Our first stop was Annapolis Royal, to see the tidal power generating station, which I was surprised to see has been in operation since 1984. Although they don’t have tours of the workings of the station on Sundays, they do have cool displays explaining how it works, and other related “green” topics such as wind-power generation and relocation of ospreys that nest on the top of power poles.
From there we drove to Digby, where we knew “Scallop Days” were on, and we hoped to have some famous Digby scallops at the Boardwalk Cafe, a “Where to Eat in Canada” restaurant. It turned out to be closed on Sundays, but we ate down the street where the scallops were excellent and the rest of the food varied from so-so to actively bad. (I resent paying for frozen peas and carrots in a restaurant, especially when they manage to make them practically inedible.). “Scallop Days” had a neat display of sea creatures that we could touch and hold - lobster, crabs, starfish, sand dollars, sea urchins, and sea cucumbers. They were also having a classic car rally, so we walked up and down and looked at them. There was a 1977 VW van (only a year older than ours!) in the show that a guy had recently bought in Dubai and shipped back here. He had a handful of Sharpies and was getting everyone who walked by to sign his bus. (You might just be able to make out Will's signature above, if you click on the picture to make it bigger).
We continued on the north shore of the province, heading in the direction of Yarmouth. Cape St. Mary’s was a necessary stop, immortalized by Stan Rogers, with a lighthouse and great views of the water. Friendly campers from Yarmouth chatted us up and let me play with their puppy (a nine-week old Lab).
In Yarmouth we found that the restaurant we were looking for had closed, but then we found it right next door to the Information Centre. It was closed Sunday (notice a theme?) and we ate sandwiches, then started a walking tour of Yarmouth “sea captain homes and mercantile heritage”. I loved the mixed-up architecture and contrasting colours of the houses, and ignored my mosquito bites and the fading light to get a hundred pictures. A local said hi and chatted for a bit, explaining that lots of houses are just as interesting in town, but aren’t registered and on the tour, because it restricts what people can do to them too much. I took lots of pictures of those houses too.
We’d noticed a Wal-Mart just off the highway into town, so after a stop at Tim Horton’s to use their washrooms and some free Internet we caught from somewhere, we retreated there to sleep for the night.