One delightful Sunday was spent in the countryside. Across the Ottawa River I was aware we were in a French area. On the Ottawa side of the bridge I was invited to ‘Drink Coca Cola’, on the far side to ‘Buvez Coca Cola’. We drove on through the woods to the sugar bush country, an area covered with snow around the bare stems of the maples, each with a small spigot stuck into the bark, dripping the clear sap into a can below. Large cauldrons had been set up above fires and into these the cans were emptied, boiling and bubbling away, the sap soon became concentrated into the yellow-brown maple syrup.
On a table nearby were shallow round pans about twelve inches in diameter, filled with soft snow, over which was poured the hot syrup, which almost at once congealed into a tacky mass of toffee while the youngsters crowded around twirling little sticks into this delight and sucking away. Only for a few weeks, while the snow is still on the ground and the sap is beginning to rise, can the syrup be gathered; once the buds appear the flavour is spoiled.