susys running away to sea

"The rigors (sic) of an expeditionary lifestyle"

Monday, July 17, 2006

I love to go a-wandering ...

Monday 17 July - vile weather all night - J woke up, said he din't want to leave and went back to bed. Can't say I blame him.

So, with sailing off, off, I decided to go for a walk - there is a round-the-island trail. Wearing fleece and foulie jacket, I set off up the road, passing the whale windvane on a house belonging to people from Rhode Island - I feel very local knowing this. Then up a boardwalk to Hancock's Head - a false alarm, the real trail was over there and after floundering around the boggy bits and falling into overgrown empty space, I staggered over to the real RTI trail a couple of hundred metres away. Then it's off, on the genuine boardwalk, to the tune of Lili Marlene.

Stunning scenery - took a photo. Another few yards - moe stunning scenery - took another phot. In fact, the whole walk was breathtakingly amazing - gave up taking photos and just soaked it up. Unlike most of the places we've seen and been to, this island isn't smothered in stunted pines. It's moorland and heathland, peat bog and march and rocks, and all the way the sea breaks over the glaciated boulders that are the shoreline.

No geologist, me, but the rocks in the peat seem to a white limestone type, glinting with quartz shards, while the shore is pinky red granite type, moulded and worn smooth by thousands of years of ice, wind and water abrasion.

The path is boarded, or pebbled, or a peat track, over the low undulating landscape. There are benches and gazebos at intervals, some dedicated to the memory of people lost at sea.

Little brown birds chat their beaks angrily as I pass, disturbing their solitude. I try and make a list of the plants - pitcher plant, low growing rhododendrons, purple vetch, red & white clovers, ferns in the bogs, and I think (told later) the local speciality, bakeapples - a small reddish berry. Later, on the more sheltered side of the island is a small area of scented pines, and hidden among them, a dunny. I took a photo.

Halfway along (total five miles) the sun came out, and with a convenient piece of found rope, I tied jacket and fleece together (reef knot), slung them over my shoulder, and tied the rope round my waist (overhand knot). So, hands-free and striding out!

Passing the causeway, I reached the main road, where a total of 2 cars - traffic! - passed me on the way back to Greenspond. I bought apples and Coors Light (breakfast) at the store. I asked the lady there to take a photo of the Happy Wanderer, but she looked somewhat bemused, so I passed on that, and took one of her instead.

Back at the boat, J looking fed up - it's the weather - he was expecting it to be better and suggested we miss out most of the rest and rush to Bras d'Or (Br'ddore) Lakes on Nova Scotia. Having no expectations either way about the weather, I'm not fussed where we go, but did say I wanted to see L'Anse aux Meadows (Viking settlement) and Labrador (to say I've been there).


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