Monday Morning Musings

Posted on September 11, 2017 under Monday Morning Musings with 4 comments

Paradise Found – Smith Settlement on the # 7 Highway


So much to tell you. So little space.

Let’s start with Peace by Chocolate. They had the grand opening of their new factory on Saturday. It was a perfect September afternoon weather wise. People started to arrive at 1:30 to get a tour of the facility, sample Syrian food , hear some speeches and watch the official ribbon cutting. The crowd was estimated at over 500 people.

I received a message from Tareq early Saturday morning that their Emcee would not be able to make it so I was asked to fill in. It was a great honor and I had a bird’s eye view of the entire proceedings. There was a lot of goodwill and love in evidence all afternoon. The highlight for most of us was the heart wrenching speech from Tareq’s mother, Shannaz. I think that all of the events of the previous years came to a head around this event. Through tear stained eyes, she tried to put into words what this day meant to her and the family. It was very moving and there weren’t many dry eyes.

There will always be naysayers but our Syrian families will add so much to our town, our province and our country.

What if our provincial government banned all recreational travel outside of the province for one year? First of all, they would be defeated in the next election! I’m only joking of course. The more I travel in Nova Scotia, the more I realize that we have one of the most beautiful places on the planet to call home. Those who don’t like winter might disagree. If everyone was forced to travel in the province for a year, it would be a great stimulus to the economy and people would quickly realize that they don’t have to go far or spend large amounts of money to have a first class vacation experience.

I spent a day on the South West coast of Nova Scotia last Friday. The Valley was lovely, as always, with apples aplenty in the orchards. I have never been beyond Digby before and decided to go to Church Point. If you’ve never gone there before, put this on your bucket list. If you get a beautiful day like I did, the scenery is breathtaking. You pass through Belliveau Cove, Grosses Coques, Church Point, Comeauville and Saulnierville.  Trip tip: If you love fresh seafood/ Acadian cuisine, you must go to La Cuisine Robicheau in Saulnierville. You won’t find fish and chips on the menu because they don’t use deep fryers. I sampled their fishcakes and seafood chowder. You simply won’t find any better anywhere.

I spent an hour wandering around the campus of Universite Sainte Anne. What a location for a university, only a few hundred yards from St. Mary’s Bay, an inlet of the Bay of Fundy.

But the main reason for traveling to Church Point was to visit the grave of my good friend Gary Boone. I was in Florida in November of 2013 when Gary passed away. I really liked Gary. He was a straight shooter on and off the golf course. He did so much for recreation in this province. Now finding his grave was another matter. If you thought finding a lost golf ball in Dundee was difficult ( for you golfers out there! ), trying to locate this particular  cemetery in Church Point required patience and several messages back and forth with Kim!

Gary was one of the good guys. Rest in peace, my friend.

The day before traveling to Church Point, I hopped on the boat and went to Charlottetown to see “ Million Dollar Quartet” at the Confederation Center For The Arts. I think I only saw one couple under the age of 65. If you grew up in the era of “ Rock and Roll”, this is a must see. The show depicts a night in Nashville back in the 1950’s when four up and coming stars spent an evening at SUN Studios. And what a foursome: Elvis Presley, Johnny Cash, Jerry Lee Lewis and Carl Perkins. The show lasted 90 minutes ( no intermission ) and the musicianship was amazing.

The last day of my mini vacation took me along the Eastern Shore after overnighting in Halifax. This is another beautiful drive. Where the 107 meets the 7 highway, traffic picked up considerably. Before I could turn around, I realized that I was caught in the snare of the 50 mile yard sale. Luckily I wasn’t in a hurry and I was going slow enough to catch the photograph seen above.

I think I have discovered the bleakest stretch of highway in the province. Exiting Sheet Harbor, I took the 374 cross country to Stellarton. There was a method to my madness. I wanted to stop by and see another dear friend who passed away while I was in India. Fr. Gerry MacInnis lived at the apartments at Sylvan Valley. I got to know him very well during the time my mother lived there. He was a modest priest with a wicked sense of humour and a brilliant bridge player. We shared so many good times together including weekly mass when I’d play my guitar.

Fr. Gerry is now resting under a beautiful tree surrounded by other family members. Requiescat in pace.

Have a great week.

P.S. Glad you liked my “ back to school poem.” Think I’ll throw a few more your way in the future.


Chowder at La Cuisine Robicheau. Simply the best!



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