Today we leave Nova Scotia and ferry over to Prince Edward Island. We were up early because we had a long ride to get to the ferry. The weather was looking a little dicey as we took off.
The ferry over to PEI was a little smaller than the one we took from New Brunswick. What was really funny to us was that we got to walk on the ferry on the same ramp as the cars, trucks and bikes. It was only going to be an hour and a quarter trip and we would arrive after lunch so we decided to eat on board. The lunch fare was pretty predictable, pizza, hamburgers, pre-packaged sandwiches, chips and drinks.
A few days ago we saw a sign on an A&W advertising a dish called ‘Poutine’. We looked it up on the Internet to see what it was and discovered it was French fries, cheese curd and gravy. Barry decided to order it on board but his ‘Poutine’ did not have cheese curd but shredded cheese. Barry liked it.
Once we arrived we ran down stairs again so we could capture the guys on film coming off the ferry on their bikes. When we arrived it was raining. So the first order of business was to get our rain suits on before taking off.
Our first destination was going to be Charlottetown, PEI’s capitol city. On the way we passed miles and miles of rolling hills of beautiful farms. The farmland in PEI reminded me of the beautiful farms in Lancaster, Pennsylvania. They reminded Char of the beautiful farms in Middleburg, Virginia. We saw a great deal of potato crops, soybean and corn along the road. I’m sure there was more but at the speed we were traveling it all became a blur.
As we were driving along all of a sudden shouted into my helmet’s microphone, “Marshmallows”. I was looking to the right so did not see what he was talking about. I turned to the left and all I could see across the field were very large rolled bales of hay. The bales were wrapped in opaque white plastic and really did look like giant marshmallows. Very funny!
We arrived in Charlottetown around two-thirty in a gentle drizzle. We decided that we would walk around for a little while to get the flavor of the city. There was a small street fair going on. I was surprised that on a Sunday afternoon in the middle of what should be the island’s high season there weren’t more people milling about. Most of the booths on the sidewalks were offering various ethnic foods, Iranian, Turkish, Canadian and others. Lana and Char wanted to step into the Anne of Green Gables store to look around. They both purchased books for
Kristine and I talked about my finding a cookbook from the provinces brining it back and then cooking them and blogging about them. I found such a book called, Guidebook & Cookbook Maritime Flavours by Elaine Elliot & Virginia Lee. However, it was fairly large and heavy so I ran out quickly to ask Randy if it would be possible for me to bring it home on the bike. He said, “No”. I ran back into the store and quickly to see if the book was distributed in the states so I could order it back home. It was so I was happy.
As I was walking around the town I remember thinking there didn’t seem to be a sense of style to the town. It was as though some decided to put up a building and did whatever seemed comfortable to he/she without a general architectural consensus of what the town should look like. It seemed very plain and ordinary to me which is not a criticism just an observation. One of the fun sites we saw was the Hippopatabus a double-decker tour bus with the logo, “Hop on, Hop off”. We all thought about that for a while and decided that a Kangaroo would be a better animal as they do indeed hop.
Char and I talked about the architecture being so different in the provinces. The homes that we saw were lovely, small and compact. As Char mentioned, “The architecture and way of living is very interesting. Their homes are more function than form”. We also noted that a lot of the homes here have much smaller windows and in most cases are triple-paned.
On our way out of town Lana purchased some beer and cheese so we could go to our hotel and have happy hour. It was really funny standing on the side of the road opening up a twelve pack of beer and finding every crevice we could find in her trailer to put the glass beer bottles.
It was still drizzling as we took off so we decided not to go to the Anne of Green Gables museum. The men had no interest and the women could not reach a consensus so we just went to our hotel. On the way Bob pulled over and said that he would like to go to Cavendish on the northern shore but everyone was tired so we agreed to get up the next morning and go there before heading over to New Brunswick.
As soon as we were unpacked we head to the town of Summerside to have dinner. The group decided it was time to have something different so we decided to go to a Chinese restaurant for dinner. Randy and I really like Chinese so we were very happy. The name of the restaurant was the China Star. The restaurant was lovely with its beautiful Chinese red walls, red and gold brocade seat covers and golden Moon gate entrance to the dining room. However, we had quite a few problems with service, getting the wrong order and expectations and what we ordered being different than we were accustomed to in the states.
The very first problem was our drink order. We all ordered tea for our drink and was expecting the traditional Chinese tea to be brought to our tables. Intead the waitress brought out regular teacups and saucers with tea bags. We all said that we were expecting Chinese tea and teacups. I was very surprised that bagged tea was the first choice. I ordered Kung Pao Chicken, which is usually chicken, vegetables and peanuts in a hot, spicy sauce. This dish was chicken, vegetables and a mild sauce, no peanuts. It was very delicious just not what I was expecting. The same was true with all the other orders. Bob did not even get what he ordered but the choice one line down. He had to send it back. But in the end the food was delicious and we all cleaned our plates.
Tomorrow we head for St. Johns, New Brunswick.