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Oh Canada and the East Coast

July 11, 2019

Painting by Nadine Belliveau

What an amazing coastline here in Nova Scotia. The entire east coast is lined with inlets and small rivers running anywhere from a few 100 metres to kilometres long fingers. Many of them provide safe anchorages especially those that reach far inland. The coast offers a myriad number of choices to explore but we have little time to dawdle.

The late start to summer with cold and damp weather combined with the non appearance of the much loved summer southwesters made us dawdle all along the eastern seabord.

Port Mouton Bay

Like the picture above we woke to damp cool mornings with limited visibility but we have kept plugging along making short hops then hunkering down, turning the heat on, making a hearty soup and hiding under blankets.

Liverpool – off in the distance another abandoned fish factory turned into a highly successful marijuana plantation.

There’s a mixture of names along the coast derived from both French and English. Whenever I go to pronounce the name of a town whch appears to have a french derivative I am corrected. So Port Mouton is not pronounced as the french spelling would infer but rather pronouced as Port Matoon. I can’t remember this most of the time when I’m telling someone the story of where we’ve been or where we have come from so have given up and call it Port Mutton!

Then there is the town of La Have and I always add an ‘r’ before the ‘e’! Um, somehow I have got to learn. Anyway it’s all very historical and lots of influences from the English and French settlers and then the Loyalists from south of the border and interestingly enough now the Syrians and other middle eastern nationalities that we hadn’t seen in Canada when we left 10 years ago.

For more information on the growth of the east coast read Annie Proulx’s novel Barkskins – a story spanning 300 years from the period of New France to our current period.

There are few cruising boats along this coastline. The exodus from the hurricane ravaged islands in the Caribbean usually comes to a stop around the Chesapeake. Those worried about insurance coverage, not us as we have none, are told they have to be north of 40 degrees during the hurricane season. That is also the belt at which temperatures start to drop below acceptable levels for those who have spent a long time in the tropics. The thought of coming further north horrifies them. So, the boats seen along this coast are mostly Norwegian (on their way home via Greenland and Iceland), the Brits who are used to damp cold temperatures, the odd American usually from the snowdrifts of Maine and New Hampshire and of course Canadians who live north of the Ice Wall. All hearty and prepared with heaters on board, heavy wool blankets, stout foul weather gear and lots of rum.

2 Comments leave one →
  1. Wayno permalink
    July 11, 2019 18:59

    Very good one mate! I’ve got that Annie Proulx book in fact. Stay warm and dry and send more please 🙂

  2. Judi K permalink
    July 12, 2019 00:18

    I remember reading about a couple that camped in their boat over winter in Nova Scotia. Of course the name eludes me….was a great rad though. Be thankful you can stay warm

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