Day 23-26 Halifax, Nova Scotia   Leave a comment

We started our first day of touring in Halifax with a first class motor coach tour. The terrain in Nova Scotia is very different from Gaspe and Prince Edward Island. The Halifax area is very, very rocky.

The Acadian Maple Products store was first on the list.

We learned so much. Did you know a tree giving sap for the syrup is like a human giving blood to a blood drive? A sugar maple tree can produce sap for over 100 years! Each year it must be retapped and each tap hole heals like a sore on our skin. Amazing!

While driving to Peggy’s Cove, we came upon this house completely painted with a mural of Peggy’s Cove to remind people of the romantic folk tale about how the Cove got its name. The artist, Ivan Frazier, grew up in this house. It was his grandmothers.

The tale goes, young Peggy was rescued from a shipwreck, settled in this area and fell in love with one of her rescuers. People would often come to visit this famous “Peggy of the Cove,” and the cove eventually became known as Peggy’s Cove.

We understand that Ivan’s grandmother would be rolling over in her grave if she saw this house now. LOL You can visit his website at: http://peggyofthecove.com/

We ended the last three evenings with either food or dessert. I think we are spoiling ourselves.

We stopped to look at a monumental work of art. Now what would you do with a 30 meter (.01 mile) piece of granite in your backyard? Well in 1977, Artist William deGarthe, age 70, decided to make it a piece of artwork. He chiseled life-size images of hard-working fishermen, their wives, and “Peggy” herself, all watched over by a guardian angel. Unfortunately, he passed away in 1983, leaving his beautiful monument incomplete.

From the monument, we took a walking tour with our guide up to Peggy’s Cove, where we had lunch.

Peggy’s Cove is a picturesque village and lighthouse and is among the most photographed places in Canada. I could spend all day in this town just taking photos. It is an absolutely gorgeous setting. Unfortunately, this year, the fog was in. The photo below top right is from last year. So now we’ve seen Peggy’s cove in its most natural setting–fog.

After lunch, our guide, John, showed us how to put a lobster to sleep. Apparently his dad used to put the lobsters to sleep before cooking them.

We stopped at the Fairview Lawn Cemetery, the burial site for the protestant victims of the Titanic, April 15, 1912. Only 700 out of 2,200 were saved. 328 Titanic victims were recovered. 209 bodies were brought to Halifax, the closest port to the area of the sinking. Most burials were men, since woman and children were saved by being put on life boats, but there are 4 women buried at Fairview. The graves are lined up outlining the bow of a ship.

One headstone marked the grave of an unknown child whose remains were recovered after the disaster, but our guide informed us that in 2010, they discovered the child’s identity. It was the ancestors of the child who recognized the shoes, pictured below,

and requested DNA. They discovered that the child was indeed Sidney Leslie Goodwin, age 2 from Wilshire, England, the youngest of eight who all perished in the disaster.

Luckily the child was buried and the top of the hill where they were able to exhume the body for the DNA testing. Had he been at the bottom, they would have never been able to because there’s an underground stream that has most likely destroyed anything buried.

There is also another child buried that the Mackay-Bennett crew found (now believed to be the son of Alma Palsson who was traveling with her four children). They were so distraught about a child perishing that they themselves paid for the burial. Unfortunately, the survival rate of the first-class men was higher than the third-class women and children.

Then it was on to the beautiful downtown gardens. Boy did we need that time to walk off our lunch.

We also toured through the section of most beautiful homes in Halifax. The “castle house” is our favorite.

Built by the Olands of Oland Brewery and the sponsor of the Bluenose II. It’s the most expensive house in Halifax, worth $5-6 million.

We passed the Governor’s house

and an interesting place called the Toothy Moose

Citadel Hill has served as the site of four different forts since 1749. Each was built during a time of perceived threat. The Citadel we toured was the last to be built and took over 28 years to complete, finished in 1856.

During two world wars, the Citadel served as a sentinel on the home front and a symbol for those departing for overseas. In front of the fortress is a beautiful clock/bell tower.

While visiting the Maritime Museum, we learned more about the Titanic and Halifax disasters. It is sad to learn that the “unsinkable Titanic” sunk because of its poor workmanship. The materials used were of inferior quality and the sections of the hull were not airtight, creating an “old metal ice tray” effect when the water poured in.

Some of the artifacts of the Titanic are displayed at the Museum, such as the fine china pictured below.

As well as a sampling of the fine woodwork of the Titanic.

The Halifax Harbor suffered a horrific disaster on December 6, 1917, when a Belgium steamer (Imo) sliced into the French munitions freighter (Mont Blanc). The Mont Blanc blew up and resulted into an explosion that flattened six square kilometers of the city. The blast created earth tremors and a huge wave ripped ships from their moorings, tossing them about like toys.

More than 25,000 homes were destroyed or seriously damaged. Casualties were horrific – 2,000 killed and 9,000 injured. The clock is frozen in time to the time of that blast.

Somehow the oldest wooden house in Nova Scotia withstood the explosion. The courts decided both ships were at fault.

Included in the museum tour is a tour of the Acadia Ship.

It was launched from England in 1913 and remained in active service until 1969. It operated as a hydrographic research vessel. She spent most of her 56 years charting the Canadian Atlantic Coast and Hudson Bay.

Look at the cute little ship next to this vessel. We saw one of these while on the Southern Exposure Trip. I wonder if it’s the same boat.

Before lunch we visited the NovaScotia Crystal Factory

After lunch we were treated to a 1 ½ hr. ride on the Tall Ship Silva.

Before going back to the campground we toured the Alexander Keith Brewery.

Complete with a sample and entertainment!

Murder at Juice Joint

We ended our time in Halifax with our Murder Mystery Dinner. This is where our guests get creative and that, they did. Before we could even welcome them to Juice Joint, they were already selling what they could and bribing who they could to get money, not to mention all the wonderful appetizers and desserts they brought.

Dina Diva was trying to sell herself to Hal Hollywood and batting her eyelashes at everyone to sell her autograph.

Flora, Notorious Nick’s Ex-wife was one you certainly needed to watch out for. She was the most “street smart” person in the group and ended up with the most cash at the end of the night.

Molly Moll was crushed when Notorious Nick was murdered.

Cindy Butt, the cigarette girl, immediately accused Molly of having Nick murdered.

Ruby red didn’t mince words either when it came to her feelings.

It was fun watching everyone be creative.

Everyone was accusing everyone!

We only had one person guess who the murderer was and believe it or not, he is a retired policeman. No wonder…… Below are the winners for best dressed, the most money collected, the best actress and the super sleuth. WHAT FUN!

Hard to believe we are almost half way through the entire trip and will soon be saying our goodbyes to those who are only doing the first half of the trip.

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Posted July 14, 2015 by carolnbill in Travel

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