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Subject: Prologue - Saint(e)-François(e)
(Posted on Jan 21, 2014 at 10:40PM ) Tags:
One might think that a simple name like Saint-François (Saint Francis) and its companion feminine derivative, Sainte-Françoise, would be a straightforward matter. No, no, no, because we are talking Catholic Church in Quebec. Lulu knew this stuff dead cold, and went on a lot about it to me back when I was working together with him as a teenager.

In fact, there are so many places of the same base name, that the omniscient “ they” (i.e. the Church) had to put a lot of descriptive extensions thereafter to keep them all straight. Yet Lulu had them all down pat inside his head. Of course he did! 

Remember, for the purposes of this discussion, we are keeping it all inside Quebec.  It’s crazy, but here’s a non-exhaustive list:

Saint-François (Laval)
Saint-François-de-l'Île-d'Orléans
Saint-François-de-la-Rivière-du-Sud
Saint-François-Ouest
Saint-François-Régis
Saint-François-Solano
Saint-François-Station
Saint-François-du-Lac (of/on  the lake)
Saint-François-de-Sales
Saint-François-d'Assise

Note there are several "Saint-François-Xavier," "Saint-François-d'Assise", and "Saint-François-de-Sales" spots. And with all of the above, there is further discrimination between a village, geographical area, and an unincorporated area. Makes perfect sense to me!

It is also an electoral district, Saint-François, created in 1972 as well. D-oh! What the #@&%?!

Yo, it’s a river, and a lake (and national park/wildlife area)! 
Saint-François (River)
Lac (Lake) Saint-François
Plage (Beach) St-François - summer hamlet on south shore of Lac Saint-François
Baie St-François - long open bay of Lac Saint-François in front of Valleyfield

Naturally, to stay consistent, there is also a second Lac Saint François as well, but in all fairness, it's (usually) called Le Grand (Big) lac Saint François, but I wonder if it is actually bigger than the other one. Hey, why not a third while we're at it?

Add an “e” to both ends of the name in general, making it feminine, and may the mayhem morph much more. This be out of control.

Sainte-Françoise (Bas-Saint-Laurent)
Sainte-Françoise (Centre-du-Québec)
Sainte-Françoise-de-Lotbinière
Sainte-Françoise-de-Cabrini
Sainte-Françoise-Cabrini (it ain’t the same as the one above)
Sainte-Françoise-Romaine (x2 actually; yeah, I know, go figure)

Want to ever hide from folks? Who needs to run off to some remote spot off the grid. Just tell them you are in Saint(e)-François(e). Be nice and specific—let ‘em know it’s in the province of Quebec., to give them a fair start. 

Here’s a great resource if you are REALLY curious about all this, and have some spare time on your hands.
Canadian Geographical Names Data Base (CGNDB)
You can query this puppy all day long for mounds of mirth and mischief.

This other place name site was also pretty useful as well.

Hey, don’t blame me for all this. I just grew up there well after the fact. My head hurt just even trying to put this all together in rather rough form as it is.

And the world ain’t complicated either. Best to stick to single guy wedding travels all over the world for fun and games.