Everyone travels different. Most seem to travel from one destination to the next destination, without ever noticing what they missed. It’s how I have always travelled, until this little odyssey. Driving through the Atlantic provinces of Canada has been at a slow ‘mosey.’ We’ve stopped to smell so many roses that my allergies are acting up.
The scenery has been stunning. Rolling hills that you drive through on winding roads. Rounding a bend to expose the sea coast and breath-taking vistas. As Honey says, nature is pretty awesome. I’m glad I’ve taken some of the time I have remaining, to see it and experience it. The pace has that retired senior vibe happening.
Mother Nature has also thrown me a bone with only two days of rain in fifteen days of travel. As much as I always feel I’m at odds with her, she’s been pretty generous to me on this trip. She’s given me stunning scenery and fair weather for our road trip. So, kudos to her, thanks for your kindness.
I’m sitting on a deck, overlooking the cove at Ingonish, Nova Scotia. The water is incredibly calm, glass like, in the cove. We have managed to stay in some terrific little Inns and motels on our travels. In fact, the worst hotel we’ve stayed in was a major chain affiliate. The rest have been places with catchy names like Knotty Pines Motel, Four Winds Hotel and West Coast Lighthouse Inn. Not the normal kind of place I would stay at, but like The Playa, they have turned out to be jewels, hidden in the shadows.
From an expense standpoint, these little Inns are the same price as the Big Box Hotels, and frequently even less expensive. The best part is they give you something more than just clean rooms (thank COVID for that) and a bed to sleep on, they give you a sense of region. Their lobby’s have kitschy knick-knacks scattered about, and the rooms have pictures painted by local artists adorning the wall. Authentic to the area I am in, it adds to my experience in ways that the sterile, generic lobbies and rooms of massive chains don’t. Just like The Playa, these places are locally owned and operated and the people exude local flavour. My interactions have been brief, but have been fun.
There is also something else these places share in common with The Playa, the rising of the sun and the beginning of a new day has the same start. The crowing of a rooster! It doesn’t matter if I’m sitting at home, in the Atlantic provinces of Canada, or on a Caribbean Island, the first sounds that disturbs the silence of the night, is the obnoxious squawk of a damn chicken!! What’s the deal?? Are they some universal alarm clock for the entire world?!!! Why couldn’t a loon be the sound of day’s beginning?!!? I know they are the sound of day’s end, but couldn’t they do both?? Is there a bird-union by-law?!!? Roosters sound like a digital alarm clock!! I’m retired!! I don’t have to ‘get at it’ today, or any day for that matter!! Why does nature have to use the rooster??!! I think I’ll start a petition, requiring farmers to muzzle their roosters overnight!
Aside from the fowl sounds in the morning. The places we have stayed have been great places to wake up in the morning at. The weather, the quiet surroundings, sipping a cup of coffee and smoking cigarettes, on rooms deck. Sure, I can’t smoke inside the premises but that was expected and we booked around it as best we could. I did spend two days smoking in an alley in Quebec City, but I was in the old part of the city and doing that seemed to fit the surroundings. The only thing missing to complete the picture would have been a thin fog rolling over the cobblestone streets.
At the half-way point of our road trip, I have experienced many moments of peace and bliss. The same kind of contentment I experience at The Playa, as I sit and listen to the day begin. It makes me both happy and sad at the same time.