03 August 1999

Arrival at Englishtown

I woke up at 4 am. Too soon to get up. I woke again and thought it was quarter to 7 and that, if I went back to sleep, I wouldn't wake up at 7. I looked again and it was quarter to 6 so I went back to sleep. Woke at 7 (for real!) and got up.

We had breakfast (cheese on bagels and tea/coffee), broke camp and headed out around 8. Bought gas in Charlottetown (.529/litre) then headed for the Wood Islands ferry. We got there at 9:45, in time for the 10:00 ferry. We had no problem getting on and settled in for the 75 minute ride to Caribou. At Caribou, we took highway 104 to 106 and 105 to Englishtown on Cape Breton.

We checked into the Englishtown Ridge Campground and got a pretty decent site toward the back, surrounded by trees. The front part of this place is much more "urban" than I like...RVs side-by-side (almost within reach-out-and-touch distance); a swimming pool filled with splashing noisy kids; a bar/rec center with the usual blaring TV, yelling kids, blow dryers, etc Bleah.... Back where we're camping, there aren't RVs and there are a lot more trees but the urban-jerks still abound. The people in the spot next to ours seem to feel it's their duty to FILL the campground with the sound of their music. K and I have to shout to each other across our picnic table to be heard. Quiet hours don't start until midnight...this could get interesting...

Tried to call the kayak guy again and got his machine. I left a message and will try again later.

We walked down the steep drive to the highway and mailed some postcards at the post office next door. Then we crossed the road and walked along the shore of St Anne's Bay. The view is incredible! I can see why it was called New Scotland...it certainly looks like any pictures I've ever seen of Scotland.

I found a great piece of driftwood along the shore...it's about the size and shape of a letter-opener and the top looks like a little guy in a boat. Too cool! I also picked up some purple shell pieces that should be gorgeous when polished up.

Just after 5, the sun started to poke holes in the clouds. All day, there have been big cotton-ball clouds everywhere with brief periods of sun. When it's cloudy, it's cool and seems a lot later. When the sun comes out, it's dazzling!

There were some "cobblestone jellies" on this beach too, but the beach here is pretty much cobblestone to begin with so they don't stand out as much. We hiked back up to the campground.

I went back down again later to watch the sky, light, and shadow play on the bay. I sat through a brief shower that started on the far side of the bay and gradually rolled its way to my side of the bay and over me. Without a single person or manmade object in view, it was the most peaceful, relaxing time of the whole trip.

Went back to camp and had supper. Then the camp owner came to tell us that Angelo called. Our kayaking trip is still on!!
As the day is winding down, someone is playing bagpipes in the front part of the campground. They started with Amazing Grace and moved into jigs. The place has completely filled up. The rain showers quiet things down but in between, they rev up again. The people next to us are still playing their music loudly enough that even with earplugs in, I can recognize the songs playing. I hate public campgrounds...