Sunday, September 1, 2019
Before leaving Frenchman’s Cove Provincial Park, we took a little walk over to the golf course that is such a big attraction here. This is a very nice park with a great staff, and now I see the biggest attraction – this very nice golf course.
Driving back up the Burin peninsula is so pretty, with its alpine lakes, hills, trees combined with open grasslands that appear to be manageable to travel by foot or horseback. It’s Labour Day weekend in Canada, so we saw cars parked along the highway, or by a bridge or gravel road. Some might be picking blackberries, some were likely fishing while some were 4-wheeling with their ATVs.
We pulled over next to a bridge and down a short gravel road beside a pretty stream. A big camper was parked there, but its truck was gone. We ate our lunch by that pretty stream. Surely there were fish if this guy camped here.
It was early afternoon when we pulled into Bellevue Beach Campground. We knew nothing about it, except it wasn’t a provincial park, our usual preference. Being a holiday weekend, it was packed. Every site was taken, and then there were visitors with extra cars and trucks. The sites weren’t well-marked, so I was stopped, looking to see if I was in the right place. A man jumped up and pointed, visually asking if this was our spot. I nodded, and he quickly moved his truck.
It was a tight fit. Kids were riding their bikes. People were walking down the gravel road, and Beatles music played from a boom box next to our site. I started to back in, but got out to see where two little kids were on my right front where the front of the truck will swing. They waved and then moved their bikes. The man who moved his truck came up asking if I would like some help. Yes I would, thank you. As I backed in, it looked like the right, front of the truck might clip a trailer parked across the driveway. I was in the spot, but crooked, crowding the site next to me. The guy with the truck suggested pulling forward across the drive. I did, but I told him I was worried about clipping the trailer. He stood on that corner, directing me until I was perfectly straight, then gave me the thumbs up. The owner of the trailer looked relieved.
The Beetles player site welcomed us, asking where we were from. Five of them were sitting in a circle, enjoying a perfect day at the beach, sipping beer and soaking up the sun. They were from St. John’s and came for the long weekend. Still hooked up, I glanced around at the rocky beach. People were swimming, walking the beach, while behind us a baseball game was going on in a nice, grassy field.
Finally, we got set up and took a walk up the beach, then up to a grassy area on the hill. Martha pointed out the whole field was wild strawberries. They are an early season berry and were no more. We saw that it was a natural barachois that probably was breached at high tide. To the north were big, dramatic cliffs. A day use area bordered this beach.
Back at our site, Martha went next door to ask about hiking trails and where the showers were. I was sitting inside and noticed the husband was packing up. He was the one who guided me into our site. “Was it something I said?” I asked through the screen. “No, it’s where you’re from”, he said with a smile. We talked through the screen for quite a while. They are from Cupid, next to Brigus, 50 minutes away, and were leaving to go see their children and grandchildren in Alberta in a few days. They planned to stay longer, but got to thinking about all the things they needed to do. He was recovering from esophageal cancer, and was doing well, but still didn’t have his energy. He talked about where we might go in our last few days here. They go to Venice, Florida in the winter, usually flying, but now considered driving down. They have a friend who goes to Bradenton Beach, where they also visit.
I gave him my card and told him to come see us in Charlottesville on his way down. Then he invited us in for a drink. They had just bought this 25’ trailer, and it was quite spacious inside with all kinds of storage. His wife Madeline had been giving Martha all the scoop on where to hike tomorrow. We had a nice, long visit. Funny how you just hit it off with people sometimes. Next door was quite a party. Paul said he couldn’t leave until they finished up. It was a group from nearby Dildo. They invited 25 friends with a big buffet dinner while their husbands played music. It made for nice background music. Finally, they finished playing, so we let Paul and Madeline get packed up.
We fixed a nice dinner backed right up to the beach, watching everyone enjoying the holiday weekend.