Visiting the Canadian Maritimes
A long-time dream of mine had been a trip down east. I approached my mother and sister to see if they would like to do a girls trip, and we made arrangements for a bus tour of Nova Scotia, Prince Edward Island and New Brunswick. My mother Agnes, who was 83, my older sister Joanne, my daughter Lindsay and I set off by air from Edmonton and Lethbridge, Alta. We arrived in Halifax on September 19, 2015, and stayed in the beautiful Lord Nelson Hotel in the heart of the city. The tour company hosted a welcome reception with local wine and appetizers so that we could meet the others who would be sharing our adventure. There were folks from Australia, all parts of the United States and, of course, Canada.
After a good sleep, we set off early the next morning for a guided tour of the downtown, which included a stop at the cemetery where many of the unfortunate souls from the Titanic made their final resting place. We then drove to tiny, picturesque Peggys Cove on St. Margarets Bay for lunch, exploration and pictures. While driving back to Halifax, we passed a house that had been beautifully painted with a scene of a lighthouse and the ocean on its front. Even the tree in the yard was painted with yellow, pink and blue stripes. There is much pride of place evident in the homes of Nova Scotia and P.E.I. Yards were immaculately groomed and all the houses looked freshly painted.
Once back in Halifax, we stopped at the Citadel for the changing of the guards. The kilted guards stand in position for only an hour at a time; when they are relieved by the next guard, they convey their orders verbally. At the time the fort was built, most of the soldiers could not read or write, so all orders had to be memorized and passed along verbally. There are also large masts, like those on the big ships, within the fort that displayed flags showing what type of ship was coming into the harbour. Masts were set up in strategic places along the way to New Brunswick that would fly the same flags. This way, merchants of the day would know what type of ship had come in and could determine if they needed to go pick up provisions.