40-year old Abel travels to France from Quebec on a pilgrimage to explore the mother country and land of his ancestors. As he travels around and does all the things tourists are supposed to do, his expectations and perceptions are shattered and he is quickly forced to revise his romanticized image of France and adapt to reality. Nobody there cares about Quebec and he doesn't seem to have anything in common with them at all. As he travels to see the places where Rimbaud was born, lived, and died, he meets two women who show him the warmth and kindness he was searching for. Jeanne, an impoverished young widow is saddled with loneliness and problems stemming from her delinquent brother and drunken father. Anne is a family court judge who lives an uneventful life with her husband. Both women become Abel's friends and then his lovers.