CJN.: Was the real Eva a wild character?
Steinmetz: She was no WASP, let’s put it that way. Direct, irreverent, packed with real and put-on emotions, her humour came from the extravagant positions she would take. Her theatre training and love of exaggeration made sure she was the focus of attention. I got to know her first when I was 12 and she was in her 60s. She moved into our [Eastern Townships] summer house with at least five dogs. My Swedish grandparents were already living there. They had a whippet – we had two dogs and a cat. On weekends, it was mayhem. I loved that atmosphere.
Eva never stopped telling stories. I picked up on her European sensibility – apparent in her tastes and habits: goose fat, Russian rye, garlic, wine, cigarettes. I didn’t grow up feeling very Canadian. Canadians ate hot dogs, we didn’t. Whatever Eva was,wherever she came from, I liked that place. I felt comfortable dreaming about it.
Full interview here.
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