The Quebec Carnival - Part Une


I have always been a sucker for a good festival even though I am the first to say that many don’t amount to much…same old cotton candy, local bands, artwork and performance artists but some are exceptional. Take the annual Quebec Carnival in Quebec City, Canada for instance. OK, so it’s a little chilly up there in February - what's the equivalent of -40 degrees Celsius anyway? Believe me, at that temperature - it’s moot point.

Knowing that my hot-blooded, native Texan husband would not share my enthusiasm about a near-arctic ‘vacation’, I nixed the idea of pumping him up with visions of ice sculptures, great cuisine, French-Canadian culture and dog-racing. Instead, I reached down into my imaginary bag of “Things-I-Want-To-Accomplish-in-My-Life” cards and pulled out the one that said…”The Quebec Carnival.” He relented.

Woo Hoo! I was so excited. Let the planning begin…

Dallas to Montreal... stay in a quaint little boutique hotel in Old Montreal for a couple of nights, then off to Quebec City via train for The Quebec Carnival! I could hardly contain myself. I tried to recruit other friends to join us (and you know who you are) but for some reason, they were just not interested.

Anyway, during the planning stages of our trip, I came across yet another reason to go…Quebec City had a real ICE HOTEL!!! I had seen one once on The Travel Channel and thought it would be cool to stay in one. A little pricey, a night in The Ice Hotel would be worth it as this was a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity! I called Doug at work to share my great find – I could tell by his tone that he was apathetic. “Do me a favor” he said, “Look into it a little more, before you book us.” Fair enough.

I soon learned that you are expected to sleep in a sub-zero sleeping bag, upon an ice-bed covered in fur when staying at The Ice Hotel. The kicker is that none of the rooms had bathrooms as ice-toilets and sinks would be problematic. So… if you had to get up in the middle of the frosty night to use the facilities, you would have to schlepp down the snow covered hallways to the heated bathroom trailer where upon I would probably just wind up spending the night.

The good news was that The Ice Hotel offered tours daily and that would be just fine with me.

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