple indeed. And the squirrel is just too darn cute.

    Walking in this park, despite the cold temperature, could never be done in a hurry because there’s just too much beauty to take in. Your photos are outstanding, and your narration made me feel I was right there with you freezing my butt off!

    I hope you get to embrace more ‘fool’s good sun’ soon. Thank you for taking me on this walk. Very enjoyable.

    Liked by 1 person

    • These homes are stunning. We have a whole other neighbourhood that is composed only of these huge homes.

      Aren’t they, though? I would have liked to capture them side by side but they were having none of it. And Mr. Squirrel got all dressed up in his blacks for the occasion.

      No, you are right. I walk it often and always see something new. I do thank you for the lovely compliment. Other than beside that field and by the water, the temperature was quite lovely. I love that my narration made you feel like you were right there!

      I shall definitely be embracing more. Thank you so much for joining me, Ginger!


  6. Nicely composed with words and photos, Dale.

    A striking examination of of your early Spring (officially) or late Winter (as I see it) on your piece of the planet.

    The descriptions of cold air mixed with the “soupçon” (had to look it up) of warming sunshine place me there in memories of days gone by as well as with you on your wonderful trek.

    Another expertly done write, my friend, in which your words paint the more adventurous modern human (with camera) juxtaposed with nature’s seasonally changing flora and fauna (with bridges, trails, waterways, and mansions stirred in).

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you, Bill 🙂

      Yes, early Spring or late Winter – they kind of are mixed in together.

      Woot! I got you to look up a word! I took a chance with that one (there are so many French words used in English, but I’m never sure because I’m too bilingual). It is wonderful to know that I was able to put you there.

      I am chuffed and blush with pleasure at your words, my friend. I guess it worked out, then, that it took me almost a week to write it all!


      Liked by 1 person

      • Excellent write, Dale.

        Can one be “too” bilingual? It seems to me that (like me) one can be too monolingual. 🙂

        I have friends (English/Spanish/Tex-Mex) who change back and forth while they are writing or talking.

        De nada.

        Liked by 1 person

        • Much obliged, Bill.

          In the sense that all the words in both languages are comfortable and I am often surprised to learn a French word is used in English. Plus, I never know how to spell words like correspondence/correspondance. They both look right because they are… just not in the same language!

          In my family, we speak Frenglish and any unilingual that tries to follow can get pretty dizzy. We change within the same sentences!

          Liked by 1 person

  7. Thank you for being such a wonderful and descriptive guide through a beautiful peaceful world. We must have been on the same wavelength, I walked to Sloan’s Lake yesterday and photographed the lake from both ends, including the Canadian Geese and a few ‘snorkeling’ Cormorants. It was a chilly day but the sun felt good in between the wind gusts. I was surprised the ice was fully melted on the lake and came home after the 7 mile jaunt with hope that spring will actually spring forth with some flowers and tree budding soon.


        • That’s true.
          That’s like when I went to the Boucherville Islands National Park and decided, oh, how far can that trail be? Effing far, tell you what!
          New routes are great 😁

          Liked by 1 person

  8. Dear Dale,

    I’m a little late for the tour, but I enjoyed it nonetheless. I loved, “Like fool’s gold…” Perfect description. Are you a writer or something. 😉 Lovely photos.

    Shalom and lotsa well-defined hugs,


    Liked by 1 person

    • Dear Rochelle,

      Not all that late 😉 Plus, I started it on March 22nd, put it aside and finally wrote it a week later! I am pretty proud of that one. I am definitely tryin to be a writer.
      Glad you like the photos and the blah-blah!

      Shalom and lotsa springtime love,


      Liked by 1 person

  9. Beautiful photos that suggest snow and sunshine are a lovely combination to behold. Kind of cold, of course– but pretty and allow the color of that cardinal to burst onto the scene. Wowsa!

    Liked by 1 person

  10. I was with you every step of the way, smiling cos you have to take shots of the bridge from every angle (me too), and oozing delight at the sight of the deer. And…oh! Pylons, yay!
    Enchanting walk, beautifully described. Now I need to get home, kick off my shoes and warm my feet! But I thank you for allowing me tag along (I hope I didn’t disturb your silence with my incessant chatter)

    Liked by 1 person

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