Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Homeward Bound

It was with some regret that we left our new friends, Allison & David, in New Brunswick on Monday. They were great hosts and we had a wonderful time getting to know them and members of the four francophone Baptist churches in that part of NB. I’m convinced we need to make every effort to recruit this young lady for ministry with Wycliffe! Allison has a real heart for missions, a gift for networking and building relationships, and good connections with the francophone Christian community. We really need people from that community in all levels of ministry in French-speaking West Africa, from prayer and financial support here in Canada to personal involvement overseas in all different kinds of work to help with the language development and Bible translation task. Something to think and pray about, Allison! :)

Our drive from Bathurst north through Campbellton and on to Rimouski was a scenic one, despite the pouring rain we first encountered. After Campbellton, the road followed the course of a winding river with high hills on either side before opening up into farmland as we approached the St. Lawrence River. Then there was so much fog coming in off the St. Lawrence that we felt like we were driving through pea soup in one town. A good reason to stop for a Tim Hortons! And further along the route, we had the best poutine in the entire world at a little roadside fast-food stand where we stopped for lunch. Lots of fries, lots of good gravy, and a whole pile of cheese curds on top! Boy, was it ever good!

We’d planned to try and catch the ferry at Rivière-du-Loup so that we could take the more scenic route along the north shore. But we missed it by half an hour and didn’t want to wait another three hours for the next one. Friends in Quebec City were expecting us for supper. André & Johanne have been good friends since we first met during our French studies in Quebec City in the mid-90s, and are always ready to open their home to us when we pass through their area.

This afternoon, we met someone from Burkina Faso! He and his Quebecois wife are friends of Allison & David, and she arranged for us to connect (see what I mean about her networking skills?). So we stopped in Trois Rivières where he is a church leader and spent a pleasant couple of hours with them. We had a lot to talk about and it was again hard for us to finally ask for the road. We could have talked for another few hours, but Kathy & I wanted to put a few more miles behind us before calling it a day. Otherwise it would be too long a trip to get home tomorrow.

We’d originally considered stopping again in Montreal, but after some consideration (higher motel prices, terrible roads, tons of construction, arrival at rush hour, and the need to spend at least half an hour getting to a place that is really only five minutes away were a few of the determining factors we took into account!) decided to try Drummondville on the south shore instead. We’re glad we did. We found a decent motel at a good price and took advantage of this last opportunity to eat at a Normandin restaurant for supper. They have good food and we can’t spend time in Quebec without eating at least one meal at a Normandin, a Quebecois restaurant chain. They must have liked us too. It took the waitress over 30 minutes to bring our bill and take our credit card to pay for the meal after we’d finished eating. I think she’d have liked us to stay even longer, but Kathy & I had finally run out of things to talk about and were ready to hit the road with or without her!

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