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(>Pictures at the bottom!)
After about 45’000 kilometres – yes, correctly read – where we ran some diesel through the engine to experience the vastness of America, we took our first longer break with relatives in Pembroke/Ontario.
No, we weren’t tired of travelling or anything else when we arrived, but the winter in Canada forced us to take this break.
For the first time since our start in Halifax we could lean back a bit and revive our experiences. Certain things became conscious to us only later, other things came to life again only on the basis of the many photos; actually a crazy thing what we did and experienced there so everything.
After the first 9 months on the North American continent we also knew a lot more about our locomotion and already had ideas about the continuation to the far north.
Certain ideas we buried already for a long time, other things were realized here in Pembroke and we definitely separated from a few things.
For example, we will not have any bicycles with us on our onward journey, as we hardly used them. These were rather a burden for us and our jeep. In case of need, there are mostly good bikes in the touristic places or parks that can be rented for little money.
Among other things I could spend the time with my family with small jobs, as for example with the dogs walk (the wife of my cousin owns a dog breeding), shovel snow and of course process maple juice.
So I had the opportunity to learn something about the secret of the buckets on the trees and how the sugary sap of the maple trees is processed. Equipped with snowshoes we went into the forest and the maple trees. Liter by liter, tub by tub, were emptied and carried together. Afterwards several ster of wood went into the throat of the stove, where my uncle boiled the maple juice in a first process. The coronation followed late in the evening at the stove, where the maple syrup was boiled to its 66% sugar content. Tired to death, I sank into a sweet-sugar dream afterwards.
Or how about a new agricultural machine? Near my cousin’s farm on a Saturday afternoon the whole machinery of a farm was sold to new owners and was for me a spectacle of a special kind. The auction manager managed the sale skilfully and with a lot of humour and it was necessary to be careful not to get into the whirlpool of the bidders.
On the other hand, I was surprised at all the things that are offered for sale; in Europe, half of them would probably be taken to the scrap dealer.
Of course a hockey match could not be missing in the repertoire for us visitors to Canada! My cousin invited us to the last home game of the Ottawa Senators. Although the home team was completely destroyed against the Buffalo’s Sabres, the show was show and entertainment was provided for the whole event. While the players chased the puck and scored goals, the audience was kept in a good mood with all sorts of things. The surrounding was a special spectacle for us and the sport on the ice field became almost secondary!
We also received an invitation to the Canada-Dance, where 2 children of my cousin danced together. For us this was an immersion into another show business and for hours dancing performances of all kinds followed. The children and teenagers showed their shows at the highest level and let us sink into dreams, while outside snowflakes were dancing from the sky again.
We could still hide the Easter eggs in the snow and search for them, which was a special challenge with “chicken-coloured” eggs. The warm weather after Easter and the rain brought out the last eggs not found. Finally, so it seemed, it gets warmer and the snow will finally leave its place to the tender young green.
It was high time for us to wash the last laundry, add the supplies and finally get the jeep ready again. We had a very nice and quiet time here in Pembroke with my aunt and uncle. But we can hardly wait to finally be on the road again, especially as we should be in Whitehorse/Yukon on June 2 and the way there – according to American usage – is a good one.
The farewell party was over, the leg of lamb tasted excellent, it should have finally started on the last April Saturday. But the sun didn’t really want to be there for this day and already during breakfast the first snowflakes fell; postponing it again until the next day.
How is that supposed to end?
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