Finally!!! On the journey from Edmunston to St. George, The Axe appeared. And let me tell you – that was one heck of an axe. It was totally unexpected and I was taken by surprise. Let me tell you how it happened……
We woke in the morning knowing that we had only a short trip ahead of us that day. We needed to be in St. Stephen in the afternoon so that Honour could sign the papers that made her a homeowner in the Bay of Fundy. By the way – did you know that the Bay of Fundy has the highest tides on earth? Because of the shape of the bay, the tides can be as extreme as 16 m (56 feet) (the height of a 5-storey building). That is extreme extreme. It’s also beautiful on that waterfront. The Rockies are awe-inspiring and make you gasp in wonder. the prairies are impressive in their own flat fashion. Northern Ontario is a wooded wonder with wandering waterways. But the waterfront along the north-eastern North American coast is heavenly. (I reserve the term “paradise” for the Jersey shore.) If I were not determined to live down the shore I would agree with Honour that the only place to be is along the water in north eastern Canada. Of course, I have not experienced winter there. *grin* Yet.
The morning began well. Honour had already gotten the car filled with gas by the time I woke. We asked at the front desk for a nice place for breakfast, a restaurant with sit-down & waiter service. Again, the front desk sent us to the place with “pirate” in the name. We decided perhaps we had MISSED this wonderful restaurant the prior night in the dark and rain and our fatigue, so we drove over there in the bright sunshine. No. There was no fine restaurant. Just the same fast food convenience we’d found the night before We obviously had a different idea of “nice”. We got back on the highway and figured we’d pull off at the first exit that indicated there was food, and we’d hope for the best.
We exited at St. Leonard. As we came off the ramp, we saw a HUGE sign welcoming artists. (I’d have a better picture but I was driving and you-know-who doesn’t like to take pictures. And when we left you-know-who wouldn’t slow down so *I* could take a good picture. There was NO ONE behind us!!!) That coming weekend was Le Rendez-Vous Des Artistes 2017 – a yearly gathering of hundreds of artists and crafters from around the world. We could see them still building stages and saw the poles flying international flags. The local children had gotten into the act and had painted large billboards all along the main entry way to the town. They had their names painted on the signs. The signs were great. It was an absolutely perfect trip moment: clear bright sky, the happy signs, the neat homes on the main street. We pulled into a very nice restaurant where we had a sit-down meal with good food and lovely waitstaff. It was a great start to the morning and we got back on the road in high spirits.
We were driving along the St John river on our way to St Stephen. The GPS was refusing to cooperate again. No matter how I entered the address for the lawyer, Gypsy refused to find it. It was quite annoying. We didn’t really NEED her, however, as we knew all we had to do was stay on Rt 2 (trans Canada highway) until we hit St. Stephen. Again I have dozens and dozens of water-hills-trees-sky. And of course moose signs. We saw a sign for Nackawic. Nackawic is a lovely little town along the St John. It was originally named Otis, and was built so those forced to relocate as the result of the Mactaquac Dam being constructed would have a place to reside. There is a beach along the St John (I saw 2 houseboats), a lovely community playground, a town center and ….. THE WORLD’S LARGEST AXE!!!!! WHY is there the world’s largest axe?? Citing the Tourism New Brunswick website: Forestry is the lifeblood of this “model town,” which was named Forestry Capital of Canada in 1991. To commemorate that honour, the town commissioned the World’s Largest Axe (seven tonnes), which stands proudly on the waterfront.
You KNOW we had to stop and see the world’s largest axe. *grin* How could we NOT??? We pulled off the highway and followed the signs. We couldn’t find it. How silly is THAT???? Surely there would be signs, or just the axe itself. We were heading out of town wondering where it was when my phone rang. It was our Travel Agent in the Sky saying “oh no!!! You’ve gone past it – you needed to stop and see The World’s Largest Axe!!” I explained that we were TRYING to find it but somehow we missed it. So our TAITS began to direct us, using 2 different online maps to track us and describe road turns. We pulled into the town center parking lot so Honour could take care of some banking while I set out on foot to find this elusive axe.
I was focused on the water, watching the houseboats with the TAITS saying you’re right by it. I cleared the recreation building and finally looked away from the water and – OH EM GEE!!!! THERE IT WAS!!!! THE WORLD’S LARGEST AXE!!!! *laughing* I don’t really understand how we missed it although I do know how. We were so focused on the road signs and the road as we pulled into town, and on things close to the road (looking for the sign), that we never saw The Axe. We even remarked on the tennis courts which are just in front of the axe when viewed from the road. 🙂 Of course I took pictures. Our detour for the axe added an extra hour to the trip, but we knew the lawyer would understand (Honour had already informed her that my friends and family had decided perhaps Honour was really packing an axe on this trip). We got back in the car, on the road, over the pretty green bridge over the St John and back to Rt 2.
We made it to St Stephen an hour later than we’d intended, but as Honour said – hey – we drove across country to be here now, an hour late is not that bad. And of course we WOULD have made without The Axe. But there was NO WAY we wouldn’t see The Axe. On the way to St Stephen we FINALLY had an occurrence of an animla crossing the road. It was not, however, a moose, nor was it a raging elk. It was a young deer, ambling across the road as we all waited. Given that I have deer wandering about in my front yard these days, I admit I was not all that impressed. Honour signed the papers and as we chatted with the lawyer, the sellers came in as well. They were sisters (inheritance from their mother who had passed away) and it turns out that they still live on the island as well. They and Honour had a great time sharing information and getting acquainted. They were very lovely and did apologize many times for the mess that the house was in. Honour had been saying all along that she didn’t care if there was a “portal to Hell” in the basement – she wanted HER house (the cats already had decided that the CAR was a portal to hell so how much worse could a stationary house be?)
From St Stephen we drove to St Andrews, a lovely shore town. In fact, St Andrews is Canada’s FIRST seaside resort community. It reminded me a lot of Cape May, NJ but of course with it’s own personality. Did you notice that in the one painting it is a view of the street that appears in the photo? We had something to eat and drink while we looked at the bay. The tide must have been out because there was a LOT of mud between us and the water. 🙂 We were both very excited. Honour kept saying “I own a house.” And I was by the water and outdoors which is where I always long to be. Okay, maybe not so much in the winter, but always by the water. 🙂
Finally we decided to head to St George, which is where we were stopping for the evening, before we headed out again the next morning to finally reach the island and the house. There is apparently a Lake Utopia monster but, alas, that did not have the same pull as the World’s Largest Axe and we will have to hunt for the monster another time. We checked in at a very nice motel and headed into town to get some dinner. Again, dinner in a local pub where we ate outside, watching the sun set over the hills in the west, as we gazed at the Magaguadavic River nearby. Tomorrow – The Island!!!!