Wednesday, July 21, 2010

New Hampshire, Vermont, and Quebec

Here is the New London Market on the Green, with musicians in the bandstand. (Actually there was one official musician, and she cleverly enlisted kids from the audience to provide the accompaniment, mostly percussion!) The green, also known as Sargent Common, is a large open space in the center of town on Main Street. It is used for fairs and festivals, as well as kids and dogs running around.

The Town Green at a Friday night concert. The building on the far left is the town offices, on the far right the Whipple Town Hall. Click the picture (or any of the pictures) to make it bigger...there’s lots of detail in this one!
The dog in the front is our Shih-tzu Hank. Children love to come and pat him. One group told us that their objective for the evening was to pat every dog there!

Across the street from the green is this large yellow wooden building. A former pharmacy, it now houses several small businesses including the local sports shop, selling and renting kayaks as well as bicycles and other equipment. Recreational kayaks are very popular in our area. They have a wide, flat bottom, are easy to paddle, and are very stable.

My feet, in my Oldtown Otter kayak. The lake loon family is off to the right, and Mount Kearsarge is in the background. This is the first time I’ve sketched while in the kayak.

This bouquet is composed of Pick Your Own flowers from Spring Ledge Farm in downtown New London.
Our middle of the room fireplace is in the rear with its mesh metal curtains.

We stopped to check the map on our way home from Burlington, Vermont. I loved the shape of the mountain in the distance, named Camel’s Hump. You can even see it from New York, on the other side of Lake Champlain.

Vernacular architecture fascinates me. This style is common in the province of Quebec. The owner of this house came out to greet me—and ask me what I was doing in his field. He proudly told me the house was three hundred years old. It is located in the village of St. Ferriol des Neiges, a few miles east of La Ville de Québec. The roof is now seamed metal, but maybe it was slate originally. The woodwork around the door and windows is ornately decorated and looks appropriately old. The surface is stucco, probably over field stone. We saw many similar houses constructed of stone without the stucco. I can envision my Québecois ancestors living in a home like this.

The Québecois are a proud, hardy people, with a genuine joie de vivre. They have maintained their culture and language for going on four centuries in this North American outpost, so far from France. I'm proud to have some of their blood flowing in my veins. Along with the Anglo-Saxon stuff, and a few drops of Native American too.

This present day Basilica of Sainte Anne de Beaupré was built in 1926 to replace one lost by fire. It is enormous. I tried to convey that in my drawing by allowing myself to get totally lost in the details of the grey stone façade. You can sense the scale by comparing the building to the size of the people on the stairways. I made a little inset drawing to show the overall shape. The word “accueil” means welcome, and the Quebec Province flag is flying proudly at the Welcome Center. Everyone we met in Quebec was kind and patient, and usually pretty good with English (or French French!). I got a minimum of sketches done because I was feeling unwell and therefore lacked powers of concentration. Next time.

I like this sign at a farm stand near Claremont, NH. Of course it changes from one week to another.