Friday, September 6, 2019
At 9:30 the ferry docked in Nova Scotia and we lined up at the stairwell to head back to our vehicles. Turning one way on our deck, we didn’t find the truck and trailer, so we turned around and went to the other side. Once we found it, I was surprised how quickly we were off. Now, where were we going? Martha had entered Pictou Provincial park, but it took a little bit to find us. It was about a 4-hour drive, located near the ferry to Prince Edward Island.
Pulling into the campground, an RV pulling out waved to us, so I stopped and backed up. He said they were closing for the hurricane. Really! He was more worried about his house in Norfolk. “Norfolk, Virginia?” I asked. Small world once again.
We pulled up to the window, and sure enough, all provincial parks in Nova Scotia were closing. The storm wasn’t even coming until Saturday morning, if it comes at all. We pulled into a day use parking area, fixed lunch and explored our options. The weather report had the storm coming right over us with about 4 inches of rain and high winds.
We considered going 3 hours into New Brunswick, but the predictions were actually worse there, the eye of the storm being less damaging. We found Peaceful River Campground a bit inland, with hookups and an open field where trees might not be a problem. We drove 30 minutes, seemingly in the middle of nowhere to find the campground.
Don checked us in. His wife was in the hospital with a gall bladder infection. This is a seasonal campground where everyone knows everyone. They had all been calling him to move their furniture inside and close their awnings. He took us to the campsite and guided us in, then started talking to the neighbors. Of course it was all about the storm. I had taken what I thought was a map of the campground, which it was, but it listed all the names of the seasonal campers. Jim and Sandra were our neighbors, but they were preparing things here before returning home to do the same at home.
Don said, “Aw hurricanes never come here. They hit the Caledonia Mountain and turn out to sea.” We talked about where we had been and going to PEI after the storm. Martha said she wasn’t taking the ferry, as it might be too rough. Don said they often close the 10-mile bridge when the winds are high. Geez! I’d rather be on a ferry!
They told us about a cute little town, Tatamagouche, where nothing has changed for 40 years. Don said the population in summer was 5,000, but in winter 110. We decided to go check it out. I was on 1/8 of a tank of gas, so I stopped on the edge of town to fill it up. People were in line, but fortunately the diesel pump was open. In Newfoundland I had to use the pin number to pump gas, but here I didn’t.
People kept lining up as an attendant talked to a guy in front of us whose license read “volunteer firefighter”. He was also filling a plastic gas can. The attendant said the grocery store running out of everything. Really?
Driving by Foodland, the parking lot was full. The little town sits on Tatamagouche Bay on the north side of Nova Scotia and faces Northumberland Straight between PEI and Nova Scotia. The little main street was busy. A brewery was filled with people on the side deck with sample flights of beer. We went in and ordered a couple of porters, which were good.
There were several restaurants on the street. We opted for the Chowder House Cafe. It’s a small place and was pretty full. Three young ladies were busy filling orders, running back to the kitchen and taking payments. Martha ordered a mussel appetizer and a salad. I ordered halibut with mashed potatoes and mixed vegetables. The mussels had sriracha on them, which mad them a little hot. There were also strong onions. It was good, but kind of takes away from the mussel flavor. Other than that, everything was good.
I couldn’t help but wonder where these young ladies were from. There was Guatemalan coffee for sale in the corner, so maybe that was it. Wherever they were from, they were doing a great job.
On the way out of town we saw a sign for Creamery Street with an ice cream place on the corner. Ahhh, maybe tomorrow, if the hurricane doesn’t come. At the gas station, people were still lined up. Many were filling multiple portable gas tanks, probably for generators if the power goes out. I bet Martha a desert it would turn out to sea.