Although I had the pleasure of living and working in Canada for four years (Vancouver) I (like many Canadians) had never made it to Newfoundland which I think is closer to the UK than it is to Vancouver.
It was a gap I very much wanted to fill and it was really nice to stop off at three more obscure parts of the island – populations ranging from 2800 to about (aboot ???)350.
First we visited L Anse Au Meadows. A charming village and the opportunity to get out on the ocean in a fishing vessel looking for whales. Very excited to see two killer whales, humpbacks and dolphins. Almost made me forget how nauseous I was feeling!
Then to Red Bay – a real teeny tiny place that nevertheless has a statue of Leif Erikson the explorer on the dockside.
And then Corner Brook where we followed the footsteps of Captain Cook. Who knew he spent five summers in Newfoundland learning cartography and other useful things before he went on to discover The Antipodes? The wood piles are collected by the locals in anticipation of Winter and the orange boats are called Dorys and used for fishing although the fishing industry is much depleted as the big players take over.
All the people we met (and they really did describe us as “Come from Away” – a musical I will be seeing next month in NYC which tells the true story of the people in Gander who took in 6000 stranded passengers post 9/11 shut down of the skies) were welcoming and kind. At each church the locals had baked for us and rustled up coffee. Truly a special group of people in that part of the world. And the sun does shine there too!