by Shari Blaukopf, Montreal, Canada
For the past three years one of my very favourite sketching locations has been the area around the convent of the Congrégation de Nôtre-Dame in Pointe-Claire. I’ve sketched St. Joachim Church more times than I can count, the presbytery, the trees and the statues nearby. I’ve sketched the site from far and from near. You can imagine my sadness when I found out this summer that in December the few remaining nuns in the convent will be moving out of the location their order has been inhabiting for 230 years. The greystone building sits on a spit of land (locals call it The Point) that juts out into Lac St. Louis, right next to the historical windmill that I’ve sketched many times as well. For me there are also some memorable sketching experiences that happened in the very same spot I sat to do this sketch. There was the time a man asked me to take his photo for an online dating service, the time I spoke to one of the nuns who seemed to know more about me than she should have, and the time when the wind shook my car so fiercely I thought I might blow right into the lake. For now The Point—deemed a heritage site in 2013—will remain intact. I just hope I don’t show up there one day, sketchbook in hand, and find condos in the spot where the greystone used to be.