Newfoundland Trip - August 2009

Wednesday - Thursday, July 29 - 30

About 6:15PM we got all our stuff together and walked over to Evans, carrying packs and trailing wheeled suitcases. A bit overheated, but nothing like the current weather conditions in the Pacific North West, where temperatures were above 40C. Evans bus was warm, too. Walked right in at the airport, 0 line and a bored TSA guy. Boarded the plane and found our seat mate was from Brigus, NL. We asked her a few questions before trying to sleep. Evelyn slept a few hours and I slept some. We watched the sunrise and landed at Toronto (Pearson) airport. Negotiated customs. Moved our bags from In to Out and walked around the airport. We stopped at a Tim Horton's for an egg, biscuit and bacon breakfast after getting some money from an ATM. We got the maximum amount so we wouldn't have to pay the service fee more than necessary. Hopefully this will keep us going for a while. We found a quiet corner in the airport where Evelyn lay down on the floor and slept for another couple of hours while Peter read. We had bagels for lunch. Then we boarded a smaller plane with lots of kids for Deer Lake. There was a gate change, and the plane left late. We both slept a bit on this second flight. Evelyn probably got 5-6 hours of sleep, but Peter less than 4, total. We deplaned onto the runway in a light rain and walked into the small two gate terminal in Deer Lake. Or bags made it, too. We picked up our gray-green Pontiac from Budget Rentals and Evelyn drove us to Lucas House B&B. We checked in, met Mary, our hostess, at about 8:00 PM and then went out for dinner. We had two by fish and chips plus glass of white wine. Then back to our B&B to check my website. All OK. Weather working just fine, and reporting to yogurt. Then we met some other guests before going to bed at 9:30 here, 5:00 PM in Napa.

Friday, July 31 -

Alarm went off at 7:20, waking us both out of a sound sleep. The shower was small, with a plastic curtain and liquid "body works" soap. Maybe I'll get to like liquid bath soap by the end of the trip. Probably not. Breakfast was elegant and delicious. French toast, bacon, melon, apple and orange juice. There was an extra couple for the table, so we ate in shifts. Everyone opted for 8:00 AM, rather than 7 or 9. When we went back to our room after breakfast, it was a total disaster. I can't believe we made that big a mess, without even unpacking. But it all went back into the suitcases. (After we unfolded the extra bag for the dirty clothes.) We hit the road and headed north under cloudy skies. I used the wipers occasionally, to clear the light drizzle. But by the time we got to Gros Morne visitor center it was not misting anymore. We watched a beautiful 20 minute video introduction to the park, the only two visitors in a wonderful 100 seat theater. It would be the perfect replacement for Dreamweavers. After looking through the natural exhibits, we drove up the road to the Tablelands trail. It was an easy hour walk (4km) with only a bit of cross country on the way back as we climbed over the shoulder between the valleys. Then we drove to Green Garden trail but only went down to the creek to play on the bouncy suspension bridge. As we approached, we watched a group of kids "bouncing" the bridge. We did, too. Then we drove out to the town of Woody Point to see another small town. Lots of churches. On the way back we stopped at another trail head that had a couple of tables, where we had an apple and granola bar. It was now late enough to find our B&B and check in. However, we arrived a little bit earlier than Vera expected as she had not put the bottle of wine in honor of our 40th Anniversary in our room yet!! After a little visit, she suggested that we get ourselves down to the Anchor Pub to get tickets for the nights performance of Anchor's Away. Tickets apparently go quickly. We were able to get tickets for the show, and then decided to keep walking around town. We wanted to check out Earle's Restaurant where Vera had suggested we go for dinner. It was a long ways from the B&B and Peter was sweat soaked because of the high humidity. When we got back to the house, we rested a bit on the patio, sharing our wine from Vera with Pat from Ontario before DRIVING to Earle's for dinner - salmon for Evelyn, and moose stew for Peter. Then we drove to Anchor's Away, where we arrived at 7:32 for a 9:00 PM show. We watched the people for almost an hour before buying a pitcher of the tap brew. Bill and Sylvia joined us at our table, as the tables were all set for four. They were from the Bonavista peninsula. We talked to Morris for a while, but he was a bit hard to understand. He was actually next door to our B&B when we drove in, but we didn't notice. Morris grew up in Lobster Head, and lived at the light house. Finally the show started, just about on time. We enjoyed the music and stories, except that the lead sang/talked too close to the mic. That made it a bit too loud and also distorted, so it was hard to understand at times. We especially enjoyed the Ugly Stick, a home made percussion instrument. We left early, about 11:30, to beat the crowd. I thought our car would be surrounded by more cars, but it was all alone at the end of the street where we parked. We got home late and it was HOT. No fun.

Saturday, August 1 -

Huge breakfast of bacon, eggs, muffins and potatoes. The weather was looking better, so we registered for the 4:00 PM boat ride up Western Brook Pond. No money was required at this point; we could pay cash at the dock. We drove back to the Gros Morne visitor center and got a big map of the park. We drove out to Norris Point and looked back across at Tablelands and Woody Point. Walked down to the beach, and then drove back past our B&B to pick up long pants for the boat ride. We stopped at the Lobster Head lighthouse, where we looked around the exhibits, showed off morse code and tried the small trails. This is where we saw the Arctic Hare. We hiked up Berry Hill and out the trail to Brook Falls a short ways. This last trail was almost all over bogs on plank trails. Then we drove up to the Western Brook Pond parking lot and had lunch at a nearby picnic table. There were a few bugs here, about the worst we had on the whole trip, but not too bad. Then we hiked the 4 KM out to the boat dock, taking the scenic route on the way out. We were hoping to see some moose, but no luck. We boarded the boat and sat with a guy from New Hampshire who was trying out his new Olympus digital camera. He works as a printer, but didn't talk much. He reminded us greatly of Mark in appearance and maner. The fog cleared as we sailed up the pond, producing some pretty good pictures. We saw a black bear on shore. The pictures tell most of the story. Then we hiked back out via the direct route (3KM), drove back to Rocky Harbor and again had dinner at Earl's. This time Peter had the salmon and Evelyn had a pizza. We returned to our B&B and finished the wine and enjoyed the fancy jacuzzi, but WITHOUT the bubble-bath.

Sunday, August 2 -

We started the day with shorts and light shirts and another of Vera's large, delicious breakfasts. Then we drove up towards Lans Aux Meadows. We stopped at the Arches and at Port au Choix, as our park tickets were good for these places (and the Lobster Point lighthouse as well). We had a 7 day pass and hoped to use it on most of those days. At Port au Choix, we saw the remains of four different cultures all overlaid upon each other. We picniced with the seagulls before heading Northwest to Viking Village B&B where we checked in about 5:30. Then we headed out to find the next park, which was practically just across the main road. We dined at the Norseman, advertised as one of the world's best restaurants. It was, except the wine selection could have been better. We had an Innskillin Chardoney, just like the last bottle in our own wine cellar which we got while visiting David on Lake Osoyoos last fall. It was an excellent meal - Evelyn had her regular salmon and I had beef tenderloin done a perfect medium rare. Unfortunately it cost just like the meals in Napa. Back at the B&B we chatted with a young family of Rick, Connie and 4 yr old Nathanial and with Mary and Victor. The latter couple had come over on the Ferry, and had more horror stories to tell us. They wanted to get home on Friday, as Mary works weekends, so they wanted to leave Thursday morning on the ferry. The earliest boat they could schedule was Sunday night at midnight. The problem was that the new ferry had caught fire on Wednesday, and had turned back to Sydney. Then it was taken out of service for a couple of days. I think there was another fire aboard, but not sure when. The ferry company was trying to get traffic moving, but having a terrible time. We heard about people's experiences for the first couple of weeks we were in NL. We got to bed about 10:00 PM, and finally had a cool bedroom so we used our covers.

Monday, August 3 -

Breakfast was good, but simpler than Vera's. Actually, we just checked the things we wanted from the list, and if we wanted, we could have had everything, which would have been way too much. We got to Lans aux Meadows park just as it opened at 10:00 AM. We had been advised to get a tour with Clayton, and we were able to do that. Unfortunately, everyone else wanted to be on his tour also, so the group was huge. The reason is that Clayton grew up playing on the hills and mounds of the Viking settlement before it was discovered. Then he worked with the anthropologists/archeologists who were digging up the site, and finally he helped build the replica housing we were visiting. He really knew the place well. We really enjoyed the docent's stories as we went through the houses. See pictures. After the tour, we did the 3 KM hike around the seashore and meadow. No moose! Back to the B&B for nuts, apricots and tea for a late lunch. Then we drove to St. Anthony to see the Grenfel exhibit and home. This is still part of our park pass, and it's a good thing, too, because it was too costly to be worth it by itself. Dr. Grenfel brought modern medicine to Labrador and parts of NL. We walked up the hill behind his home to see what we could from the top. FOG and a few trees, but nothing else. We went to the local shopping mall to look around. I got some antacids. Too much wine. They had a computer store that still had RS-232 cards on the shelf. I didn't check to see if they were ISA or PCI. We drove back north, and had dinner at the Daily Catch. Fish and chips for Evelyn, fish soup and chef salad for Peter. Again we chatted with other tables of visitors, mostly from Ontario, before heading back to Viking Village B&B. Their common room is ideal for group discussion, so we talked with Victor and Mary some more about their ferry woes, and Neal and Allison about wine, sailing and travel in general. Evelyn called and reserved a room for us at Robin Hood motel in Grand Falls - Windsor for the next night. This was by far the most expensive room we had, and not that good. Then we went to bed where I finished Book 1 of the three for this trip.

Tuesday, August 4 -

Another Viking Village breakfast, simple but good. This time I had toast instead of a muffin so I could try out their berry jams. Very good. Guests at our table included a a recently retired Law professor from Willamette U. He got there after we left. The we headed out into the rain and fog toward Grand Falls - Windsor. We saw two moose! Well, Evelyn saw two, but Peter saw only one. He was driving. We ate from our carrot supply on the road, until we got to the Lobster Head lighthouse again. Here we stopped for a lunch of cheese, crackers, and an apple. The we hopped back into the car for the long drive to Robin Hood's in GF-W. The weather improved all day, and was quite warm and sunny when we arrived. We got a 6 pack of local beer at the liquor store and went out to a Chinese restaurant for dinner. As usual, I had pork fried rice, plus ginger beef. Evelyn had a regular dinner, so she could eat all of hers, but I had too much. It was good, but not cooked together enough. The ginger didn't really get into the beef, but was just separate pieces of ginger. Back at the motel we read and slept in the next morning.

Wednesday, August 5 -

We had a funny continental breakfast, but with interesting people to talk to. Everyone else was wearing shorts, so we changed after breakfast and headed out for Twillinggate. On the way we took a detour to the Fogo Island ferry so we would be sure we could find it the next morning. Immediately on arrival we went to the hall to get dinner-theater tickets before going on to the lighthouse. We also got our tickets for the Split Peas for the next night. We checked in to our Hillside B&B and we immediately ran up the hill behind to see the view of the town and harbor. Then we had a cool beer before taking a nap. This dinner-theater is not as commercial as Rocky Harbor, and we were sitting at a small church table set for 8. It was very crowded. The servers were the entertainment, and we heard some of the same things we had heard done by Anchor's Away at Rocky Harbor. The guy across from me had spent his working days in charge of a mental hospital and the whole town that grew up around it. Somewhat like Napa Junction. After the show we went back to Hillside B&B. It's 150 years old and creaks badly. Our hosts live next door, so this two up / two down house has three guest rooms and a kitchen / dining room where the continental breakfast is served.

Thursday, August 6 -

We mostly missed breakfast, but did get muffins, coffee and juice. I also had a bowl of Raisin Bran Flakes. Then we headed out at 7:30 for the Fogo Island ferry. The ambulance driver we met there the previous day said it would take 45 minutes, but we thought to allow an hour and were just right in our prediction. We were still quite a ways back in line when we arrived at 8:30 for the 9:00 ferry. Loading went pretty well, except for a horse trailer behind a big pickup. They took about 10 minutes to get aboard. We did scrape the bottom of the car as we drove down and up the uneven loading ramp. The day was perfect for shorts and T-shirts. We enjoyed our time on deck for the ride across to Fogo. We first drove to the town of Fogo, stopping at an information booth to pick up maps. We found the 5.4 KM Lion's Den trail and started walking. First we got to the original Marconi radio tower site, where he had put up a three piece 150 foot wooden tower. There were some pictures there. The Lion's Den trail is a loop, and the next stop was branch to the center of the loop at the top of the rocky hill where we could really get a good view of the whole north end of Fogo Island. See pictures. We continued hiking and eating blueberries for the rest of the morning. We stopped at two other lookout bumps on the way around. After the hike, we went into the Marconi interpretive center and had a private tour. It was a beautiful new square building, with two levels. It featured radio equipment and history, and seal hunting stuff. Centered on the top floor is an original accounting desk from the 1800's. It had been salvaged. Then we drove through Tilting, settled by the Irish so it still retains some of it's Irish culture, and on to Little Seldom to see the Marine Interpretive Center. Here we had an excellent private tour by a knowledgeable young lady. Our tour guides have for the most part been part of the history of the areas they are explaining. We did the last part of the tour quickly so as to have enough time to get back to the ferry. That was a waste, as the ferry was 45 minutes late and then three cars got on at the very end, almost an hour late. But we had a nice ride back across, stopping to let three cars off at Change Island. On board we chatted with a car mechanic / postal worker couple for most of the trip. Since we were running so late, we stopped at the "chip truck" to get sausage dogs for dinner. In Washington state, chip trucks are full of sawdust, but here they sell hot dogs, hamburgers, french fries and the like. We might call them a "roach coach"? We drove back to Twillinggate just in time for the Split Peas. We really enjoyed their music, as it was the most musical of any we heard on the island. Their lead singer just received an Mdiv degree, so I introduced myself as a Jesus Seminar associate, and we chatted a bit during the break. She mentioned talking after the show, but it was so hot I didn't want to stay around after. During the break, we got Toutons and Tea. It's fried bread, and should be served with either molasses or berries (or both, as I did). Evelyn skipped the molasses. We ended the evening singing a couple verses of the Newfoundland National Anthem, which is quite good and singable. We drove home beneath a beautiful full moon after we bought one of their CD's. Another beautiful day and evening.

Friday, August 7 -

Up at the regular time (about 7:20 or so) for breakfast at 8:00. That's the most common B&B breakfast time in Newfoundland. This time we ate with the two other couples staying at Hillside. The meal was simple, toast, muffins and fruit, but good. No cooking. Then we watched as the other two couples crammed luggage for 8 into their Honda Civic. It looked to me as if the thing was full and there were still 4 large suitcases on the driveway. We left before they solved their puzzle. Since the day dawned cloudy and humid, we were in shorts again. We drove through Musgrave Harbor where we almost got stuck in their parade. I don't know why they would have a parade on Friday, but most of the village was there, and the store was closed for the occasion. Next we went on to Newtown where we got plums, cheese and crackers for more lunches. Here we had another excellent tour of the Barbour Living Heritage Village by Brenda, whose Grandmother was a maid in the master's house. She was one of 8 maids. We had a late lunch at the Newtown park. One table, swings and slide for kids. We drove around the harbors, stopping at a hardware store so I could get another souvenir: a clothes line pulley. Most of the houses in NL have a serious clothes line in their yard. It is just a double rope that runs over two pulleys from the house out to a corner pole. We drove to Greenspond before returning to our B&B. All the signs were for west travelling customers, so it was easy to find on the way back. Here we found a California style house in a beautiful location, right on a tickle. This was the largest room we ever had, with a fridge and microwave, large bath with large tiled shower, and they offered to wash and dry a batch of laundry for only $5.00. Since we were just about out of clean clothes, that was perfect. We had a glass of wine out on the deck as we chatted with our hosts. He is a retired psychologist who has written a coaching type book, and his wife is an artist. I shared with him "Reinventing the Sacred", which I'm still working on, and he shared "What the Bleep do we know?" and Deepak Choepra whom I don't like much. Unfortunately I let him know in probably too blunt a fashion. It was cool on the deck, and raining slightly as we ate dinner at "Skippers". Not one of the better meals on the trip. Salmon, fries, and canned peas. The fish was fine, but canned peas seem to be a staple of NL which we didn't enjoy much. After dinner we finished up the wine, repacked our clean clothes, checked the computer and just relaxed. Did I say yogurt was down? The power failed on our first Friday morning, and it didn't come back up correctly. It was powered and pingable, but no ssh server so no control. And the disk with the website didn't mount, so the website was down. I had e-mailed David earlier to see if he could help, but no luck. It was wedged! And I found that I couldn't send e-mail with gmail from this particular computer, so it wasn't much help. Their book is "Dancing with Change" by Hugh and Joanne Wiley (0-9730963-0-6 or 978-0-9730963-0-9). The only problem with this place is that it's in the middle of nowhere. A great escape, but nothing to do if you don't bring it yourself, and not much in the way of places to eat dinner.

Saturday, August 8 -

Breakfast @ 8:00 again. We had an egg strata (as Evelyn calls it), with fruit and muffins. Mmmm.... We drove to Trinity and looked around town before the pageant. This is a walking theater that explains the 1600's fishing society in town. There were 10 fun vignettes, each about a different feature of the society. Then we went to the Twine Loft and made reservations for dinner (more later) and had lunch before assembling for the pageant. Again it was a very large group. The pageant was fun (see pictures) and afterwards we drove out to our B&B in Dunfield to check in. The host(s) were not there, but another guest couple were enjoying the back deck so we joined them. In the time before the hostess arrived, she smoked 4 cigs. And it wasn't that long. Margaret is a large woman who works two accommodations and as a nurse during the week. Fortunately Ed does much of the B&B work during the week. But back to the other early guests. We joined them and had another beer from our six pack of Eric's Red, a local brewery. They were from St. John's and on their way across the island to a fishing lodge. Actually, they invited us to pick a room, so we got number two of three. When Margaret did arrive, she hung out the laundry. We then went back into Trinity to the Twine Loft for an excellent dinner of salmon, roasted roots and spuds au gratin. Then it was back to the B&B to read and get a good night's sleep. I didn't, really, as the bed was quite firm and against the wall. When I tried to get up at night, I got a bad cramp crawling off the end of the bed before I stood up.

Sunday, August 9 -

We had breakfast a bit before 8:00, consisting of waffels with blueberries or partridge berries. Delicious, but not too filling. Then we drove to Elliston to see the wall of puffins. Yep, a gillion of them, and a few seagulls, too. Puffins are so clumsy. Then we drove through Dungeon provincial park on our way to the Bonavista lighthouse. More pictures of arches. Fortunately, Sundays are free at the lighthouse, so we got to go through without paying. This was our day for seeing previous travellers again. First, we saw a couple from Hillside B&B watching the puffins. Then at the lighthouse we saw the six people who were eating lobster at the Norseman. Finally the couple on a GoldWing motorcycle who had the third room at our B&B. The Bonavista lighthouse is a unique design which was well and carefully explained by the docents. At least this time I don't think they were related to the original lighthouse keepers. But we did learn that lighthouse keepers were held in high regard by all the villagers. They were among the upper class (if there was such a thing) in the village society. This light was a unique design, with special oil (and later kerosene) lamps, silver and brass parabolic mirrors, and a clock system that was wound every two hours like a grandfather clock. It had 4 clear and 2 red glass chimneys on the lamps, so the signal was white, white, red every two minutes. After the lighthouse, we drove to Mockbagger Fish Plantation. A fish plantation is a place where the other requirements of a fishing fleet might be met. A large house with gardens for fruits and veggies. One of the buildings was used as an early Methodist church. We had lunch at a table on the shore where we met Wilbur Hobbs, a local wood (and other media) carver. We were going to look for his work in town, but couldn't find a store. He told us about the local houses, and his carving in many different materials. We then went to see the Mathew Legacy, John Cabot's first ship. Well, actually a replica. We didn't have time to go onto the ship itself, but looked around outside. Then we drove back through Trinity to New Bonaventure and the sight of the filming of "Random Passage", a historical saga of NL. Docents told the story of early life in this tiny harbor. We heard a fiddle / accordion duo play authentic NL music, and caught just the last bit of reading by a local author. We bought one of her books. See the village in pictures. Then we headed back to the B&B to meet another pair of guests, bikers on a Harley who had ridden from Nanimo, BC on July 1. We headed back into Trinity for dinner and a play, stopping for dinner at the Dock Marina. We got there just ahead of the crowd, so when the Honda riders from our B&B appeared shortly after we were seated, we asked them to join us. The were also going to the play. Service was slow, but we all finished in plenty of time to walk over to the theater and see "Creature" which was really an opera. It was about whether it is better to be a free sea creature (mermaid) or a political leader, and what each could learn from the other. The singing was excellent. After the play (opera) we all sat around the B&B family room drinking beer and wine made by our host, Ed. To bed later than usual (10:30+).

Monday, August 10 -

Up at 7:00 and read for 45 minutes while Evelyn got her beauty rest. Breakfast by Ed, egg strata, fruit, OJ, coffee. Drove to Cupids in three hours where we arrived at 12:30 and checked in. Our room was ready. We had lunch in their Tea Room, turkey sandwich for Evelyn and Caesar salad for Peter. After lunch we went out for a hike over most of the Burnt Head trails at the top of the point. These trails leave right from the corner of the cemetery that is next to our converted church B&B, Cupid's Haven. See pictures, as it's beautiful. We did not climb the final bump, as we didn't have the right boots. On the trail we met a family of four from Labrador who found a geocache. It was part way up the bump, but not far enough to need better shoes. Evelyn tripped on the end of one of the bridge/trail things and scratched her knee. When we got back from the hike, I went around the B&B taking pictures (see same). Then we drove the few KM into Brigus for a look around. We found Hawthorn House, the home of Bob Bartlett, but didn't have time to visit before dinner. We drove to the Brigus tunnel on the way back to Cupids via a back road that led us right past the Skipper Ben B&B where we stopped for dinner. It was another nice three course dinner, but much less expensive than the Norseman. And no wine saved us a bit more. I had the poached salmon and Evelyn had chicken in a fancy sauce. Before dinner we stopped at Cupid's Museum where an eager college student told us much about the local history. The museum tickets also included entrance to the local archaeology dig, but again we were too late. We thought about going the next day. Then back to dinner before going back to the church B&B to read and unwind. They had a very nice lounge, but we were the only ones ever to use it while we were there, so no other travellers to talk to.

Tuesday, August 11 -

Awoke to RAIN. No need to hurry off, so we read for a bit in the lounge to see if the rain would stop. Nope. So we set off for Heart's Content and the first Transatlantic Cable Station, which is now a museum. It was a wet drive, but a very interesting installation. I was trying out their morse code system when I met a ham from Alberta. The only ham I met on this trip. I tried my radio several times, but never raised anyone. Then we drove to Brigus to see the Hawthorn House. This was the home of Cpt. Bob Bartlett, who helped Perry discover the North Pole. We spent some time watching his newsreels of adventures on the Morrisy, his small arctic schooner. It's the same size as the L.R. French which we have sailed. Then we drove up to Bay Roberts to get a bottle of wine at the liquor store (none at regular stores). Then back to the B&B to have dinner in the Tea/Dining room. We each had shepherds pie and we split a dessert. Then we went back to our room and watched a silly movie on the little TV there. It doesn't look like Canada has digitized TV yet, but I guess I can't really tell from my small sample.

Wednesday, August 12 -

We started with French Toast and clearing weather. This is our day to visit St. John's and the eastern edge of the island. We started by driving right down into town, where we ran into the other "season" in NL. The two seasons are Winter and Construction, and we got detoured off our carefully planned route and so lost, of course. But it didn't take too much to find our way back to Signal Hill and the Cabot Tower. We spent some time in the visitor's center, watching the history movies (yes, two at the same time, with the actors talking to each other from adjacent screens). I asked the docent what a Marconi coherer does, but she didn't know. They had one (or a model) on display. We hiked up to the Tower, past the Queen's overlook with it's six canons. At the top of the Tower they have a ham radio station, with an unlicensed docent, but the antenna was broken so no fun. On the way back down the trail we asked a ranger (docent?) about Quidi Vidi brewery, and got excellent directions. It's further than I expected, however. We got there about lunch time, so had to wait for the 12:30 tour and tasting. We went out back to the picnic tables right on the dock and had cheese, crackers and granola bars while listening to local music recordings on their outdoor speakers. We recognized much of the music, as we already had two CDs. At the appointed time, Charlie took us on a tour of the facility, and offered us tastes of six or seven beers they make. We liked the 1892 dark ale and their 7, a lighter but 7% alcohol beer. Perhaps mixed??? Since the tour included one bottle of our choice, we took one of each, unopened. While our tour guide was dealing with a DHL shipment, we put our bottles in the car to save for dinner. Probably the most interesting point on the tour is where they recycle used, labeled beer bottles. They have a super hot sterilizer into one end of which they load used beer bottles of the correct shape. Any brand, any kind of beer. The labels are washed off and the bottles cleaned really well before they are filled with their new, fresh beer and labeled with their own labels. My notes say they recycle bottles just as I do when homebrewing. (but probably hotter) After the tour, we wandered around toward Cape Spear. Evelyn was driving, and I found out how hard it is to use the local maps. I had two, one with road numbers and one with road names. But just try to find anything with both. We finally got to the cape, parked and walked up to the new and old lighthouses. Then we went down the trails as far as we could to the East. We didn't go past the Dangerous Coast signs like some people did. So we didn't actually get to the most easterly point in North America, but we could safely see it just a 100 feet or so past the fence. On the way to the cape we drove by many acres of truck gardens, the highest garden density we saw on the whole trip. After the cape and lighthouse, we decided to take Hwy 60 back to Cupids. Well, that's the SLOW, scenic route. We were too late for dinner in the B&B, so we went back up to Bay Roberts for pizza at Pizza Delight. They make a very good pizza that's different from our California varieties. Then back to the B&B to read and finish our wine in the lounge.

Thursday, August 13 -

Another Cupid's breakfast, good but not up to some of the other B&Bs. It's interesting how each place has strong and weak points. How good are the beds? The bathrooms? How much space do we have? Is it quiet, by location or construction? How friendly are the hosts, and the other guests? How are the breakfasts? Any common room facilities? Computer access, and what form (their computer, or wireless access for our computer?) Every place we stayed would get rated good to excellent in some category, but no place got all excellent ratings. After breakfast we packed up and headed for Deer Lake, clear across the island. A long seven hour drive, but beautiful weather and gorgeous countryside. We arrived in Deer Lake about 4:00 PM, checked in with Mary at Lucas house again, and then decided to go down to Corner Brook to see the the Bowdin sail in. We got lost (again!!!) in Corner Brook, since it was a big town of 25,000 (second biggest on the island). But finally we found our way to the place they had set up for the festivities. Since we only had a small MacDonalds lunch, we got another pair of sausage dogs at the only working concession. They were early. As we were standing in the shade of the next tent, eating our dogs, a woman came up to us and asked if we were representatives of that tent (I think it was an educational establishment). We told her no, that we were from California and had driven clear across the island from Hawthorn House on one side to here to see the Bowdin come in. She was mightily impressed. And she was the manager of the whole round the island sailing trip. It was her idea five years ago to do this. She is the Executive Director of the Historic Sites Association of Newfoundland and Labrador. She introduced us to the local coordinator, another Katherine who invited us to the private reception after the speeches. It would be late, but we went over to the museum and met a few people and looked around. And ate some snacks and had a small glass of wine, and generally enjoyed ourselves very much. We had to leave before it got too dark so we could avoid the moose on our half hour drive back to Deer Lake. What moose? We think it's a myth. To bed.

Friday, August 14 -

We got up at 7:00 and prepared for another trip to Corner Brook. After another good French Toast breakfast. We got to Corner Brook about 9:30 when we drove out the south side of Hummer Arm. We got back to take a tour around the Bowdin about 11:00. We talked with the maritime academy students, and then went over to see about buying a CD. We mentioned that we were very disappointed at the Corner Brook system for selecting those to take a ride on the Bowdin (no draw as advertised). She knew who we were, so went to talk to Dean. He added our names to the list for the 2:30 sailing. It was about noon, so we took our new CD and headed into town for lunch, water and sun screen. All at Wal-Mart... This was the slowest MacDonalds we've ever seen. We got back to the dock about 1:00 PM and watched the first group of sailors go out. We talked with a used car salesman for about an hour while waiting for them to return. It looked like everything was fine for our trip, but then it was announced that the 2:30 sailing would be postponed until 6:30, if it went at all, because of the high winds. Unfortunately we couldn't wait that long. At that point we listened to the monologue about the Karlick disaster. Another talented performer, and then we headed back up to Deer Lake. On the way home we took a tour of the town, got gas, postcards, and cold beer to sip while reading out on the deck at Lucas House. It was then that we noticed the For Sale sign and talked a bit with Mary about needing to be with her family, since both her son's had died. We drank our beer while reading and then went back to the Deer Lake Motel for the same meal we had when we flew into town. Fish and Chips, but minus the glass of white wine. Afterwards we came back to pack, sort, throw out, and generally get ready for our flight home early the next morning. Evelyn made us each a peanut butter sandwich, since we would be gone long before breakfast. We even took our showers before bed.

Saturday, August 15 -

Up early, 4:45 AM (Yep, that's 12:15 AM Napa time). We dressed quietly and snuck out about 5:00. The short drive to the airport got us there early, as usual. This is the only airport with no Rental Car Return sign, but we got it back to the same slot where we got it. We said goodbye after about 4500 KM. The flight was crowded with kids, but not bad. Then we spent another 4 hours in the Toronto airport, customs, a sandwich and I found a five way sudoku in a discarded newspaper. I finished it just seconds before we boarded the plane to SFO. On the plane I watched the latest Star Trek movie (more cowboys & Indians). We landed on time, and my bag actually made it again. We waited 90 minutes for Evans, but got to Napa 45 minutes early at 6:00 PM. After the short walk home we had spaghetti and toasted our fine trip with a bottle of Hanna-Muir Merlot donated by Donna LaPoint. It's 2:00 AM in Newfoundland. Rhymes with understand.