I have learned two things from my recent trip to St. Claude: (Photo 1)
1. I wasn’t going to see everything I wanted to in a single day,
2. John and Margaret Quayle are the perfect tour guides.
I told everyone last week that I (Randy/RJ) was heading out to St. Claude, and I was told that I had to meet these two. I’m glad I did. We drove around as John and Margaret educated me on everything they knew about the village. (Spoiler: it’s a lot.) After I thanked them for the tour, I accepted the fact that I wasn’t going to hit everything I wanted to, and that was okay. Rather than focus on what I didn’t hit, let’s focus on what I did!
As I drove into St. Claude, I went to the Smoking Pipe. (Photo 2 & 3!) John did mention to me that the pipe was not actually smoking (which I suppose is a good thing) but nevertheless. It was the first thing I learned about the village, so I had to see it in person. I feel like you could add a red carpet there at the entrance, and it would work. Such an awesome view.
I had been informed that there will soon be beautiful gardens to the left of the pipe, so I left that for the next time I came through. Looking to the left, I saw the Gaol. I received a bunch of requests to take in the gaol, so I totally did. Apparently it was quite good for holding people who “had a little too much fun on a Friday night”. Thankfully, I went on a Thursday. (Photo 4!)
Continuing down the road, I came to the war memorial. I always get a little emotional when I see how towns pay their respects to those who paid the ultimate price, and this was no different. I like how they also paid tribute to those from France who fought. If I remember correctly, it was due to the fact some soldiers weren’t officially Canadians yet, and still volunteered to fight. Tons of respect. (Photos 5-7!) It also was the originaly site of the cemetary, and although we took a slight peek on the original drive, I didn’t have time to take a look at the new spot. next time.
Now, my wife is going to be furious when she sees the next part. She’s a huge history buff. (Photos 8-16!) Thankfully for me, I did not take a look inside the museums as some are not open just yet. So, that’s another reason to go back with her. Even cooler? They are all on one stretch of road. The big red barn is awesome, as is the windmill behind it. The Dairy Museum is a must-see, and I want to see more when I’m back. I snuck a peek at some of the equipment and machinery behind the buildings, but I couldn’t get a good photo of them all. It’s one of those “have to see it in-person” things. The train station is classic, and I’d really like to get a good view inside. I love the feel of an old train station. I took a photo of the one-room school house, and as I was walking back to my car, I decided to give some love to the arena/curling rink. Broomball rules, and you all should play it.
As I wrapped up my quick trip, I headed to the place where I belong: Tallboys. As a 6’5″ dude, I felt I had to stop it. Oh, hey. Grab the poutine. I didn’t have the appetite for the giant one, but maybe next time! (Photos 15-16!)
As for next week, I’m still deciding where I should go. I have a few ideas, but I want to hear from you. Where should I go next? What would you recommend?
Thanks for reading, and thanks to the people of St. Claude for welcoming me!