Sept. 8, 2013
I’m going to start this post by relating my last 24 hours. Yesterday morning looked like an ideal time for a bike ride, so I loaded our bike onto the tender and went ashore, tying the tender up to a dock owned by a local fellow who had said we could use it anytime we wanted. I offloaded the bike and proceed up the hill to the road. As I was adjusting the seat, a car came by and stopped. The woman inside said “Hi, I’m Claire. You must be Kathy. My husband said to tell you that if you need a car, take that one over there. The keys are in it”. On further discussion I learned that Claire and David are the parents of Alan and Ann Marie, who have allowed us to use their wifi for internet connection as their house is close to the point where we are anchored. David saw me bringing the bike ashore and thought perhaps I planned to ride it to the grocery store and maybe it would be easier if I had a car. I explained that I was just going out for some exercise and sightseeing. Claire pointed out her house and I saw David waxing his car in the driveway. I stopped to say hello and 20 minutes later, finally set out on my bike ride.
My ride took me along Second Peninsula Road and is probably one of the most scenic bike rides I have ever done. I am normally not comfortable riding on roads, but this one had little traffic and seemed tailor made for biking. It did, however, have some real hills! My first stop was at a beautiful cemetery where I searched for and found a geocache. Then I continued my ride for another five miles or so, finally reaching the point of the peninsula. The last house was a beautiful white house on a hill with amazing flowers along the front. There was an older man tending to the flowers and I said hello as I went past. I soon reached the end of the road and turned around, this time stopping to comment on the amazing flowers. “Well”, he said, “the really good flowers are around back. Ride on back there and see”. So I did. What a magnificent place this was. Perfectly manicured lawn – and not a small one! Flowers everywhere, house in perfect repair. I returned to chat with the man, whose name is Wilfred, and soon learned that he and his wife grow almost all the flowers, mostly annuals, in their house and hothouse. They take care of all the landscape themselves. When I asked if he was from the area, he said he had “lived here for 91 years, except for 3 years during The War”. One of ten children, he had built the house in 1951. On a sadder note, he mentioned that his wife had taken a fall earlier in the year and was now in a rehab hospital in Halifax. I could have stayed and talked to this man all day, but wanted to get back to watch some sailboat racing.
As I wound my way back along the road, I marveled at the scenery and tried to take it all in. I stopped again to chat with David and we arranged to get together soon for drinks. I hurried back to the boat, offloaded the bike and grabbed my camera to go watch the Nonsuch races (more on that later). Following the races, I came back to the boat, downloaded the photos I had taken and made a couple CD’s ot them, showered, then headed to the Yacht Club for drinks with the Nonsuch owners, many of whom I had met yesterday. They invited me to join them for dinner and I barely made it back to the boat before dark.
So that was today – and lest you think it unusual, it seems to be quite the norm here in Nova Scotia. When we last reported in, we were in Halifax. We departed Halifax and headed south to Chester, a lovely town in a beautiful bay. We enjoyed exploring the town but I was looking forward to returning to Mahone Bay to meet our “friends” there. We had stopped briefly in Mahone Bay on our way north, anchoring for a couple nights in Mader’s Cove. As we were departing Mahone Bay, I received several emails from people who had seen the boat, googled our website, and sent emails offering dinners, rides to town, or anything else we might need. Though we had not had the chance to meet any of these people on our first trip, I had started a nice email dialogue and we had looked forward to getting together on our return. Soon we were anchored back in Mader’s Cove and we began a great chapter of our cruising adventures.