Friday, June 17, 2005

Sooner Rather Than Later

I said I'd post about Canada later, but thanks to my work at work being done, I've got the free time. Canada post it is:

Well, after an excruciating five hour drive from Greenock to Manchester we flew for a not-so-excruciating five and a half hours to Halifax, Nova Scotia, where we were picked up by the not-quite-yet-Mr-and-Mrs Graeme and Emily, who drove us another three or four hours from Halifax to Stanhope, Prince Edward Island. We originally intended to hire a car at the airport and follow G&E to PEI, but we ran into some, er, financial difficulties. The car hire price alone was fine (and we would've been driving in style in a Pontiac Grand Am) but then the insurance was tacked on- an additional $50 a day for 7 days. Ouch. Doable, but ouch. Then the problem arose in that both Scott and I are under 25, the car hire age. We could still rent the car--for an additional $50 a day per underage driver. We cancelled the car hire.

When we got to Stanhope (or "Stanup" as the natives refer to it) we were greeted warmly by Emily's family and a big pot of hot chilli and fajitas. It was 2am our time, but we scarfed down several fajitas and several bowls of chilli regardless. We were starving.

One interesting note about PEI. You can't (at least not easily) find soda or beer in plastic bottles or cans. Something about a Pepsi plant long ago that used glass bottles only and a rule/law/ordinance was made that glass bottles were to be solely used to support the local business. Or something. Anyway, you put a dollar in the machine and down plops - er rather, crashes - a glass bottle of your favourite drink. Soda in glass always tastes better anyway, and you get money back when you return the bottle. Just like Mexico.

Another interesting piece of PEI triv: They have just built a bridge from Nova Scotia to PEI which is 12 or 14 kilometers long. It's absolutely stunning. It's called the Confederation Bridge. But the interesting/ghastly part is you have to pay $40 to cross over on it.

Scott and I did end up renting a car once we got to PEI, thanks to a hook up Emily's dad had with the car hire place. They didn't have any smooth convertibles or sexy Grand Ams left, but they did have a couple of Dodge Caravans and a Ford pickup. We chose a Caravan for its *slightly* better gas mileage. We felt big, vulnerable and beast-like. Scott had a penchant for turning corners as if he were still in the Skoda, and I was terrified each time that we would tip over - particularly because we didn't have insurance. Like good ole Christians, we trusted in the divine power of God for our protection, not some man-made insurance policy. Terrifying.

Graeme and Emily's wedding was delightful. They had it in a sort-of enclosed pavillion thing with windows raised overlooking the "Clyde". Emily was the second most beautiful bride I'd ever seen - I, of course, being the first. (Joke. That was a joke.) She looked like an antique doll with her gorgeous Victorian-style dress and her dark dark hair pinned up in loose curls. Her colours were light blue and caramel brown, which added to the "antiquiness", and her maids of honour looked absolutely stunning next to her in their caramel dresses. But best of all, and most attractive of all, was the Best Man. He was wearing a stunning black suit with an impressive silver tie, and I couldn't keep my eyes off of him. He was gorge. (Short for gorgeous, those of you who don't speak Lor.)

The food was great, too. Oh man, it was DANG good.

Highlights of the trip (so as to keep your interest by changing the format and not allowing myself to babble on and on):
1. The wedding (or course)
2. The day after the wedding, Scott and I went to Cavendish, the island's sort-of tourist hub. I got to go to Green Gables, the famous home of Anne Shirley in the fictional town of Avonlea (which is actually Cavendish). Scott didn't get it, but I, having read the entire series as a youngster, loved it. If it hadn't been rainy, we would've taken a walk down Lovers Lane or the Haunted Wood, but instead we just toured the house (which was much smaller than I imagined) and got a picture taken with a bottle (glass) of raspberry cordial. Watch out, Diana, the stuff is brutal!
3. As we searched for the Boardwalk, we passed a Ripley's Believe It Or Not!, of which Scott had never heard. So we swerved to the left and parked. It was great. I love the Ripley's. It's one museum where I can actually read all the little signs without getting bored. It was a major highlight of the trip for both of us.
4. We found the Boardwalk, and I got to shop. This is big.
5. One thing I've always wanted to do, geeky as it totally is, is get those old-timey pictures taken where you dress up in old fashioned clothes and get photographed in front of some old fashioned set. We drove past Grandpa's Photo Studio, and I begged Scott to let me look. The prices were way high (as they are in Canada - stupid country) so we just looked and went on our way. But the whole night I kept thinking of how I'd always wanted to do that and how much I'd regret it if we didn't. So my darling, self-sacrificing husband took me back the next day, and we got our picture taken. It was the biggest joy of my .... modeling career. Let's just say this: My husband makes a SEXXXY cowboy, while I only moderately pass for a saloon girl.
6. The other highlight was two days after the wedding. Scott and I wanted to give a gift to Emily's parents for being so gracious to us and helping us out so much while we were there. So we stopped by around lunchtime (the timing totally coincedence) to give them a nice bottle of port. Emily's mom quickly invited us in before even seeing we had a gift in our hands and asked us to stay for lunch. We decided she and her husband must've been feeling the empty nest by the way she completely mothered us. She gave us tunafish sandwiches, crisps, soda and cakes. Offered us biscuits and tea, too. It made us feel really happy for going over, not only because we got a free lunch, but because we felt that it made them happy that we came over. The house did feel awfully empty and quiet with the Post-Wedding Syndrome, and it brightened our day (significantly) to have seemingly given them a moment's parenting joy again.

Then, as Scott mentioned earlier, we shuttled three hours back to Halifax, waited around for four, flew for 5.5 and drove again for another five. We arrived in Manchester at 1 am PEI time and didn't get back to Greenock until about 8 PEI. All this without Scott sleeping a wink. He was tired.

Case Canada: Closed.

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