Thursday, June 17, 2010

Feels like home

Hooked up with Sylvain, a couchsurfer from France, to take a roadtrip out to Peggy's Cove and Lunenburg. We spent the car ride out there cross referencing three different maps, realizing how badly we'd forgotten everything we learned in school, discussing french deathcore metal (him) and fifteen minutes trying to explain moose, elk and caribou (me - this is because in european english moose are elk, elk are wapiti or red deer, and caribou are reindeer; he thought caribou was french for moose, this was about fifteen solid minutes of confusion until we found a quarter and a brochure of pictures).

It was drizzling steadily all day, so Peggy's Cove was only crowded with tourists instead of being completely overwhelmed. Even so, there's a reason it's the most iconic and visited site in Nova Scotia. The glacier-sculpted coastline alone is worth the drive - the town itself is basically a model turn of the century fishing village. I'm not sure if any of the boats or traps actually get used or are just there for the tourists to look at. I'm not being disparaging here, it was still neat, although it does feel like a really, really convincing museum exhibit. My favourite part was a giant whale pelvis propped up against a shed, covered in lichen and slowly disintegrating. No one in town knows where it's from or how it got there, it's just 'always been there'. Lunenburg is a still active shipbuilding town - it's where the Bluenose was built, and currently the home of her successor, who is due to be hauled out for refitting. There was a museum with a rumrunning exhibit. I am so proud of my country, you guys.

You know how even when you're at your own house, in the place you've grown up, you can feel homesick? I don't feel like that here. It was the same in Oregon and Vancouver, and Scotland too, a bit...standing on a jumble of boulders, watching the waves, cold and soaked and completely at peace. Maybe everyone has a different kind of landscape that resonates with them - rocks and oceans are mine.