Sunday, August 21, 2011

We're in Nova Scotia

It's a beautiful Sunday Morning. We were awoken before 6am by the most annoying sound like a whiny lawn mower. Line painters were working in the WalMart lot where we were parked and were working literally under our windows. Needless to say, I bet every RV in the lot got an early start. We were the first to leave and took off for the Irving truck stop east of town to use the bathroom as our portapotti is full and there hasn't been a single rest area or dump station so far in New Brunswick that we could empty it at. It's sort of a problem if you're a girl and have no toilet you can use :(

Apart from that, we're moving along nicely. The morning dawned misty and cool which was a nice change from the humidity and heat we encountered as soon as we came down out of the hills into New Brunswick yesterday. I'm hoping that once we get closer to the coast it'll cool down a bit and have a refreshing breeze. Either way, it was a nice start to the morning and reminded me of vacations we used to have as a family in England on the canals. Misty mornings that burned off into lovely warm afternoons and cooled down again so you could sleep at night. I remember it being a bit damp too, and it was damp in the motorhome last night a bit, but as we had all the windows open it wasn't too bad. I'll be very glad to finally have a new home though and give this thing a really good scrubbing out!

We've passed Moncton now and we're about 30 km from the Nova Scotia border. We're going to stop and see about a dump station and get some maps maybe. We might be sleeping in a campground for one more night while we figure out our new place, but not to worry, it'll all get sorted out in the next few hours. We're not worried.

So far on our trip we've overtaken 3 vehicles that were going slower than we were, including one tractor. Hmmm..3 in 7000+km. Lol! But we're getting better than 10 mpg in this old thing so we're happy. The road's gotten a bit lumpy for the past few km's so we've had to slow down more and watch it with our hitch. It's continued to slowly drop by fractions of an inch for the past couple of days so I think that once this long journey is done we'll only be towing a light trailer behind this or some serious welding. I'm leaning towards the light trailer option.

The girls are watching veggie tales- The Pirates Who Don't Do Anything and colouring so that's good. Meghan is wearing her new (on sale) pyjamas and Kate bought a Tinkerbell shirt at WalMart for $3 so she'll wear that today as her special 'clean clothes for Nova Scotia”. Hey, anything to break the boredom and monotony. I've been saving 2 bottles of Martinelli's sparkling apple juice for dinner tonight so if we are'll be rice, canned meat balls and Martinelli's by moonlight!

I'm going to miss this motorhome when it's not our cozy little home. It's definitely got sentimental value to us far beyond what it's worth. We bought it for $1400 I think. We've paid maybe another $4000 in gas, oil and repairs/upgrades to it over the last 5 months and it's been both our home and moving vehicle and has safely seen us from Vancouver Island on the far West Coast of Canada to Nova Scotia on the East Coast. Sure we've put a lot of time and effort into it but it's been a fun journey in so many ways. I have mixed feelings about it now that it's almost over. I think we'll probably keep the motorhome and use it for short road trips and weekends away. Just think how much shopping and groceries I could fit in it!! he he he :)

Steve is happy, we just passed RCI, Radio Canada International's short wave antenna array in the Tantramar Marshes. Sometimes on the West Coast we could pick up their signal depending on the skip. Now he thinks we'll be able to pick it up much more easily and consistently.

Next stop...the Welcome Centre.........Welcome to Nova Scotia! The kids are cheering! Time for a quick stop.

Ok, stop over. They're happy to be able to explore a new place. We gassed up in Amherst and put in Gold gas because the higher octane should cut down ont he knocking o fhte engine when it's under load. Believe it or not, this engine is actually a high compression one and should use the higher performance gas. We're coming up to the Cobequid Pass toll highway and will test out the difference. Yo're going to have to put up with my ramblings for a while longer as Chris needs to charge his iPod so I have to have the MacBook open. Hmmm, what to tell you...we tried Lobster flavoured chips. Steve thought they were good, the rest of us were rather less enthusiastic. They don't really taste like any lobster I've eaten sort of like grape pop doesn't taste anything like grapes. It should be called 'purple' not grape because everything that's purple tastes the same.

It was super windy at the visitors centre and across the salt marshes. Chris was very disappointed that it was cloudy and dull. We told him it's always like that in NS and he cracked a whole bunch of jokes about the pale people here not knowing what a tan is. Now of course the sun is burning off the clouds and it's getting warm though not as warm as the 30 it's supposed to be in New Brunswick today. I hope.

Other observations from the road....New Brunswick has no rest stops on the highway in from Quebec and neither Quebec or New Brunswick marks their bridges with a clearance sign so there are plenty of bridges with chunks missing underneath. All the yellow flowers at the side of the road look nice but it's not scotch broom which is both the plague and beauty of Vancouver Island. I'm going to have to spend years now learning all the names and habits of the local weeds as there are some I'm not familiar with yet. I guess that's part of the learning curve when you move into a new place and farm or grow veggies. Even fields within a farm will have their own characteristics that make them suitable for different crops. That's the beauty of being settled in a place for a while, you get to learn where the frost pockets are, where the soil dries out quickest and all the other little variations that make a difference. The trick is to make notes so you can remember the details and then look back at the end of each season and decide what you'd do differently. I always think I'll remember but invariably there are so many other things to think about that I forget. And if you're rotating crops then you won't want the information for 4 years in the future when you're planting the same crop. I don't know about you...but there's no way I've got a hope of remembering that far ahead.

Up the hill we go...we're at the last exit before the toll station. No trucks over 3000kg. I guess we are ok then. It's getting warmer for sure and the engine cover is getting very hot too from the engine working so it's making it warmer too. Phew! Another skunk! We have passed a dead skink on the road at least once every single day of driving. Oh it's quite breath taking! This one was at least short lived but with some the smell just follows you up the highway. I think yesterday was the worst day for skunks with a total of 3 at various times. Maybe we'll get lucky and that will be the only one for today. And really, if it's the worst thing that's going to happen each day then we're laughing!

Steve and I are talking about windmills and photo cells. There are wind turbines here just like in Alberta. At some point that's something we'll get set up for our home. A combination of windmill and photo voltaic and if we're really lucky, a stream or brook that can turn another turbine. I guess you'll just have to keep reading our blog each day and see what we're working on next.

Well, the engine is pinging a little less than it was before but not much for the price difference between the cheapest gas and the most expensive. Steve says he's going to check the timing once we're done driving and maybe advance it a little too.

Well, we're coming up to the toll booth so maybe I'll stop it with my blow by blow account or maybe that should be mile by mile. Have a great afternoon and we'll check back soon.

Ok, we're heading to Mullens place in Nictaux. Truro is nice but the roads are crowded and all the weekend drivers are impatient and inattentive. time to get out of town and hit the road once more. We have less than 3 hours left before stopping this amazing cross country drive.

Love all of you who have kept us in your thoughts and prayers over the past months and especially as we've been driving. We appreciate your support and positive notes.

Since it's Sunday and I have a second.... here's a message for all of you who need a reminder that we are all capable of the most amazing things. Maybe they're not the same as your neighbours but they are uniquely special to you.

We each contribute in small ways or large to the growth and development of mankind, even in the small ways we love and support our friends and family.


  1. Hi Elizabeth,

    YEAH ... you made it ! I've been following your journey as you know, and it makes me smile for all of you. I wonder though if you had been to Nova Scotia before, or is this the first time you've set eyes on it ? If we make the move from B.C. to the unknown shores of Nova Scotia, I would most certainly love to meet all of you. I am still early in my research stage of figuring things out, but it looks promising. Overwhelming too, I might add. You've been there and done it. Way to go ... I hope you will continue writing here and there, as your words provide such a wealth of information to us that follow behind you in search of a new tomorrow.

    Best Wishes to all,
    Cheers... Helga :)

  2. Hi Limette! Can't wait to see your farm some time. Hi Helga. No, we've never been here before and moving to somewhere sight unseen is a bit nerve wracking but it's been worth it so far and we are loving our first week here. I'll be sure to keep posting and let you know all the good and strange things that are bound to happen to us. It should be humorous as well as entertaining. And if you need to ask questions please do and I'll try to answer them. Limette answered loads of questions for me before we came and I'm happy to help someone else.