Friday, 7 April 2017

Plein Air Ensemble Spring 2017 Trip to Orford, Quebec - Part 1

Blog 14

When I wrote this blog, I was in Orford, Quebec, for this year's spring Plein Air Ensemble trip.

Thursday, March 30, 2017

Janis and I arrived in the late afternoon at “Orford Music” after a good drive. The sun was shining from the sky and it was really warm in the car. Outside, the landscape changed too. At some point I realized that there was hardly any snow left. Here in Orford, the ground is still covered with snow but definitely less than in Ottawa. However, the snow system that will hit Ottawa tomorrow, will also come to this area with about 10 cm of snow from Friday evening to Saturday evening.

After we arrived, we got the groceries and had a nice dinner in a pizzeria with a wood burning oven. Now, we are enjoying the quietness of the our house at “Orford Music”. The centre is in surrounded by trees, paths and a small lake. Right now, Janis and I are the only guests of the centre. This will change tomorrow, when the rest of our group as well as another group will arrive. We will have a great time because our group has one of the buildings all to itself. The rooms are basic but comfortable, and we have a big kitchen and a huge meeting room to paint and host our happy hours and evening activities. Fantastic!

Friday, March 31, 2017

When we woke up the sun was shining beautifully but was already hiding behind clouds after breakfast. The lack of sun made everything look rather flat. We decided to check out the Marais de la Rivière aux Cerises, a marsh in downtown Magog offering 6 km of year-round trails that lead through a range of ecosystems. Due to the milder weather, the paths were very muddy but the bog walk was dry and a perfect spot to create our first painting of the trip. We were facing the Mont Orford. For a while the sun even looked through the clouds again, but soon the wind picked up and you could really feel that snow was on its way.

The snow held off until the late evening. By then, we had already greeted the group of painters and enjoyed a nice meal at bistro of “Orford Music”. It is always nice to see each other after half a year. There is always lots to catch up on.
After dinner some of us played cards, others chatted away while we listened to our musical members play jazz and blues. It is always lovely to have them provide entertainment for all of us.

Where we are going tomorrow depends on the snow. If it is really snowing the whole day, we will have no other choice but to paint indoors – either from inside our cars or from the meeting room, but maybe we will find out that the 10 cm of snowfall forecasted were only an April Fools' Day joke.

To read the next part of my travelogue please return to my blog next Friday. If you know think anyone in your circle of friends and family members would enjoy my blog, please forward it. Thank you for helping me to increase my audience.

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