Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Illes Aux Marines

This lovely iles off the harbour of St. Pierre is part of the `patrimony`of the area. This island served to protect St. Pierre`s harbour from storms and as a home for up to 700 inshore fishermen in the late 1890`s. The most fascinating part of the island for me was the laundry - the women all collectively washed their lanudry. Not something I`ve seen in other Atlantic Canadian communities. It appears to be a uniquely Francophone cultural practise. Also interesting was that these Francophone fishermen dried their salt cod direclty on sun heated rocks, whereas in the rest of Newfoundland, the salted cod would be laid on `flakes` or wooden drying racks. Photos to follow...

St. Pierre Hikes

You`ll have to wait for faster uploads, but the hiking here is just great. It is all very much like hiking in the arctic or alpine because there are no trees at all. We were very much enjoying our sunny hike until the storm clouds rolled in. There are no photos of the torrential downpour because Christopher was afraid the camera would suffer a drowning. Before the skies opened we saw lovely alpine and bog plants without any bugs to bother us.

Air St. Pierre

We could have arrived by boat, but decided that air would be the way to go to get to St. Pierre. I think we were right after hearing how rough the crossing was. The enclosed fast ferry catamaran was a vomit comet the day we came. Happily, the flight was calm smooth sailing. Our arrival was uneventful and easy. We flew on an ATR 42 for the first time with Air St. Pierre. We were up, had a beverage and snack, then down. The whole experience was great.

St. John's Street Scapes

Again, the photos must await faster upload speeds, but suffice to say, the heritage branch of the St. John's municipal government is doing a good job as far as I'm concerned. The historic culture of the downtown is very much present. We really enjoyed staying in one of the tiny homes packed into the steep downtown hillsides. We also really liked people's disdain for grey, beige and other blah colours.

Signal Hill, St. John's Newfoundland

Christopher and I hiked up signal hill a few times - well, me only half way twice - but Christopher went the long way around from Old Battery Road. His video is great, and when I get closer to fast upload speeds, I'll put it in.

The view from Signal Hill is unbeatable. One evening after our dinner, we went out for a walk and stumbled upon an arts 'happening' which included a person in the Marconi Tower on Signal Hill (which by the way qualifies for the designator of 001 as the first place from which radio signals were ever sent) sending morse code responses to text messages that people in a down town park were sending. A very cool thing to see. Lots of parents taking their kids out way past their bedtimes to see 'art'.