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(>Pictures at the bottom!)
…from Pembroke to Halifax
Yes, that’s how you could name our last stage after Halifax, where our adventure began on 2 July 2018. Actually we had planned our onward journey differently and would be on the way at this time on the west coast of North America. But life learns and so we take it as it comes, day after day.
In Pembroke we took care of everything that includes such a return journey across the “big sea”, booked all things, so that in Halifax we can immediately deposit our car in the harbour without major delay and board the flight to Basel on the same day. Due to this short-term nature there is no turning back on our part, all things were booked very short and a cancellation would be fully at our expense.
Since our jeep was already a few kilometres above the maintenance date and many kilometres ahead of us, we had the most necessary service work carried out. If the engine doesn’t have enough steam, at least the rest of the technical things should do the job properly.
During the collection the “hammer” followed: Not the injection system was defective, as it was diagnosed in Salmon Arm, but a cable broke between the wiring harness and the plug and caused chaos in the vehicle monitoring! Instead of the CA$ 4000 for the replacement of the injection system, half an hour of work was charged for the repair of the broken cable.
At first I didn’t know whether to laugh or scream! The other technical problems were still there, but the engine was back to full power and ready for some crazy adventures off the beaten track.
Now someone should tell me that modern technology would make life easier for us; no, I hate computers and the whole networked world.
Our stay with my family was relatively short this time. And yet, saying goodbye wasn’t easy for us. My uncle still said so casually that we will surely stand on the doorstep again soon. So far we came – with the exception of the northern ones – from all points of the compass and now the approach from the North Pole would really be due. Let us be surprised and take it as it comes, day after day.
In eastern Ontario followed the farewell of my two cousins, who both run a dairy farm, before the first raindrops crossed the border to Québec.
Since we were able to take some of our engine away again and the full torque was available, we again did not choose the direct route, but looked for some back roads through the hilly landscape between the Lorenz River and the northern border of the USA.
The farmland – it could be almost anywhere in France – soon aroused local feelings, followed by long forest crossings. The clouds covered the sun more and more, rain and fresher temperatures accompanied us in an easterly direction.
It was almost a year ago that we crossed the provincial border from Québec to New Brunswick in rain; again this year New Brunswick welcomed us with much rain and sensitive freshness. And like a year ago; the rain was soon displaced by the sun and the drive along the Chaleur Bay was a real feast for the eyes in the evening colors.
The schedule allowed us to jump over the Confederacy Bridge to Prince Eduard Island, which has an eventful and tremendous history behind it. Two great novels made the island famous far beyond its borders, culture is written in capital letters and during the long winter nights it is probably the only thing that keeps people on the island in icy temperatures.
Besides a lot of nature, rocky cliffs of sandstone and thundering sea, one finds an intensive agriculture in the interior of the island, where on gigantic fields probably all potatoes are cultivated, which are squandered in the rest of Canada.
With the ferry we reached Nova Scotia, where – as already mentioned – our journey began a little more than 14 months ago. Somewhat wistfully we drove through the wide landscape in the interior of the peninsula, roamed through many mixed forests before we reached the agglomeration of Halifax and found ourselves again in the everyday hustle and bustle of the business world.
Hurricane “Dorian” welcomed us in the Halifax area and gave us a little thrill. It didn’t hit us in full force like on the Bahamas, but the storm and the 200mm rain (about 8″) accompanied us far into the night. Chantal’s feeling for a cabin was really perfect for this evening and so we could watch the natural spectacle from the terrace. The trees around our dwelling withstood the wind, but elsewhere they fell on the transmission lines; already in the later evening the power supply for the coming night failed.
The last day before our departure we used intensively to prepare our car for the sea journey and repacked our luggage several times. Unbelievable what has accumulated in the last 14 months in new and additional material!
Car washing and even refuelling were still not possible on this day; the nearest village was still without electricity. Even the shops, which were always open, were closed and gave an eerie atmosphere.
Then day X: In the morning both of us were not in a good mood. The premature farewell in North America was a great strain on our mood. Although it is not the end of the journey, there will be a big change. We do not yet know exactly how we will continue from Switzerland; various options are open. But one goal stands: We want to be somewhere in the south before the first big snow!
In Halifax, we picked up the necessary freight documents from the forwarding agent and brought them to the port of Halifax with our jeep. After 2 hours the whole procedure was over and we were “homeless”, our jeep was for the last 14 months our – very tight but beloved – home.
We spent the last hours in the old part of Halifax, before it definitely went out to the airport, from where the plane will bring us back to the old world in a few hours.
The feelings are mixed and yet we are looking forward to the onward journey; this time simply in an easterly direction. We take it as it comes; “day by day”.
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