Posted by: Silver | May 11, 2012

Montreal to Roxton Pond

Montréal to Saint-Hyacinthe:
Distance: 85 km
Ascent: 295 m
Cycling time: 5 hours, 20 minutes

Saint-Hyacinthe to Roxton Pond:
Distance: 40 km
Ascent: 256 m
Cycling time: 2 hours, 40 minutes

Actually, just in case anyone’s using this blog as a means of discovering the distance between places, it isn’t really 85 km from Montreal to Saint-Hyacinthe, but having worked out a lovely route along the lovely bike paths between these two places, I came to the bicycle/pedestrian bridge over autoroute 20 only to find it closed for ‘réfection’! 😦 Most of the other cyclists arriving at this unexpected blockage (and there were quite a few of them on that sunny Saturday afternoon!) were simply lifting their ultra-light little racing bikes over the barricade and using the bridge anyway: a philosophy that I’ve heard a lot all across Canada is that it’s better to ask for forgiveness than permission! Sadly though, that solution really wasn’t an option for Ranger and me, so, with the help of a couple of the above-mentioned local cyclists (one of whom even made a donation to SOS Children’s Villages as well!), I found an alternative route across the highway – a mere 10 km of extra pedalling… Oh well, at least it was sunny…

So after a briefer than expected stop in Saint-Hyacinthe, it was on to Roxton Pond, where I was wonderfully well cared for by the Granby Lions Club. Not only did they provide me with fabulously enthusiastic hosts (the bilingual wife of the couple read my entire blog – yes, all 200+ entries! – before I arrived!), but they also went to the trouble of organizing a public meeting so that I could tell the whole of Granby about SOS! I’ll be honest, I never actually expect much of a turnout at these sorts of events – who really wants to take the time to come and listen to someone they’ve never heard of talking about a charity they’ve never heard of, especially when they know she’ll be asking them for money at the end of it all as well?! – but thanks to the sterling efforts of the Lions and the Chevaliers de Colomb (who also provided the venue), around 40 people came to hear my brain-cogs whirring as I ad libbed my way through my presentation (I never had a script for my English presentations, and I didn’t see why my French-speaking audiences should be subjected to anything less authentically from-the-heart, even if it did mean that they had to finish a couple of my sentences when I suddenly realized that I was hurtling headlong into a vocabulary gap…).

And so, a successful réunion was sandwiched between a visit to a chocolate museum and a picnic in the park: my day in Granby was truly memorable, for all the right reasons. 🙂

I’ve had to wait at quite a few level crossings during my journey, but this was a first: waiting while a ship crossed my path… at the St Lambert locks in Montreal

Part of the cycle route out of Montreal took me along the Formula One racetrack! (I wasn’t going quite that fast, though…)

How different history might have been if Jesus really had had an escape ladder… I’ve seen quite a few similarly-adorned crosses around here: can anyone explain, please?!

A view of the landscape around Saint-Hyacinthe, posted for the sole purpose of satisfying my entirely random desire to ensure that, at least once, my blog includes the word ‘monadnock’…

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Responses

  1. Dear Silver

    Good to hear you are still travelling and with good spirits.

    The iconography of the ladder etc with the cross is explained at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Arma_Christi

    Basically, they represent the key items used at the very end of the crucifixion. The lance is used to pierce Jesus’ side to check he is dead (he was). The ladder was then used to remove the body from the cross, thus leaving it empty. The empty cross is then a sign of the resurrection.

    Best wishes

    Nigel

    • Thanks, Nigel! And so lovely to see that you’re still out there following my journey! 🙂 Say Hi to ARU for me!

    • Hi Nigel
      Thank you for the information about the cross.
      We hosted Tana and enjoyed her brief time with us.Yes, I did read all her blog and feel I know her friends in England.
      She has so much courage and passion for SOS CHildren’s Villages.
      Our best wishes to you Tana. Keep Happy!
      Cecile


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