The day started with another bus trip, although much shorter this time since Montreal is only about half an hour from Laval. We had the chance to visit a beautiful viewpoint up on the mountain, and then headed into old town for a walking tour. Really, the only problem that it was raining with varying degrees of enthusiasm pretty much ALL day! Not a problem when you're indoors, but it has a bit more of an impact when on a walking tour. Our brave guides did their best to move us from covered space to covered space while giving us a feel for this lovely and historic city. Despite the less than ideal circumstances, our choristers very much enjoyed seeing the area.
With the tour finished, it was time to prepare for our first formal concert at Notre Dame Basilica in Montreal. So, it was back to the bus to pick up our dresses, as well as the keyboard and amp (the Basilica only has an organ, no piano!), and haul them up the cobblestone hill to step-up. The audience for this concert
was HUGE and very gracious, and the girls sounded lovely. Unfortunately, the concert came to a somewhat abrupt and anticlimactic ending when the guide who was scheduled to lead our girls on a tour of the space following the concert decided that it was time for the tour to start, and came up right behind Ms. Jenkins during the final piece to let her know they should stop mid-song to start the tour. Of course, the girls were as professional as could be in finishing the piece and responding positively to their audience. We were particularly moved by the number of audience members who came up afterward to express how much they enjoyed the performance, and to
apologize for the abrupt concert ending!
While we had originally planned to watch fireworks that evening, we all agreed we had been in the rain long enough and loaded the bus to check-in to the hotel before heading to dinner. Well, that's when we discovered that our original hotel had cancelled our reservation. Oops! They had the contract, just not the rooms. Seemlessly transitioning, we headed directly to dinner (which was REALLY good, by the way) while the hotel worked to rebook us elsewhere. It worked out well, since we spent the evening at the Hilton Garden Inn, which was nicer than our original hotel, and we didn't have to pay for the upgrade! The evening wrapped with a little pool night, which was surprisingly popular, despite the amount of water the girls had endured earlier in the day. And all's well that ends well!