It was 36 hours of snow carving (OK, it was more like carving cement) crammed into a 48 hour period. It ended at 9:00am on a bright, sunny COLD (-33C with the wind) Sunday morning. We were done except we weren’t. Confused? Well, once the carving was over, the teams still had to walk back to the hotel. Walking back to the hotel is not a bad thing normally, but this was after a 24-hour day and we had to carry our tools (we have 2 fifty pound bags) to the hotel (about 5 blocks up a hill). Like I said, our day was still not done.
Were we happy? Yes and no. We felt that we did everything we could considering the block, but also knew that the piece could have been fabulous had we been able to work with a nicer block of snow.
We finished the front side as well as we could and it looked great. The patches worked like we hoped and the finish was smooth. All in all, we were very happy with how the front and sides looked. Some of the other blocks weren’t as smooth as ours and one could see holes and tool marks on them.
We voted for the Artists’ Choice award and left the site for the long walk towards food, warmth and a bed. We did not wait for two hours to talk with the judges as we felt that what we would say wouldn’t have made a difference.
The parade and award ceremonies were later in the afternoon. It was 30 minutes of standing around in the cold followed by a quick walk across the stage to be recognized and then waiting around to hear the winners. We didn’t win.
Afterward it was a drink of caribou (a feisty alcoholic beverage, which became popular in the early Carnivals. The recipe was created by Ti-Père, a business that was first established on Ste-Thérèse Street in the lower city, then, more recently, in Old Québec. Suffice it to say a typical caribou contains brandy, vodka, sherry and port… Wow!). With little sleep and even less food, this drink can hit you like a ton of bricks, or in our case, like a great big snow block. We followed this up with a walk by the sculptures. Kim took a nice photo of the finished piece that had some nice lighting.