We made it to 200 days on the road! Everyone’s still talking to each other! We haven’t had any major accidents or injuries! Woohoo, thank you, God.
Left our campsite this morning, heading into Halifax. We had the road atlas, and another map from the campground. Somehow we were on a different highway than we thought and into Halifax before we thought we should be. So funny. For once we got lost going the right way. Not having the maps on our phones is aggravating.
It was 72, overcast, and a little humid. A nice change from the heat we’d been experiencing. To be wet and sticky all day is such an out of body experience. We get up, get dressed, and we’re wet. We go outside and we’re soaked. We get home and we change because after a day playing, we stink! Some of us even shower.
I hadn’t done a lot of research about Halifax, because I didn’t want to. (Ha, the beauty of the road. Do what you want when you want.) I had read there was a citadel, a cool public garden, and a waterfront shopping area that looked interesting. Other than that, we were just going to walk wherever.
We parked near the Citadel, and walked up to the top of the hill. Built in a star shape, all we could see were the outlines of the rock walls in the grass. We went to the entrance and found out there was a fee to get in, and then we voted not to go in. The guards probably thought we were crazy, but really, we’d just been to the citadel in Quebec City and we really didn’t need any more Canadian war history. Seeing one citadel was enough.
We scrambled down the steep street to the waterfront visitor center and found a decent map. There was a huge wave cement art piece with a sign in front stating to “keep off” that ten little kids were playing on and my family asked me not to.
The waterfront was bustling with tourists and locals. I counted 5 languages but lost count of the Indian saris. They were having a jazz festival like Montreal, but they added a huge sandbox for kids to play in. Good combination; everyone was happy. We didn’t linger though, because the waterfront was long and the only parking space we’d been able to find was a 2- hour one.
We played on a swing, took too many goofy pictures, and were sad to see that their immigration museum was closed. Evidently, thousands of immigrants came in to Halifax, just like Ellis Island. The area was popular with the Irish and Scottish. I wonder why my Dad’s ancestors came to America in 1623 instead of Halifax?
On the fast hike back to the car, I saw a large sign outside an old cemetery that said, “Why we aren’t Americans” and went on to proclaim their power, strength and fortitude in the War of 1812. Once again, it was almost belligerent in its wording, not just Canadian pride, but more vitriolic. We’d already learned all that history, from the July 25, 1814 battle on Lundy’s Hill in Niagara Falls, Canada, on through Fredericton, New Brunswick and I was started to get tired of it. A sign outside a cemetery? That somehow honors the dead? That makes “them” sound better than “us”? The war ended with the exact same boundaries. Why are they celebrating it? Once again, men went to war and died. It’s tragic. I realized as I walked away that I shouldn’t care so much – all the other people who walked by the sign ignored it!
We got back in the car in time to move it, and as we were driving to a park for a hike, we passed the garden I wanted to see and Dan was able to pull into a parking spot. The joys of the small tow vehicle, it goes anywhere. We had a relaxing picnic; great people watching, good food and a picturesque setting. As we walked around the garden afterward, enjoying and learning about their plants, I laughed when I told the kids that I was turning into my mom – we were always going to gardens for her, and I thought it was so boring. Now I’m making them do the same. Thanks, Mom!
We finally made it to Point Pleasant Park and had a fun time exploring the beach. There were many other people doing the same. The water was cold, but the tide was out, so we weren’t there to swim. The beachcombing was excellent – some of the best shells and marine life we’ve seen yet. On the hike back, I was weepy. We asked a young man to take a picture of us and I will cherish it forever. 200 days. On the road. Living in a luxury box on wheels. With two spoiled dogs, my favorite spousal unit and two precious human beings who just happen to be teenagers. It doesn’t get any better than that.