Dailies: Weekend Update March 2-3, 2013
We could have done it in less time, but we finally arrived in Gravelbourg, Saskatchewan at about 5pm on Saturday. The weather was fine all the way from Medicine Hat, but it so happened that we hit a rough stretch of pavement on Highway 4, just off the Transcanada, that shook us so hard a cabinet burst open and rained glass jars everywhere. Only one broke open, but it did contain polenta, so some of that is embedded in the carpet now for the long run. Up to this point, we have encountered relatively sparse municipal areas, with the residents of a given community occupying a large amount of space. In Gravelbourg, it seems to be the opposite: as we journeyed through vast fields of snow on the perilously tiny Highway 43, Gravelbourg seemed to be an oasis just over the horizon.
The town is lovely, though, despite the snow. It is somewhat larger than Cremona, about 1100 residents in total, and is noteworthy for having a very large Catholic cathedral, Our Lady of the Assumption. The francophone heritage here is clearly evident, with most businesses having signage in both English and French. Even the handlettered signs advertising a for a teenaged babysitter are bilingual! We’re told that the town is municipally thus by law, and so all official signage is in both languages.
We have set up outside of La Palestre, the local hockey, skating, and curling rink, which is on the east side of town. Tomorrow we will head back in to meet with our contact, Guylaine, who runs the theatre in addition to her duties at the town office. And then it’s all about meeting new people! Here’s to hoping we can polish our French.