So we’re home again after our long weekend in Saint John, NB, safe and sound. It was a good weekend, and I can’t believe how quickly it went by. Can it really be time for me to go back to work tomorrow morning? Then again, at least I only had a 4-day week last week and now a 4-day this weekend, so that makes it a lot easier.
Neal picked me up at work with bags and Milo in tow on Thursday, and we got right on the road. We got in early enough to be able to sit and chat with his parents before we all headed to bed.
We woke up a little on the late side on Friday morning, which is precisely what I needed, Neal picked up some breakfast for us and we had a lazy morning. And then… Oh, and then…
I had a plan for the weekend. Without getting into too much detail, my latest novel idea is going to work in the history of Partridge Island, the quarantine island in Saint John harbour where a lot of the Irish immigrants fleeing the Potato Famine were sent to when they showed signs of typhus. A lot died.
So, because that’s going to be a rather important part of my novel, I thought it’d be awesome to go out to Partridge Island to see what it really felt like, to get a sense of the place. Thing is, you’re not, technically, supposed to go out there. It’s not like Grosse-Ile in Quebec where it’s a big tourist attraction. The only way out there, unless you have a boat (and even then, it’d probably be a challenge to tie it up somewhere) is to cross over the breakwater. Which is made of big frigging rocks and boulders.
Now, I’m not great on rocks. I’m pretty darn nervous, but then, I was also pretty darn determined to get out there. Neal was really good with me and stuck close the whole way and helped me up and down and stuck out a hand when I just needed that extra sense of security.
According to the weather forecast, Friday was supposed to be the best day. But that wasn’t so. It ended up POURING when we were about halfway out there, but we figured we might as well keep going. We had covered about 80% of the breakwater when we looked up, shielded our eyes from the rain, and saw that there was a big ol’ fence all around. And the next part of the breakwater looked pretty difficult to maneuver over. It was becoming more and more treacherous out there too, with all the rain, so we decided to turn back. Except that it was A LOT scarier going back. For one thing, the tide had come in when we were heading out, so the rocks didn’t seem quite as high up, but when we turned back, the tide had gone out. Plus, with all the rain, the rocks were really slippery. We were both soaked to the bone, cold and I found that my grip wasn’t as good anymore.
So we did what any other sensible couple, found stranded out on the breakwater in the Bay of Fundy in a downpour would do:
We called the Coast Guard.
No, I’m not kidding. Neal and I were rescued by the goddamn Coast Guard. They came in their orange zodiac - which, by the way, was the best part and loads of fun, bouncing along - and took us back to the mainland. We had a bit of a “talking to” by the Skipper of the Coast Guard and a cop, but luckily we weren’t charged. And really, I would have fought it had we been charged because there is no fence, no sign, nothing to deter people until they got to the other side when really, it’s too late. Suffice it to say, I’m sure it wont’ be long before at least a sign goes up.
The next day, we did a bit of visiting and then some safer and more legal touring around the downtown area. We ran into the parents of some friends of Neal’s and discovered that a small story had run in the paper about us being rescued! Thank goodness, our names weren’t put in, although a lot of people Neal knows already knew.
On Saturday evening, we headed down to Neal’s parents’ camp -it’s a really cute cabin on a lake complete with a generator. We spent the night and then all day Sunday down there, going out on the lake in the canoe and the motor boat, trying to feed the hares, squirrels, and chipmunks. A MASSIVE raccoon came out and fed out of one of the birdfeeders too!
We got back around 9 or so last night, and then hung out at the apartment, and today we just went for brunch with a friend of Neal’s and then got on the road to head home.
So the weekend was definitely complete - some excitement to start it off, and then nice and calm and relaxing for the rest!
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