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Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada
Brian & Deya met in Vancouver Canada. After a few years together we were married and made choices. One was not to have children the other was not to take life for granted. The rest is yet to come.

September 06, 2010

Quebec City to Newfoundland

Learn while the cost is low, one of our general rules for this trip is to avoid large cities. This is to avoid all the real hazards that come with going to town. Main thing: traffic, then people, then cost. When we pulled into the city it was packed and there where people everywhere. We were in a no-parking zone with no options, had a lot of stuff to take off the bikes and were left very exposed. Just as we were at critical mass several people started to approach us to ask questions. This was unfortunate because we were not ready for that and I would have loved to hang out and chat with these fine folks. Sorry Francisco, I’ll have to catch up to you in Chile, we’ll go riding.

Quebec City is fantastic and worth going, I’d take it over Montreal any day, for a vacation spot anyways. We enjoyed the comforts of a place right in the heart of the city and were able to walk around to all the important stuff, which is not typical of us since riding leaves us limited to boots, flip flops and budget constraints. Thanks to the Brittains for hooking us up, you guys rock and we made the most of it.

A few more days here would have been great but that’s not the first time this has been the case. The adventure awaits so we had to head out, which by the way was not easier than heading in. We took with us a valuable lesson that entering an area surrounded on all sides, equipment and personal items exposed makes us a huge target. This was the low cost lesson from Quebec City and we’ll have to develop techniques to mitigate this problem if we find ourselves in similar circumstances in less favourable places, like Mexico City or New Orleans.

As we exited Quebec and entered the Province of New Brunswick the fist two things you can notice is the fine lawns, front yards and the flowers atop the tombstones. The next thing you notice are the colours and star of the Acadians. This is a friendly and proud group of people out here. The landscape also seemed to improve immensely and the riding improved likewise.
We we’re late into the day and we arrived at a friends parents place, we had to knock on a few doors to find it, the result of riding into the night, but had a warm welcome when we arrived. Our hosts put us up in their spare bed and we had a fabulous sleep. The next day we checked out town, Sainte-Anne De Madawaska, and we’re treated to breakfast at a local diner. Good stuff, later we got some groceries and made dinner for the hosts, I believe they enjoyed it! It also gave us some leftovers for the next day. It’s a simple thing but it’s nice when we have the opportunity to do something for people that put us up, even though they don’t expect anything.

The next day we headed towards the coast and landed near some crown land on the beach at Pointe-Sapin. This is where Deya wiped out and as luck would have it I caught it all on film! Of course her version was vastly different than the actual footage until we viewed it, now we just don’t discuss it. haha.


Just before we had a chance to set up the N.B. welcome party arrived, it was a whirlwind of friendly drunk guys feeding us beer. As quickly as they spun in they left, it was a good time and reassuring that we had made it to the Maritimes. It was actually a pretty good experience and set the tone for our time here.

On our way out we changed a few of our routing plans, nothing major but it put us into the Meacher's camp on P.E.I. To get there we had to traverse the Confederation Bridge, this thing is a real piece of work and worth googling if you’re an engineering geek and our buddy, whose folks we were visiting, had a hand in its construction.

We would be intruding into an upcoming event (Happy 50th Anniversary you two!) so we had to get in and get out quickly. The first night was one of the best sleeps I’ve had in a while and their camp was really nice, of course Murphy was there but we didn’t realize it at the time. The next morning when we were just about to have a dramatic departure Deya’s bike wouldn’t start. The battery seemed to be at about 9 volts. Not sure how exactly but there it was, so after some trouble shooting with the multimeter we put it to the jumpstart. That worked and we now were able to have an anticlimactic departure.

We weren’t going too far though, about 40 km if we wanted, and would be staying at the Meacher's home in Charlottetown for one more evening. But instead of a direct route we headed up to the North Cape and the Wind Research Center which added several hundred kilometres. That evening we were riding straight for a bridge that was out, a gentleman in his yard flagged us over to give us some good directions to get around it. I asked if he was aware of any nearby camping and he didn’t hesitate to offer his sail boat for the night! Thanks George for the evening, Paul is a funny guy too and we had a nice night. We locked everything up, cleaned up the cushions and turned off the power. We came by to say thanks (hope you’re reading this) but it was pretty early so we didn’t want to wake you up. Thanks again for your hospitality.

Paul is the night watchman for the Marina, he told us these fairly funny stories about the birds, cranes and gulls mostly, and the super loud “CRAAWWW” that would come out of nowhere. He laughed and said, “You’ll probably stick your head out of the boat in the middle of the night and scare the wits out of yourself from the monster bird screeching right in front of you.” He told the story so well that I didn’t believe it until I just about crapped in my pants when I stuck my head out of the boat at 2am and was blasted by this massive sreaming grey bird, I just laughed.

En route we stopped at the seaside town of Victoria, it’s a lovely little place. We had taken a break and were approached by ‘Bill’ who was a real character. Bill had just finished shooting a film called ‘Dancing with Dad’ (look for it at the film festivals next year) and we had a generally good conversation. It was a fun and rewarding conversation, the way I think most should be. Bill showed up, talked an interesting talk, then left asking for nothing but leaving a nice gift of gab.

We had a nice walk around Charlottetown; it’s a little town in good shape and is nice to hang out in. We did the typical things, chilled by the water, conversed by the Starbucks and watched a heroin deal go down on our walk home.

We were sorting out stuff when the report of Hurricane Earl appeared. It sounded bad and caused us a real dilemma. Do we stay or do we go? What the heck does Earl do to the Maritimes and Newfoundland? Will we be able to make it to the Island from P.E.I in time. Is it worth going? We can’t keep mooching off the Meachers. In the end we stayed another night, headed out and caught the ferry to Nova Scotia, from there it was a long day to North Sydney.

2 comments:

  1. The video does not really show the difficulty of riding on sand... But looking down does not help for sure...

    ReplyDelete
  2. Anonymous12 July, 2012

    Photos and videos never catch the difficulty. Anyone who has ridden in sand understands, though.

    ReplyDelete