Part 2 – March 19
Day two of our Ottawa Adventure started late because Sofia was having a fever, she was not able to sleep well and so am I ( have to check her frequently during the wee hours of the night/morning ). At first we decided that Sofia and I will stay at the hotel while Sam and Lauren will go with our relatives to explore Ottawa. After awhile, it has been decided we go on our separate ways, our relatives will explore the city by themselves.
Sofia really wanted to go out, thus we decided to bring the car and drive around, this will be much convenient for all of us wind chill is around -12 but good thing Mr. Sun is up giving us a warmer feeling.
National Gallery of Canada (www.gallery.ca)
An eye catching bronze spider will greet everyone before going inside the National Gallery of Canada. Called Maman, created in 1999 and cast in 2003 by renowned Franco-American artist Louise Bourgeois as a tribute to her mother. The sculpture has 26 marbled eggs in it’s underbelly , standing 9.25meters tall and weighing 6,000 kilograms and according to NGC’s website this was the most expensive purchase of the gallery, worth $3.25 million…wow!
There is a fee when you enter the gallery, for a family of four we availed of the family pack which is $24.00, which I think is pretty reasonable.
There was an exhibit entitled Human Scale, which I really like it shows a sculpture of a head of a baby and a girl. Sofia was so excited to see it and I explained to her that when she was brought out to this world she looks like the sculpture of the baby girl ( with blood ) and that the umbilical cord is our connection and her means to get food and nutrients from me.
Sadly, we were not able to finish the whole gallery because we need to be in Rideau Hall by 1pm but here are some more pictures. I would definitely go back to NGC when we come back to Ottawa.
Rideau Hall (www.gg.ca)
Rideau Hall is the residence and workplace of the Governor General of Canada since it’s confederation in 1867. Visit to this place is Free. There are months wherein visit needs reservations so before heading to this place check their website for more information.
The Governor General represents the Queen in Canada and exercises the responsibilities of head of State on behalf of the Queen. He is also the commander-in-chief of Canada. Governor General is appointed by Her Majesty from the listed that would be given by the Prime Minister.
Also, we have learned that when Her Majesty or any member of the Royal family comes to visit Canada they will stay in Rideau Hall and even head of states stays at Rideau Hall. When Pres. Obama visits Canada this June 2016, he will be staying here.
Since this is an actual residence and a workplace we were told that at times (especially during weekdays ) you might bump into the Governor General or his family members. Isn’t that cool ?
Here are some pictures from Rideau Hall.
These are the medals that the GG can give away
Some of the recipients of the medals
Extension of the Tent Hall
Grand Ballroom, this is were state dinners are held and awarding of medals
Tent Hall, it’s the prettiest room because its pink
Emblem of the current Governor General.
Our third museum visit is the Royal Mint of Canada ( www.mint.ca )
Established in 1908, the Royal Canadian Mint has become innovative, world-class provider of branded circulation coins, collectibles, acclaimed medals and bullion products. There are 3 locations of the Royal Mint one in Ottawa- where they produce collectible and investment coins; Winnipeg – where they produce circulation coins and one in Vancouver.
You need to schedule you guided tour also, you there is a fee when entering the Royal Mint, check their website for the fee. Since this place mint collectibles and investments coins and they use gold and silver taking pictures is not allowed inside ( except in the souvenir shop ).
The place is really nice, we were able to see the machines they use in minting coins and the raw materials use ( guess what that is ???? ). Also, there is a part there where the Royal Mint do mint coins for other countries, this happen if (1) the country is doesn’t have a capacity to mint coins (2) shortage of materials (3) other unforeseen reasons the country cannot mint coins. What happens is they enter into a contract with Royal Mint of Canada and that’s it. I was surprise to see the Philippines once had a contract with Mint in producing the 5 peso coin.
One awesome experience is carrying a 24 cart gold bar and it weighs 28 pounds and it cost and estimate of $500,000,000.00 or more ( you know gold prices fluctuates ).
The day is about to end but before that we headed back to the hotel we decided to visit Notre Dame Basilica ( www.notredameottawa.com) , we were just suppose to go inside and take some pictures but luckily the Saturday anticipated mass is just about to start and they are celebrating the Palm Sunday mass. For this time, mass is delivered both in English and French so we decided to stay and hear mass.
The Basilica is the oldest and largest church in Ottawa and the seat of the city’s Roman Catholic archbishop. Will get the guided tour next time we go back to Ottawa.
It was a tiring but educational day 2 for us, we learned so many things and we are really in awe with the designs of the structures we visited. Sofia was feeling fine, weather was just right for us to explore the area. So off to our hotel for a well deserve rest.
to be continued…