Thursday, August 27, 2015
Thursday was the first day of my duties at Radford. I had to attend the College meeting, then the department meeting, then the personnel meeting. I was pretty tired since I didn’t sleep well last night and it was very hard to get up. I drove in around 8, got a Starbucks coffee and made it through the meetings. I packed up the stuff in the refrigerator and then got some ice and a sandwich at Jimmy John’s. I was going to go straight home for a nap but I felt better after the sandwich and decided to go for a bike ride on the Huckleberry. I rode for over 50 minutes then headed home and dropped off for a very deep nap. It was hard to wake up but I finally did, had a cup of coffee, practiced the piano, finished my weights and yoga, then took a hike down to the gate twice. I have planted my first three trays and I watered them twice today. At about 7 I drove into town and did my second bike ride around the tech campus. I wanted to go to a movie tonight but none interested me so I am just going to go home when I finish my blog. I did get a phone message from Kelly and e-mailed her back. I hope I don’t get hurt again but I do want her to know I am still there for her. I also responded to Darya’s e-mail and I will be sending her the Writing Poems book.
Tuesday, August 25, 2015
Tuesday started out very well, with my first hike since I returned on Sunday. I pruned the road some and went up three times to the orchard. I still have some pruning to do but not much. I may have to cut down the infected fruit tree so it doesn’t get the others sick. When I got back from my hike I planted three containers with lettuce and set up the watering system again. I did another laundry, did my weights and yoga, practiced the piano, and washed the dishes. I also put the new sheet and pillowcases in the truck and organized the crates better. I drove into town around 2 and had a nice bike ride on the Huckleberry for over 50 minutes. Then I drove to East Coasters and left my bike to be worked on, the chain needing tightening. I had some food over at Our Daily Bread then took a nap. I had East Coasters order my bike seat since I was having problems with the website. I then decided to drive out to Walker to fish but Rob called and I decided to go back and walk with him again. We had a fine walk and then I went to VT to do my second long bike ride. Good day.
Monday, August 24, 2015
I got in last night around 10:30 and there was a 5 inch thick tree down that would have required me to get the chain saw out and that seemed too much so I just walked up and settled in, watching some TV and doing my weights and yoga. It was great to be home. I got up early and went to do the grass before all the bugs came out and it got too hot. The mowing went well and it didn’t take me much longer than usual. Next I unloaded the truck and got the kayak out and opened up at the cabin. Then I finished up with the truck, started a wash and fixed things around the house. I got things in pretty good shape and then did my yoga and weights. It was time to drive into town and play golf (which I did very well, 46 for nine) and then head to my office to take care of the Digital Measures stuff (Rosemary still wanted me to print out my FAR, even though that wasn’t supposed to be my responsibility). I got that done with help from Nancy Taylor and then called Rob and he was ready to go for a hike and we had a nice chat. I think things with Noah will get better; at least I hope so. Then it was time for my bike ride, for over an hour on the Tech Campus (it was much harder with all the students back). Now I am working at Starbucks and then it will be home by 11 or so. Claire e-mailed me and I hope to see her Wednesday.
Sunday, August 23, 2015
I got up pretty early and I decided to go ride my bike for 50 minutes and then do my weights and yoga out in the driveway. That worked perfectly and I was able to say goodbye to Laura and Andrew and Sylvia and head off at 8:30. The drive was no fun and it was much slower than expected and it was clear I wasn’t going to make Jenny’s in the evening unless I drove straight there with no nap, no second bike ride, no golf and no watching Tiger on TV. I certainly didn’t want to do that so I called Jenny and arranged to see her tomorrow morning. This gave me time to play nine holes at the Pendleton Golf Course (and to watch Tiger’s last 4 holes), and make it to William and Mary for a 50 minute bike ride with my lights on. I ate at the Applebees and then showered and fell into a solid sleep. Today should be the last day of my trip so I was feeling both excited and a little frustrated that I still had to drive to Virginia Beach. That was an hour there and one back and I couldn’t stay that long, but I knew it was best to visit. Jenny asked that I come at 10:30 so that gave me time for a 45 minute bike ride in large adjoining parking lots in Virginia Beach. When I got there I could see that Oliver was a lot of work. Paloma was glad to see me and we all went for a swim in Jenny’s parents’ lovely pool. Then it was time to start back, just a little past noon. I ran into traffic by the 64 tunnel and all the way up to Charlottesville there were many instances of rubber necking. Just heading up Afton Mountain, 64 West was closed so I was stuck there for almost a half hour. I knew I needed a bike break so at the Cyrus McCormack farm I exited and rode for 40 minutes. Then it was drive on although I could tell I was getting tired so I decided to stop at the Applebees at exit 137 and have a bite to eat and do my internet stuff. My trip should end by 10 or so tonight.
Saturday, August 22, 2015
Fortunately, today was much easier weather wise and after a 50 minute bike ride at Willowbrook park and some weights in yoga in my room, a quick nap set me up to get ready to head to the city. I got the 1:30 ferry so I was in the city at 1:55, meaning that I had 20 minutes to walk so I heading up past the heliport and back to catch the R. I got to Gabe’s house right about 3:30 and Julian was waiting for me and off we went to the playground where he had a good time climbing things and riding his scooter with a kid he met. I was able to sit quite a bit and I did end up playing a bit with an 8 year old who was fighting with his mother and I made up a game for him which he very much liked. Then it was time to head home and dinner was fabulous. Francesca made a wonderful salad topped with marinated pork that was unbelievable, one of the best salads I ever ate, and then there was some terrific pizza, like nothing you get in Virginia. There was some good conversation but I was really tired so I went to bed at 10:30 and didn’t sleep well. When I got up Julian was ready to go with his babysitter Cassie and I went for breakfast and coffee nearby. I didn’t walk around since I wanted to safe my legs for Julian’s adventure and I am glad I did. He got back around 2 and by 2:10 we were off for the x27 bus stop. Unfortunately, the express bus didn’t come till 3 so we had an ice cream when the Mister Softee truck pulled up (and Jules covered himself in ice cream, which I washed off most of at the fountain in the playground across the street) and Julian played some on the monkey bars. We made it into Manhattan in about 40 minutes and got off at 23rd street, the northern terminus. I offered Julian a trip to the top of the Freedom tower (which is not open) and a cruise around Manhattan but he wanted to go to the Children’s museum up on 83rd. It wasn’t too impressive but Julian had fun and when it closed at 5, he wanted to go the Grand Central Station where he wanted me to buy him a present. The toy store there was fun and I bought him a city bus that he didn’t have. He wanted to see the Metro North trains so we walked out on the platform and got on one so he could see inside. Jules was a bit worried that the train would start off, but I told him, if it did we would just go to the first stop and come right back. After we got off I asked the conductor where the first stop was and when he said Cortland, NY, I realized I almost made a big mistake. Julian was now hungry so we had dinner at Cipriano’s in GCS. I had a good tortellini dish with a side salad, and Julian had pasta with butter and some good bread. I checked the express bus schedule and found that the last express but was at 7:06 so we were going to have to get over to 41st and Fifth pretty fast after dinner. We made the 6:51 bus and when we got to Bay Ridge, Julian wanted to go to the playground, even though it was close to getting dark. I called Gabe and he said no, that Julian had to come home and that’s where we went. He didn’t want to go to bed so I played one game of chutes and ladders with him but that didn’t help much. After Francesca put him to bed, Gabe and I had a nice chat and then it was time for bed, pretty exhausted but pretty satisfied. I decided to leave at 8:30 so I would have time to ride my bike, do my weights and yoga and take a nap and that plan worked well. I got to the Hampton Inn by 11 and ended up taking a nice ride at the Rutgers University Farm, then weights and yoga and then a good nap. I got to Andrew’s right on time and Laura was very excited to see me and we went for a swim almost right away. The pool was wonderful and we played all sorts of games and then we went for a short bike ride and played on the swings. What a smart and interesting 10 year old. First Julian, who is already an interesting child, and then Laura, who really is exceptional. It was also fun to see Andrew and Sylvia and Andrew prepared an excellent dish of salmon and rice and we chatted long into the evening. I got up pretty early and I decided to go ride my bike for 50 minutes and then do my weights and yoga out in the driveway. That worked perfectly and I was able to say goodbye to Laura and Andrew and Sylvia and head off at 8:30. The drive was no fun and it was much slower than expected and it was clear I wasn’t going to make Jenny’s in the evening unless I drove straight there with no nap, no second bike ride, no golf and no watching Tiger on TV. I certainly didn’t want to do that so I called Jenny and arranged to see her tomorrow morning. This gave me time to play nine holes at the Pendleton Golf Course (and to watch Tiger’s last 4 holes), and make it to William and Mary for a 50 minute bike ride with my lights on.
Wednesday, August 19, 2015
I was going to drive north and connect with 95 once I crossed the border but my GPS, finally working, told me that taking 1 through St. John’s made more sense and it did. I fumbled my way downtown and ended up right by the water at the place where they do concerts. The only problem was that it was pretty foggy but that really didn’t bother me. I found the bike path which I had ridden on before and had a lovely long ride with the sun clearing things somewhat. After that I decided to head for the border and though I was tired I wanted to make it before I napped. The border crossing was easy and I bought some wild blueberries which were quite good. It was time for a nap and then I was hoping to find a golf course but I didn’t until I was less than 25 miles from bangor. Sawmill woods was advertised as a 9 hole par 36 course and thought I was a bit skeptical, it turned out to be a fine course, most holes from the red being about 300 yards and some quite tight. I played rather well and shot a 48, marred by one eight on a hole that my long putt took a remarkable bounce the wrong way and ended up 30 feet away, which I proceeded to three putt. I found a campground about 6 miles from bangor, checked and then drove into town for my second bike ride on the Eastern Maine Community College campus. It did have a residence hall which somewhat surprised me. After my ride I found a shady spot and did my weights and yoga, then headed to the nearby movie theater where I found out that “The Man from UNCLE” was playing at 7:30 which gave me time to head for an appetizer at Chili’s, watch the final 5 holes of the pga championship and do my lumosity training. I was a little bit worried about the mosquitos when I got back to the campsite but they were not a problem and I slept well, waking around 6:00 wanting to get going right away since I knew I had 450 miles to drive. Getting going at 6:30 always make the day easier and I had almost two hundred miles before I stopped for a nap and then my first ride, a 50 minute push at Merrimack College, a Christian school with a very nice campus. After that it was time to drive again and I must say that since I left Bangor, traffic was pretty heavy and even heavier as I got close to the beaches. I had to be very focused since people cut right in front of me and everyone was going too fast. But I drove safely, wasting a half hour in traffic because of a big accident, and finally stopped again at exit 32, Queen Street south of Harford, a favored pit stop in the past. I ate a light meal (no carbs) and then took another nap and then it was the second bike ride, this time just over 35 minutes. Traffic had eased up and at almost 7 I headed out with a plan to get to the KOA in Newberg. However, as I neared the Taconic I pulled off and found a nearby state park that charged 15 (it turned out to be 22) which was almost 30 dollars less than the KOA. I got there at late dusk and just as the dark took hold, I reached Cold Spring and the American Grill where I had a fine sashimi tuna salad. I am glad I am going to have an extra day by myself in NYC. I love to walk around by myself, wandering wherever (although I often walk from the SI Ferry up to the Freedom Tower, around Greenwich Village, Chinatown, Little Italy, across the Brooklyn Bridge, Central Park and Times Square). I woke up to the big push to Staten Island. The drive was intense but not too difficult and I even improvised a bit on the way down, moving from the Taconic to my favored Saw Mill and then over to 87 before the Cross County. There was a few minutes traffic getting on the GW bridge but it wasn’t too long before I was getting off the Jersey turnpike and entering Staten Island. I went to ride my bike at Willowbrook park and then visited my parents’ grave. Now it was time to check in at the Hampton and then take a nap. I did my weights and yoga, and drove to the Ferry. It was very hot so walking up to the Freedom Tower was slow with several stops. After visiting the two memorial pools, I walked up through Tribeca and then over to the Barnes and Noble at Warren Street where I bought Under the Volcano. Now I took the train up to Central Park and rented a bike and rode around the whole park. I didn’t realize there was a big hill at the northern end and also a large swimming pool which looked very enticing. After that it was time to have dinner, this time at an excellent sushi place at 6 Columbus Circle. Now it was time to walk down to Times Square and I was pretty much done when I got there so I sat for a few minutes, took the 1 down to the ferry and got home by 10:30 for some TV.
Sunday, August 16, 2015
I was going to drive north and connect with 95 once I crossed the border but my GPS, finally working, told me that taking 1 through St. John’s made more sense and it did. I fumbled my way downtown and ended up right by the water at the place where they do concerts. The only problem was that it was pretty foggy but that really didn’t bother me. I found the bike path which I had ridden on before and had a lovely long ride with the sun clearing things somewhat. After that I decided to head for the border and though I was tired I wanted to make it before I napped. The border crossing was easy and I bought some wild blueberries which were quite good. It was time for a nap and then I was hoping to find a golf course but I didn’t until I was less than 25 miles from bangor. Sawmill woods was advertised as a 9 hole par 36 course and thought I was a bit skeptical, it turned out to be a fine course, most holes from the red being about 300 yards and some quite tight. I played rather well and shot a 48, marred by one eight on a hole that my long putt took a remarkable bounce the wrong way and ended up 30 feet away, which I proceeded to three putt. I found a campground about 6 miles from bangor, checked and then drove into town for my second bike ride on the Eastern Maine Community College campus. It did have a residence hall which somewhat surprised me. After my ride I found a shady spot and did my weights and yoga, then headed to the nearby movie theater where I found out that “The Man from UNCLE” was playing at 7:30 which gave me time to head for an appetizer at Chili’s, watch the final 5 holes of the pga championship and do my lumosity training.
Saturday, August 15, 2015
Saturday was going to be a drive day and driving through Cape Breton National Park made it a slower drive to start. I ended up stopping at Pleasant Bay to ride my bike around the harbor (Tracy and I had kayaked here) and then it was on to the spectacular coast near Cheticamp. I took a lot of pictures and will send some out to friends later. I had a lobster salad lunch in Cheticamp along with some seafood chowder and then it was time to drive, at least until it was nap time. My gps wasn’t working but I used my map figure out where I was and ended up at the Canso Causeway, then drove on to Truro and then Amherst. I stopped in Antigonish for a couple slices of pizza with “The Works” (regretting it almost immediately since I had pizza yesterday) but now I wasn’t hungry and I found a road just outside of Truro where I rode my bike for another 50 minutes. I got a text from Darya and they were not going to be in Amherst but I called and told her about my experience with the tidal bore (which was indeed boring since it was about 6 inches high). Laura texted me about my visit and I sent her back a picture from the Highlands. She is very excited to see me and though I am ready to get home, I will go visit her. Gabes left me a message and Wednesday and Thursday will work fine and Julian is also very excited to see me. Then I promised Jenny I would come to Virginia Beach to see her and Oliver, her baby son and her daughter Paloma, who I haven’t seen for several years but may remember me. She was a lot a fun when I saw her last in Oregon. I made it to Amherst and luckily found a campground immediately. I checked in and then drove into downtown Amherst which was not impressive at all. I did a little shopping (bananas and water) and now am going to have a meatless salad at Pizza Delight and then head to Tim Horton’s to check my e-mail, and do my lumosity training.
Friday, August 14, 2015
Thursday started okay, with coffee at Tim Horton’s and another 50 minute bike ride at Memorial University. Then I went back to the campground, showered and started for the ferry. After a half hour it started to rain and that made things a lot more difficult. I got off the Trans Canadian and started for the ferry but pulled over to nap. Then I went into Placentia for lunch and then to the ferry terminal where I was able to ride my bike for 35 minutes before it was time to board. My room was small but very comfortable (the boat is pretty new and more a cruise ship than just a ferry) and did some cleaning up of my gear and my weights and yoga. I walked around some, watched the last 45 minutes of Wreck It Ralph, walked around some more then watched a half hour of Interstellar. The ferry got in around 9 am and I started my drive to Cape Breton. I stopped at the turnoff to the Englishtown ferry and rode my bike for 50 minutes, then stopped at a café for a sandwich and whom do I see but Darya and her boyfriend. They said they had seen me biking and were very surprised to see me as I was them. We talked about perhaps meeting in Cheticamp for dinner but things unfolded differently for all of us. When I finally got into Ingonish, the fellow at the Highlands Golf Course (an expensive course and only 18 holes available) told me he could get me on at 3:10 if I wanted to play by myself and that it would cost 90 dollars. I took the tee time, took a quick nap and then headed for the main street café for coffee and strawberry shortcake. The café had internet so I checked out the course in Cheticamp and it was basically the same price so I figured I would treat myself and probably just play 14 holes. I got there, paid up and then met the couple ahead of me after the first hole and they offered to let me join them and I did. Eric and Susan were a lot of fun and I played well for 14 holes and then lost it for the last 4. It still was a lot of fun. It was after 7 and I still didn’t have a campground, but just after I left the golf course, there was the Ingonish National Park campground and they had plenty of space. I rode my bike for 30 minutes then headed to Andrew’s pizza where I answered my phone messages and found out that Laura was expecting me today (I texted her back and the 21st will work) and also talked to Darya about meeting tomorrow perhaps (they went to Meat Cove and were going to go kayaking in the morning). Interesting day.
Wednesday, August 12, 2015
Tuesday broke with sunshine and a desire to do things, almost confusing at points. I went and had my coffee and breakfast sandwich, checked my e-mail and then headed to town. I stopped at Bannerman park to ride my bike for 50 minutes and then headed up to Signal Hill for a walk and some pictures of the beautiful harbor. Heading back I stopped in town and went walking along the harbor and along water street. It was perfect. I stopped for a vegie burger and salad at Jack Astor’s overlooking the harbor. Then it was more walking and then back to the campground. I wanted to play golf and instead of driving 40 minutes outside of town, I decided to play at Pippy Park even though it would be with other players. The 27 hole course was packed but when I got to the first tee, I could have played by myself but I asked the 2 fellows in front of me if I could join them. Bret and Paul were salemen for heavy equipment accessories and they were very pleasant. Paul hit a drive almost 280 and I, after opening with 2 6s, ended up shooting a 44, the key moment when I putted in from off the green from 40 feet, giving me a birdie. Then it was back for a nap, weights and yoga, another bike ride (this time on the main Memorial University campus, a very good place to ride. After that it was time to head into town for dinner and I luckily parked right near Oliver’s the place bret and paul recommended. The dinner was superb, fresh local cod with blueberry sauce, steamed mussels in a yummy coconut sauce, two lobster claws which the terrific waiter (to whom I gave a 40% tip) substituted for the scallops that were supposed to come with the meal. It was one of my best meals ever, and after it I decided to take a short walk down water feeling pretty good about things. Wednesday was supposed to be rainy but when I awoke past 8 (I had to take a sleep aid) it was sunny so I decided it would be another do things day. The showers had just been cleaned so I got a good hot shower in and then headed over to Tim Horton’s to do my Lumosity training and the blog. Then it was time for a 50 minute bike ride at Memorial University, then a ride to Cape Spear, where the wind and the fog were a bit much, then back to town for Quidi Vidi but the street had a Pakistani restaurant and a grocery where I got a mediocre sandwich. I went back to Tim Horton’s but now my computer wouldn’t allow me to get any e-mail so that was a real problem since my phone wasn’t getting them. I tried to call but that went nowhere, so I decide to head off and do my second bike ride and then go into the public library at Memorial and see if I could fix things. The bike needs some work on the chain and Ian at East Coasters explained how to fix it, but it will be a little complicated so I decided to wait till I really need it. The visit to the library was a failure, but I did leave a message at the help desk and when I got up from my nap and did my yoga and weights, I tried to fix it but the internet at the campground wasn’t the best so it didn’t work. This was giving me a bad feeling but I decided that I should go back to Fog City for dinner because I knew their internet worked. That was a good move because I was able to change the password and get my e-mail back. I changed the password on the phone but it is still not working but that is not too big a problem.
Tuesday, August 11, 2015
Monday was a very hard driving day. There was a lot of heavy rain and wind and I gave thought to stopping early and getting a room many times. I stopped several times just to get off the road and finally I stopped at a catholic elementary school when the sky cleared a little and hoped to get 5 minutes of riding in, but I was able to get a full 50 in riding around the school parking lot at least 50 times. I was very grateful for that. The weather was a little better now so I decided to try to get close to St. John’s and maybe even head into town for dinner. I stopped at an awful campground that scared me off when the proprietor came to the door in an undershirt and the place looked like one’s worse nightmare of a trailer park. I drove away quickly, and stopped to use my GPS to locate a campground even closer to town at Pippy Park. It was only a few miles from downtown and it was clean and pleasant. I checked in and then went to the Avalon Mall for a very late lunch. There was a movie theater there and that seemed promising for later. I then went bike riding over at the nearby college, took a nap and then returned to the mall for coffee and a brownie at Starbucks. I checked the movies out and the Mission Impossible movie was showing on Imax at 7:30 so that gave me time for a little walk, a salad and vegetable stir fry at Fog City, and then a very entertaining movie. I was tired but when I got back to my campground I did my weights and yoga. Not a terrible day overall.
Monday, August 10, 2015
This morning I got up around 8, obviously needing the sleep. It was sunny (it was supposed to be raining) so I was indecisive about what exactly to do. I was still thinking about Twillingate but when I called the woman said there were no icebergs left so it would be a whale tour exclusively. That made my decision harder but when I got to 340 I thought it best to go to Twillingate, a lovely coastal town, and get a boat tour in since the weather was so nice. I stopped at Boyd’s cove to bike ride for 50 minutes and it was a pretty ride along the cove. Then it was off to Twillingate for the whale watching. We spotted one male humpback and that was good enough for me, just to see the 40 foot creature for an hour. We also saw cod chasing capelin to the surface and that the captain said was very unusual to see. I met a couple from Montreal and the woman, Darya, and I had a pretty intense conversation about spirituality (I am spiritually impaired as I told her) education, and writing. She is supposed to send me some poems. I really enjoyed meeting her because she is clearly a seeker, and I felt a little bad that I am so complacent. On the drive back I was indecisive again, mainly because I couldn’t get my phone to work but just as I got into Gander, I was able to call the golf course, and though it was after 6, they were going to be open till 9 so I could get nine holes in. Now I had purpose and started playing a very nice course but realized I should try to get a campsite so I called Jonathan’s Pond Campground and made a reservation. Now I focused on golf and it was a decent course but the front 9 had 4 par 5s and 3 par 3s so I ended up playing the last hole, the fourth par 5 as a 270 yard par 4. I ended up with a 49. After finishing I decided to drive to the campground and pay so I could stay in town as long as I liked, but I got misled by my GPS and I ended up wasting 20 minutes. Once there I treated my ear and then did my yoga and weights (which I had skipped yesterday) and then went for a 25 minute bike ride. Now I headed into town for dinner and luckily there was a Chinese restaurant open till nine (it was 8:45) and I got there and had a fine dinner and an entertaining conversation with the owner’s 6 year old son, who was very friendly and very bright. I then went to Tim Horton’s but I just read the news since I was too tired to do any work. An indecisive but productive and ultimately rewarding day.
Saturday, August 8, 2015
When I got up, I decided to try to get the first ferry at 10:30, so I drove to Forteau and set up the ice cream for the two ladies at Coastal Motors, then drove to Blanc Sablon and arrived at 8:25. There were more people on line than I expected so I figured that I would probably get the 3:30 boat. At 8:30 the ferry opened and I got number 20 and for the next two and a half hours I waited to see if I would get on the early boat. There got up to number 17 before putting things on hold, but they said there was still a chance that I would get on so I stayed and finally, they issued me a ticket and said to drive down to the dock even though my place was still not guaranteed. Number 19 hadn’t shown up so there I was looking at at least two open spots but not on the boat yet. A minute later they put me on first and it was so close I had to take the bike and bike rack off. The voyage was in almost complete fog but I was excited to get to NF and the first thing I did was ride my bike for 50 minutes on a side road a few miles from the ferry. I kept driving and was hoping to play golf at Cow Head when I passed Doctor’s river and my plans immediately changed. What a lovely small river! I got in my waders and off I went, catching two brookies before I saw that there was a fellow fishing about 100 yards ahead of me. I didn’t understand how he got ahead of me (he was actually coming back down) but when I reached him, we had a nice chat and he told me he had caught 100 trout. Impressive. I was a little disheartened since he must have caught almost every fish in the river but the cascades were so tempting, I decided to fish and I ended up catching nine, not bad in a previously fished river. I decided to stop in Port au Choix and found a campground there and rode my bike for 35 minutes then had a good dinner of local shrimp and scallops. In the morning, I decided to head to Cow Head and try to play golf. Try is the key word. It was about 8:30 when I started and the greens were wet, bumpy and slow. The fairways were very slow and wet so a good drive only went a few more yards. I ended up with a 50 or a 51, but it was long even from the red tees and it took me five shots to get to the par five greens. After that I asked if I could ride my bike on the cart path and they said fine since there was no one on the course. I rode for 50 minutes and then it was time to head to Rocky Harbour in Gros Morne National Park. I drove in at about 11:45 and had a nice lunch of cod au gratin and fish chowder at the Fisherman’s Landing. After that I decided to drive toward Norris Point and as I got to the harbor, a tour boat was just about to leave so I jumped out and asked if I could still get on and the mate said yes. I bought my ticket and had a wonderful tour of Bonne Bay. Gros Morne mountain in the distance was quite imposing and the little towns we passed were very picturesque and the tour guide’s historical notes were rather interesting. I then was going to explore some more but instead I stopped at a picnic site and did my weights and yoga. After that back to the Gros Morne RV park and some more biking, then some piano practice (the second time this trip). As the sun was setting I took a walk out by the wharf and it was quite pleasant. Now it was back to the Fisherman’s Landing for some chowder and coffee and some work and later the lobster dinner I was hoping for all day. I walked a little on the sidewalk along the harbor and then back to my campsite for a decent night’s sleep. I awoke at 6:30 and by 6:45 I was on the road. I decided not to go out to the Tablelands (the bare red flattish mountain) and instead drove on until I found a decent place to ride my bike out by a lake. I was tempted to fish since there were so many places where I could cast easily, but I saw no one else fishing so I passed on it. I was going to keep driving for a while but I found a lovely little stream that looked full of trout. It was amazing but I only got 8 fish, and I think someone must have fished it earlier. After about a half hour I slipped and fell in, but that didn’t bother me too much (it was warm and not too breezy) so I kept fishing. All my clothes were drenched and I discovered that my camper top had spread out again so I would need too really fix it this time, drilling holes and putting in screws. I drove some, got a sandwich and decided to take a nap. I pulled over at a large pullout and moved all the stuff into the front. Then I climbed in with my stomach feeling a little odd. In five minutes it was an emergency as I had to go to the bathroom again and again and I was dizzy and almost passed out several times. Finally I got back in and fell asleep for a while and when I awoke, I felt okay. I thought I had food poisoning and I wasn’t sure how long I would be okay so I moved the stuff into the back and drove to Grand Falls. I was going to get a room near the hospital (I vividly remember the awful night in the emergency room in Texas) but when I got close to town I was still feeling okay so I thought I might get a campsite after all. I couldn’t find one so I stopped at a hotel just off the highway but they were full . The front desk woman was very kind and let me use the laundry facilities and during that time I rode my bike (still a slight bit queasy). I also found a campsite nearby and talked to the fellow there and he said it was fine to come after I finished the laundry. I fixed the camper back with screws and when the dryer needed another round, I had soup and salad at the hotel’s restaurant and then collected my laundry and headed off to the Beothunk campground. I checked in and decided to head to Tim Horton’s for tea and dessert and take a shower later.
Wednesday, August 5, 2015
I am in L’anse au Loup at Fast Freddy’s, the only restaurant in town, and I just had a piece of very decent carrot cake with a cup of tea. I drove in a very relaxed manner, stopping for a bike ride on a flat area on the road to St. Lewis, driving around red bay, and eventually getting into town about 3. I drove over to the next town, hoping to get an oil change at Fonteau Motors and I got that and a lot more. The two women there, especially Laura Prosper, were very sweet and helped me print out an email, and then fax it to Suburban Propane so I could get the Early Buy rate, which will save me over 500 dollars. The dead line was Friday so I just made it. They also called the ferry people but it would have been hard to get on any of tomorrow’s ferries so I decided just to wait for my scheduled time on Friday morning. After another bike ride along the pretty shore, I had an early dinner at Fast Freddy’s of local fish (in a fish and chips). Then I drove back toward the Pinware for 5 miles and found a small stream backed up by a beaver dam and cast some lures in from the top of the culvert. I got one hit on the wooly bugger but no fish. The bugs were wild so I quit after 20 minutes.
Tuesday, August 4, 2015
I slept pretty well and I wasn’t on the road until after 7 and the weather was threatening all day. Despite that I was able to fly fish middle brook with my mosquito jacket sprayed with bug spray and catch 11 trout on Royal Wulffs and nymphs. I also got a 40 minute bike ride in (and got pretty drenched) and finally got into Happy Valley and went to the closest Laundromat and did my clothes. I decided to get a room at the Royal Inn since there didn’t seem to be a campground and I wasn’t sure where I could stay. The room was fine and after checking in I decided to head to the dock area, where the Happy Dragon, a medium sized freighter, was unloading with its own “Big Lift” cranes. I rode my bike for 50 minutes than chatted with the ticket agent at the ferry office about the trip to Nain, which takes 5 days roundtrip and which, he said, quite a few people take. After that I went and showered and headed to the Jungle Jim restaurant, where I ate the Bahama Mama, which was stir fried chicken and vegetables with basmati rice, always a treat. Then it was back to the room for TV in English, a real treat. In the morning I got going early because I knew I had a long ride ahead (I figured that the dirt roads would end when I got to the junction for Cartwright) and it was indeed, 40 mph on poorly maintained dirt roads and 25 in the construction areas. I did stop to ride my bike and to fish at a long pool and caught 16 brookies. The drive was tough but I really wanted to see Cartwright so I drove the 50 plus miles to find a poor town with a little fishing industry and not much else. I rode my bike around the wharf area for a half hour and then ate an early dinner at the pub at the Northern Lights Inn. It was a Caesar salad and a hot beef sandwich, drenched in gravy. I needed something hot and it was adequate. I now had to drive to Port Hope Simpson and that was a very long drive, over 120 miles on difficult roads. I had hoped to get there by 8:30 being told that there should be a restaurant open till 9 but as I got closer I saw a sign telling me that it was now a half hour later, since I was in another time zone. Dinner was out but when I finally got into Port Hope Simpson, a gas station was open and I got an egg salad sandwich and a homemade cinnamon bun. When I got to the Alexis hotel, I realized I had just missed dinner but Carol in the kitchen offered to heat me up some turkey vegetable soup and I ended up with a very decent dinner. I did my weights and yoga and then was ready for a well needed shower but there was no hot water. Great. The woman at the front desk told me just to wait a bit but it didn’t warm up so I showered in coldish water. After that it was TV time and I enjoyed watching. In the morning, I got up early and started doing some work on my outlines and getting some e-mailing done. I had coffee and my stomach seemed to have settled down (it was uneasy for a few days). I went back to bed and when I woke up I decided to head to Charlottetown and Pinset Arm. The drive was fine and Charlottetown was okay, not as poor looking as some of the earlier towns. Pinset Arm was also decent, and I rode my bike along the road past a pretty island. After the ride, I went back to motel for lunch and then I headed for St. Lewis. The ride through the spruces and firs was monotonous but after speaking to the woman at the hotel, I was hoping to see a moose or a bear. There are no deer and the caribou herd doesn’t come here anymore after the Churchill Falls project. There was an iceberg in the harbor but the fog prevented me from seeing it. I stopped away from the coast hoping that the cold wind would lessen but it didn’t so I rode in my sweater and jacket for 35 minutes and gave up. The inside of the truck was quite pleasant. I drove back to the hotel for a seafood dinner (all frozen) but quite good. Then it was a quick nap and back to work on my outlines and rules and sending out an e-mail. I had a cup of tea and did my weights and yoga in a very nice warm room. Now that the major dirt road driving is done (I have about 120 miles left and two days before taking the ferry to explore the southern coast which I think will be prettier), I am feeling much better. I am supposed to camp at Pinware but if it is really cold, I may just get a room to be more comfortable.
Saturday, August 1, 2015
I ended up eating at the Zonic restaurant and the chicken Caesar was quite good. Then it was back to the campground for a decent night’s sleep. In the morning I headed to the Tim Horton’s for coffee and an egg and cheese croissant. I did my Lumosity training and caught up a little on the news, the big thing being the piece of the 777 that has been discovered. It really has to be from MH 370. After that, I drove out to the golf course and was able to play nine holes, though the bugs drover me more than crazy. I ended up shooting a 51, and even though the bugs were fierce, it was a silly second shot on the last hole, a par 3, that doomed me. I went for the pin, which was no in line with the bunker, and ended up in the bunker and flubbed my first shot then hammered my next one and ended up with a 25 foot putt for a 49, and the putt wasn’t close. Then it was time for a nap and then a bike ride in the parking area around the mall. It was very good to be away from bugs and able to stop and not be attacked. Following the bike ride, I started my drive to Churchhill Falls and after fishing an interesting spot on one river and getting nothing, I stopped at a little stream and my luck changed. The little brook trout (up to nine inches) was killing my Royal Wulff and I caught and released 20. The black flies were awful (my wrists were bleeding) and even with my mesh jacket, I had to use bug spray. I drove into Churchill Falls desperate for a shower and to my disappointment I was told there were no campgrounds, but I could sleep in the parking lot at the town center. There was also a restaurant open till 10 and that was good. I went up to check on the hotel rate and when I told the clerk that I really needed a shower, he helped me get one in the gym. Such a shower I have never had. Boy, did that feel good. I gave the clerk 10 dollars after I finished and he was thankful. I rode my bike for 20 minutes and have just finished my pizza and salad dinner and carrot cake and tea dessert.