Friday, August 7, 2015

Ferry Across the Gulf to the Mainland

When we crossed to Port Aux Basques Newfoundland, we were aboard the ferry MV Blue Puttees. This boat was named as a tribute to a regiment which represented Newfoundland in WW1. The group was known for their non standard leg gear "blue puttees" which they wore because there was a shortage of khaki on the island.

On our more lengthy overnight return voyage from the Avalon Peninsula to the mainland, we were on this boat, the MV Atlantic Vision. We had no idea what to expect but were pleasantly surprised.

We by no means expected to have a cabin of the quality of a cruise ship, but what we did receive was more than we anticipated, comfortable, and all we needed.

There were two comfortable beds, a bathroom with shower, desk, window and large screen tv...more than adequate for one night.

We went outside as the ferry began to move and we bid a fond farewell to beautiful Newfoundland.

 The scenery as we pulled away from the dock was not to be missed and never to be forgotten.

Before long we discovered a lovely restaurant onboard called Flowers. It served terrific meals complete with vegetables! We had missed vegetables. Not to be too critical of our previous week's food, but two vegetables which had often been served with our dinners were mashed potatoes and french fries.

The overnight transportation went smoothly and by the time we woke up, got assembled and had breakfast, it was time to disembark the ferry. Our large group got to head for the vehicle deck early in order to expedite movement prior to the exit.

On our return trip home, we stopped at several more places. I had never experienced Magnetic Hill and was glad to have the opportunity to go there. It was an unusual sensation to be sure, as our bus coasted what appeared to be uphill. There, I met and hugged my last New Brunswick lobster.

As we drove along the St. John river to Fredericton, I couldn't help but think and marvel about the many things I had seen and done in the last few weeks.

Fredericton too was a historical and scenic place in our only truly bilingual province of New Brunswick. After our tour, there seemed to be too little time in a city that I would have liked to enjoy further on my own. I won't share a lot of photos because most things can be found through google. I'll just add a few of my favourites.

Freddy, the little nude dude outside city hall
has historical significance and an interesting story.

Memoria Address a sculpture in granite
representative of the NB balsam fir.

We received much information about author's houses, however, one of greatest significance to me was this little building with the blue shutters. It was where Mary Grannan wrote the popular Maggie Muggins children's books. These stories were used as a basis for an early CBC tv series, one of the first tv programmes I remember watching as a young child. What a terrific and inspirational little house for writing.
As we continued west, the Hartland covered bridge was another of our many tourist stops. It boasts of being the longest covered bridge in the world at 1282 ft. Although the speed limit is posted at 10, the locals seem comfortable in using this as a drag strip to the other side of the river.
Our final night was spent back in Quebec where our group enjoyed a wonderful farewell steak dinner in Old Montreal prior to coming back to Ontario the next day.

Well, what can I say? It was a terrific journey....somewhere in the area of 6500 total km. I'm told.  I had no idea at the onset that I would see and do so much in a mere 17 days. I met wonderful people, saw and learned things I could have only dreamed about, and clearly, had much to share in my blog. If I had written about everything, I'd still be here a month from now and since I have tripadvisor reviews to complete, I'd better transfer my focus now.

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