St-Augustin

April 9 2014

Another day road tripping means another day of having cramps in your arse, legs burning out of pain and headaches out of dehydration. Don’t get me wrong, I love taking road trips, but it is extremely tiring. Today was no exception. We left Columbia to go to St-Augustin. My aunt, Matante Huguette, won four tickets for the Masters golf competition. They are held in Augusta, Va. My dad, my mom, my uncle and my aunt went to the masters yesterday and I slept until two pm. It was a fantastic lazy day with my other aunt, Matante Christiane. Anyways four hours of driving later, we arrived in St-Augustin. We stayed at the Courtyard Marriott. This is my favourite city in the United States. It is the oldest city in the USA and everything about it is breathtakingly superb. It is so pretty in an old, Spanish and almost Louisiana-style. The houses are ancient almost breaking down with Spanish moss hanging heavily onto the yard. The streets are narrow, only big enough for one car. Most walls of the city are made of shell. The city at night is buzzing with live music and tourists. It is extremely charming. The restaurant we went to was called Harry’s Seafood Grill. It was really crowded due to the fact that it was delectable food. It was a Lousiana styled restaurant. Jimbalaya, sausage, meats, steaks, salmons and pastas are only a portion of what was offered at this restaurant. I had red beans, white rice and sausage. Amazing. It was delicious, but it could of served all six of us it was so big. I kept some for leftovers. That evening was warm and I was just happy that my Canada Goose winter jacket wasn’t on my shoulders for once. The air was humid, but a cool breeze evened it out. The restaurant, Harry’s seafood grill looked very Spanish at night outside on the terrace. Multiple people chit-chatting, a surfing-looking musician was singing Jimmy Buffet songs and laughter filled my ears. It was enchanting to see the garlands of lights hanging over the terrace and under the Spanish moss. It was romantic, charming and it looked like an image coming out of a fairy tale. That night, I slept like a baby happy and excited for the next day.
~
April 10 2014

The sun is shining brightly, the sky is blue and cloudless, the air is warm with a small cool breeze and the people were happy and bright smiled. The restaurants are buzzing with people chit-chatting, the streets are filled with schools kids screaming and shouting playfully and people laughing enjoying the gorgeous day.

welcome to St-Augustin

That would of been the perfect sign to enter the city. As we left the hotel at around 9 or 10 o’clock in the mourning, the weather was paradise. My uncle wanted to take photos, so my dad drove us down the road towards the Fountain of Youth attraction. Magnolia Lane is right in front of the attraction; it is the oldest street in St-Augustin. People started living there in 1513. The houses on this street are old, creaking and gorgeous. This street is the most gorgeous street ever. I remembered three years ago coming to this street and it was at least 20 degrees colder than that day. I take out my Hasselblaad camera, my family take out their own cameras (digital though). And away the clicks and clacks of the cameras focussing and capturing the oldest street in a North America.
The fountain of youth, we wanted to go in it, but we didn’t have enough time.
Back in the car towards downtown St-Augustin. This is where the excitement starts. We stop in a parking lot right beside the most haunted place in the city: the battle fort. I take my camera bag out and it is my new purse. When you don’t have enough arms for a purse and a camera bag (or your back isn’t strong enough for both), you have to sacrifice your purse. I transfer my wallet, gum, sunglasses and IPhone from my multicoloured New Zealand boho purse to my Lowepro camera bag. It is heavy nonetheless.

You have to suffer in order to take beautiful pictures

-Margot

My family and I walk to the pedestrian mall where unique clothing stores, restaurants, ice cream shops and cafés fill it. It is quite crowded due to the good weather we are having. Shoppers of all different states and countries walk up and down this paved street. It reminds me of Sparks Street in Ottawa. As we walk down, I see a sunglasses shop. I walk into it and see a variety of known-brand sunglasses. However something is off. The names are written differently then the real brands. These are fakes.

20$ for the polarizing ones and 10$ for the rest.

the shopkeeper says with a bright smile on his face. He is quite good-looking. He has brown hair which he ties with an elastic band in the back of his head. He wears a black hat and a blue, white and red plaid shirt. That’s all I could see because he stood behind the counter. I am mostly attracted to the “Raybans”. The black square sunglasses for 10$? Why not? I buy them and the shopkeeper starts chatting me up. We talk about where we are from. He’s from Detroit. He would cross over to Canada to drink whenever he felt like it. It was fun, but time to move on to another shop because my dad is getting very impatient. He starts saying we are here not to shop, but to take pictures and have quality family time…ok…we continue down the street mall and find the public restrooms. After our dash through there, my uncle and my dad are waiting for us close by it. My aunts are nowhere to be seen. “In jewelry store” my dad mumbles to me. Ahah! So, it wasn’t just me. My mom and I take this opportunity to go inside a clothing store. The fashion inside of there is as boring as a turtle’s neck. Once we reach the guys, my aunts are still not out. what a surprise My mom finally sees them coming and we continue down the street. We finally reach my favourite store so far: Red Pineapple. It is a unique, hippie and funky fashion store. Mind you, there isn’t just clothing inside of it. There is jewelry, pillows, art, pictures and other cute things. I want to buy them all. The dresses are colourful, made with lace, stripped, colour block and all look summery and fresh. The jewelry is funky, especially a certain one. I walk up to it and notice that it is an animal skull. Almost like a bird’s skull. It’s brown-gold and it’s on a chain. I put it on and it matches with the rest of my necklaces. I started a necklace collection in Kona Island, Hawaii. I bought my first necklace there. It is a native Hawaiian necklace with a silver tiki fella hanging off of it. The second was a gift from my parents. They travelled to New Zealand and bought me a Maori necklace. Now, this bird skull is added to the collection. I will always remember Red Pineapple. I will always remember St-Augustin. It is a historical, enchanting and wonderfully charming place that almost reminds you of a fairy tale. This city will take you away from the United States southern…Uhm…charm and drag you into a gorgeous storybook. From the shell made walls to the huge Spanish moss trees hanging over every street, it will make you fall in love with it.

Until next time,

Margot

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