Oct 072008

We are back from a weekend trip to Canada, more specifically, Nova Scotia, Canada. It’s true that Canada is a whole other country. The people there are some of the friendliest folk you’ll ever meet. The land is gorgeous, yet the weather is cold. The fall foliage was starting to show reds, yellows, oranges, and purples. We made the trip up to Big Pond, CA (pop. 47) by flying into Halifax and driving the 4 hours to Cape Breton, the northeastern tip of Nova Scotia.

The wedding was a lot of fun. We started out knowing a couple people there, and ended up knowing practically everyone. About 100-120 people were there to celebrate the wedding of Mike and Megan in the Celtic style. The ceremony music was of course by bagpipe, and the reception music was played by an amazing fiddle player accompanied by a keyboard. After a filling dinner, we were all told to move the tables and chairs out of the way because it was time to square dance! I’m not talking about your typical swing-yer-partner-round-and-round country square dance. The Celtic style of square dancing was free form consisting of 3 sets. At least one person needs to know what’s going on and they can tell everyone in the circle how to spin until dizzy, trade partners, join hands, and have the time of your lives. We watched a couple rounds before we were pulled into the fun. At first it was hilarious as we figured out how to follow the moves, but soon even we were helping the newcomers dance. The dancing left us hot, sweaty, out of breath, but also laughing. After a set, everyone would step out into the 45-degree windy weather outside to cool off before starting again.

After the wedding, Mark and I took a drive around the historic Cabot Trail (185-mile loop covering many small towns and the Cape Breton Highlands National Park). We spent 2 days on the trail searching for moose, admiring the fall colors, bundling up against the cold wind off the ocean, and doing a few hikes. Unfortunately the area was closing down for the season, but that really just meant that we had more of the drive to ourselves. We finally did see a moose swimming across a lake pretty far away from us. The bed and breakfast we stayed at along the way was very homey, and we were able to get some decent pictures in along the way. It was a fast trip, but a fun trip and we aren’t quite ready to get back to our normal lives.

I’ve attached some pictures below for your enjoyment. Included is the giant Ceilidh Fiddle in Sydney. A small creek along a hiking trail. A moose swimming in Lake Warren. Mark and Joanna at Beulach Ban Falls. And finally Mark and Joanna freezing on the Skyline boardwalk overlooking the ocean. (If you can’t see the pictures, be sure to visit http://markandjoannatravel.blogspot.com/ )

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