And we saw so many beautiful places: The Great Smokey Mountains, the amazing beaches on the Gulf of Mexico Coast, the spectacular and endlessly beautiful deserts of Texas, New Mexico, Arizona and Southern California, the Big Sur Coast, the Oregon Coast, the Rocky Mountains, The spectacular and endless Prairies, the rugged beauty of the Canadian Shield. But the fairest of them all is our home province of Nova Scotia. It seems to have a little bit of everything we saw (except the desert) compacted into a small, user-friendly space.
In this post I am going to give you a general over-view of our Nova Scotia summer and in subsequent ones I will tell you about specific things we did that you may enjoy when you visit.
We entered Nova Scotia on a spectacular summer day and drove through the Cobiquid Pass to Truro to spend a night visiting Arch's family in Truro:
|Peggy's cove in the distance|
|That is us, second from your left|
|The view from our window: sunset from the Wayside|
When we were not here we spent one month at Graves Island Provincial Park - two weeks as paying guests and two weeks as campground hosts - a job we really enjoyed. We recommended this campground to many people and all of who came loved it. It is hard to get into on weekends and there are limited hook-up sites that book up fast. Nova Scotia Provincial Parks open booking for their campgrounds April 1st of each year. If you are coming to NS and want to stay here I suggest you book as early as possible. We booked our two week site for mid July in early May.
The park is a small island near Chester, NS and you cross a causeway to get to it:
All the hook-up sites and most of the other sites have views of the ocean:
|The boats participating in Chester race week. This is a very distant shot.|
I asked permission to go on someone else's camp site to take this photo.
We also spent 6 weeks house sitting for friends who live in our old neighbourhood. This gave us a great chance to have the Adventure Bus serviced, to clean it out and repack, etc. It also reminded us of why we sold our big house - so much work, so little time! The things we really miss from our days in a sticks and bricks house are our great neighbours and the view. This stay gave us an opportunity to enjoy both.
|The view from the deck of the home we house-sat|
And most important of all has been time with our family:
|A small part of the clan.|
|Jonah, Oliver and a lobster. Two boys fishing, Nova Scotia style|
Any of you who know Arch know he is much for sitting around and he was worried about what he was going to do all summer. And then, through the magic of Facebook we learned that Ambassatours - a Halifax based company who runs tours for visitors - was looking for tour bus drivers. He applied, got the job, underwent training to upgrade his licence and learn to drive the double decker antique tour buses:
|This bus is a training bus. He actually drives a pink bus|
|You will notice that they are right hand drive - quite a challenge at first.|
So he spent the last two months driving cruise ship visitors around Halifax on a pink hop on hop off tour bus. And having a grand time.
|Halifax is an old (for North America) city and the downtown streets are narrow and crowded|
and challenging to drive these big buses through.
And leave at sunset:
|Photo from Nova Scotia Web Cameras|
|Buses waiting for passengers from the ship|
|These folks are on such a ship and are waiting for the bus to transport them to the main cruise terminal.|
|Arch in his uniform. Note the Pebble Beach sweater - folks get a kick out of that|
This picture is a little blurry but I included it to give all you oldsters a bit of encouragement. The man with Arch in the Scottish kilt, et al is in his late 80s and comes to the port everyday that cruise ships are in town to play the bagpipes to greet the arriving passengers.
So to all you 50 and 60 somethings out there planning your retirement be sure to include the possibility of a job of some type. Hanging out around the house will get old very fast.
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