Moto: Scotia!

Posted by on Sep 29, 2015 in travels | 5 comments

We did it! Our 1000- plus mile motorcycle trip to Canada is complete. Marty and I haven’t done this much riding since before our daughter was born. Could we do it? Our ambitious route kept us moving every day, and we kept our focus on the road ahead.

Much has been written locally about the Nova Star, a too big ship for too few passengers. As it docked in Portland, we were very eager to board.



How glittery Portland looked in our porthole!


We cruised around the ship, finding various places to settle for awhile before succumbing to a rocking slumber in our neat cabin. Upon arrival in Yarmouth, Nova Scotia in the morning, we found a place for breakfast and headed straight to Middle East Pubnico, to the d’Entremont cabin I sketched on our last visit in 2013. Marty framed the sketchbook for the recent Continuing Studies Exhibit at Maine College of Art.

Timing was perfect, as it began pouring as we rolled up. It’s one of the coziest places to hear rain on the roof. An alder wood fire in the stove adds to the glow.

Long talks in the evening and sketching in the morning renewed our energies. Here’s my drawing of the shy Pi.


The rain cleared the next day and we headed to Le Village Historique Acadien, an early 1900’s Acadian village overlooking Pubnico Harbour. Nicole wanted us to meet the new calf.

The blacksmith forged two nails for us, chatting away about the history of his craft.

We visited the shanty where a cousin of Nicole’s (she is related somehow to just about everyone in Pubnico) showed us the early methods of catching lobsters.

Nicole gathered fallen apples to feed the ravenous pigs.

Later we feasted on king crabs caught by her neighbor, Terry Cunningham, as well as fruit pies baked by his wife, April, all so delicious under a starry sky in their backyard.

On Sunday we went to the East Pubnico Community Picnic, where Marty tried his lumberjack skills at axe-throwing.


A big highlight was the apple pie contest, which April Cunningham has won in the past. It was tricky deciding from just a small morsel.

We picked B, and learned later, YES, April WON. Look at this mammoth trophy carved in wood by the local champion woodcarver. Congratulations, April!


We made our way out to the Pubnico Lighthouse before heading to the Southern Shore.


Our next stop was Mahone Bay, where we stayed at this lovely B & B, and were greeted by the resident “Ambassadog” Mirah.

Dinner was just a short walk nearby to Mateus Bistro, with a local duo playing music a few feet from our table. We met a couple from Virginia in the morning while enjoying an amazing breakfast and chatting with the gracious innkeepers, Scott and Elke Sager. Fortified, we rode on through Halifax to the Eastern Shore. Whenever possible, we take the smaller roads, where things like folk art and stunning churches bring us to a halt.



We found Anke’s B & B in Sheet Harbor, cozy and familial with two dogs greeting us as we rode up into the yard. We walked back into town for dinner at the Fairwinds, glad that the Oods were nowhere to be seen.


Anke’s rooster woke us up in the morning, and we had fresh eggs for breakfast with a sunny view.

The road to Caribou was long and patchy with potholes. This remote lily pond was a good spot to shake out my rattled bones.


We made it to the Prince Edward Island ferry just in time for the 1 PM sailing. Guess what? You don’t even need a ticket! Marty is liking the free ride concept.

On every ferry, we were lined up with other motorcycles and often got to board before the trucks, an unexpected perk of two-wheels.

Stay tuned for the PEI tales up next!


  1. Ah, sweet, sweet memories–douce, douce mémoires. merci.

    • Thanks to such wonderful hosts, it was truly a memorable visit! Merci beaucoup!

  2. I am so proud to be mentioned in this blog post 😊. Sounds like you had an amazing ride . We enjoyed your company very much. And thanks again for voting for my pie . Ha ha !

  3. What a lovely journey you have taken us on in this luscious blog! Thanks for sharing so well. Looks like it was delightful at every turn! More, please.

  4. Hi Jamie,

    We took the Nova Star to Nova Scotia last year. Your story and pictures bring back some good times. We went to Cape Breton and stayed for a music festival there. There are some excellent musicians in Nova Scotia! Next time, I’ll try to make a blog about it. So much fun!

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