Merry Christmas, Happy Hanukkah and as of tomorrow Happy Kwanzaa! I hope everyone was able to have a pleasant day with their family and/or friends. I hope those who often feel sadness this time of year or those who recently lost loved ones were able to find a way to safely and peacefully make it through the day.
June 22, 2018 started after a much needed nights rest following a busy day. I woke up, had a little breakfast and put together a list of places I wanted to see in the area. I checked out of my hotel and hit the road. I love lighthouses…probably because I love water and lighthouses are always there…on the water! Among the first things I saw though when I headed out was a field of horses…among my favorite things! They are so strong, muscular and beautiful! Below are just a few images of the majestic creatures I saw heading out.
Each place I visited will not necessarily be presented in the order I saw them but you will see everything I saw that day….well, I won’t make you see every single picture I took…I will hand pick the ones I like best! One of my stops today was Arisaig, NS and the Arisaig Light Point. The village of Arisaig NS is a quaint fishing village and I fell in love. When I went down to the waterfront a large group of fisherman were sitting outside at a table playing cards…I attempted to take a picture of them but they didn’t seem to appreciate that idea so I lowered my camera, held up my hand and walked away. Know your audience! They gave no indication they may want me to approach them or talk to them so walking away seemed the wiser idea.
Moving on to the next stop along the way in today’s story is Ballantynes Cove. Though I was looking for this stop I came upon it suddenly when I drove around a sharp curve in the road. I pulled over as far off the shoulder as I could and walked across the street. When I was standing out there I did not realize someone’s house was right below me and the gentleman who owned the home was in the driveway bringing in his trash cans…it is nearing sunset at this point. He stopped what he was doing and invited me onto his property. He and his wife had built the home a few years earlier after retiring and moving to the area from Calgary. There beautiful home with a wrap around porch was on the edge of the property overlooking St George’s Bay and the Ballantynes Cove Marina. He invited me up onto the porch and invited his wife to come out and meet me…Dave & his wife Sue made me feel very comfortable. We talked for about 10 minutes while I took pictures and off I went. As I was leaving the property I spotted an old-fashioned aluminum wringer washing machine that Sue used to plant flowers…she had not yet planted flowers for the season and it was a bit overgrown with weeds but I asked if I could take a picture of it and permission (following laughter) was given!
Another stop during this lovely day was the Cape George Lighthouse at Cape George Point. This lighthouse can be visited by driving up a steep, pot-holed, rocky dirt road! I did not think my poor car was going to make it up the road and if it did, it would not survive the drive back down! It was well worth the drive to see the lighthouse and look out at the bay. I would guess it was pretty close to the Golden Hour by the time I made it up the road. I have included the obligatory picture of the dandelion weed along with images of the potholes to be endured and a shadow selfie of myself…no, I am not really 40′ tall!
One of my first stops of the day was Burntcoat Park & Lighthouse…here you get to walk along the sea floor! When the tide is out you can walk down stairs and rocks to go out and walk the sea bottom. Be sure to wear hiking boots! The rocks, even when the tide has been out for awhile, are slippery and there is some mud. I did not dare walk the sea bottom or go to far on the rocks because silly me wasn’t quite sure what I was going to be seeing and I wore flip flops! The ranger would only let me go so far though she did offer me a hand to go a little further than I had…I am a klutz so I declined the offer. If I were go to this location again I would remember to bring hiking boots! So very cool! Remember to review the tide charts before heading there or if you forget, they do have them posted near the parking lot. You do not want to be down on the bottom when the tide comes in…from what I was told it comes in pretty quick and it is touted as the fastest and highest tide in the world. This sea floor…it is the North River/Bay of Fundy.
After leaving Ballantynes Cove I saw a little side road with water off in the distance and decided to head down there. It was getting darker and I needed to get to the hotel for the night but I can’t resist water so I went exploring. I didn’t stay long but I thought the side trip was worth it.
On my way to my hotel in Antigonish NS, I drove through Maitland NS and stopped along the road to enjoy the North River and Tidal Bores. Beautiful, beautiful country!
Backing up a little bit I did take a handful of random pictures along the road from Halifax to Antigonish (pronounced Anna-gone-ish…at least that is what is sounded like to me). It is a very green countryside with farms and churches. My kind of road trip! Ok…the full moon is in the wrong folder…that actually should have been in the folder I am going to next but I will include those here since they are leading up to sunset. The gentleman on his cell phone at the end of the pier cracked me up…it just seemed so out of place.
One last post for the night. I stayed at the “Coastal Inn” in Antigonish. I searched for this around 3:00 or so using TripAdviser. Reviews were mixed but nothing horribly negative so I booked. Turned out (though I have been calling it “hotel” throughout this post) that it is not a hotel or an inn…it is a motel. It looked decent from the front and I found out the next day most of the rooms at the front had been renovated not too long prior to my visit. The room I was assigned…hmmm! It said it had a security deadbolt…ahhhh, NO! It was one of those chains you slide across and the doorknob was so flimsy it probably could have been knocked open with a spoon…the door appeared to be that flimsy hollow core junk you get in very inexpensive homes…in fact, my house had those hollow core doors when I bought it but they were on the bedrooms, not the front door of the house! The bathroom was so small that you could barely move to turn around to sit on the toilet. The bed was comfy though the mattress felt old, the AC did not work and it was about 95 degrees in the room, the outlet was not safe and actually sparked the next day…I had booked for 2 nights and I stayed 2 nights but never again! I was assured if I came back renovations would be done but they didn’t even want to spend money to have an electrician come check out the arcing outlet! I did get credit for one night but when I received an e-mail from the owner or manager it accidentally included an exchange between her and her husband (he was the “maintenance guy”) that indicated I was a lousy guest and was never to be allowed back. When I called her on this she said it was an error in communication and he was talking about another guest. Really? I wrote an honest TripAdvisor review and she wrote to me under the review and by text asking me to change my review. I don’t have that option once it is submitted but even if I could I would not have…it was an honest review. In her note to me on TripAdvisor responding to my review she called me by my full name – first and last! Unacceptable and I texted and told her that…to her credit she did go in an remove my last name. No one is identified by their full name and she was wrong in doing that! Just bad business! I did hear from corporate with an apology…much appreciated but it would affect my decision to recommend them to anyone! First truly negative review I ever wrote for any place. I forgot about the clothes pin to hold the curtains closed and the pins used on the shower curtain…and lets not forget the “watch your step” drop getting off the porch! Enter at your own risk.
Thanks for traveling with me through this long day. Sunshine, water and the beauty of the countryside…what I love about a good road trip!
“Travel makes one modest. You see what a tiny place you occupy in the world.” – Gustave Flaubert
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