Now it was summer of 2006 when my baby was one year old. This time we wanted to rent a car because we were going to do a big road trip to the east coast. The entry below will be a more detailed one as compared to the rest so far because it was written right after the trip in 2006, so enjoy!
Day 1 and 2:
I started up searching for the car rental company address from where we were supposed to get the car. The address wasn't showing up on the site so i called the customer service..turned out that the location closed down. I was given a number to call and when i called that number i was directed to another number..they told me that we can pick up the car from another location at the same time. When we got to the location it was pouring rain and they didn't had the car we booked and we were upgraded to 2 levels up...which meant more car space but more gas cost as well. Oh well. We left around 10:30 - 11:00 pm because we wanted to travel more distance while my my baby, Z was asleep. The scenery started to get more scenic on highway 20 after the quebec city. When we entered New Brunswick province we took an
exit because we wanted zayan to have some stretching time in a picnic area. We bought some ice-cream which was homemade and was $4.50 per scoop but it was very different and yummy. I got the strawberry one and it had big chunky strawberries and creamy delicious taste. After crossing the scenic Bay of Fundy National Park we stopped at Alma where our motel was located. We finished our first drive in less than 15 hours which was about 17 hours according to mapquest and by adding extra time for Z here and there i was thinking that maybe it will take us 19/20 hours to reach Alma. I asked at the reception if they have airconditioning...so the girl smiled and said you won't need it because of the weather....and in the evening/night time it was so chilly that i was feeling cold in one comforter. On our way to Alma we also stopped at Fredricton.
We left for Hopewell Rocks this morning...when we reached there we had the breakfast at the outside deck overlooking the beautiful bay of fundy. It was very refreshing. Then we went on the trail that leads towards the Flower pot rocks...when we went down...i realized that the shore line colour is not only muddy...but it was actually muddy...and people were walking barefeet on it to get the free pedicure with the mineral rich clay. On the way back we took a shuttle to the parking lot. After that we went to the Bay of Fundy National Park to explore
the park. After the exploration of the park we went back to the Hopewell Rocks park to see the high tide. On our way back we went to the
oldest lighthouse of the province on Route 915. At night i had fish and chips at the local Alma restaurant and also had ice-cream.
Today we planned to proceed to the PEI province but on the way my husband wanted to see the magnetic hill in Moncton....so when we reached Moncton i entered the tourism department to get a local map..The ticket to magnetic hill was $5...its the place where you park your car in neutral and it climbs the hill. We crossed the PEI via confederation bridge and stayed at New Haven near Charlottetown. During the drive we saw farming everywhere including corns and potatoes. In the afternoon evening time we decided to go to prince edward park. So, our first destination was cavendish beach...after that we went to anne of green gables and the historic site..then we went back to the
prince edward park's other side that goes upto rustico and north rustico.
We were able to catch the NFL ferry for 11:00 am that goes to Nova Scotia. While we were on the ferry we tried PEI's famous icecream from Cows (the shop's name). So far, it was the best tasting ice-cream i ever had in my life. When we were having fries and egg salad sandwich it was time to go down to the car...so we just rushed down. From pictou we had to go all the way to cheticamp located in Cape Breton Island. Cheticamp is a small village with all the amenities including bank, many restaurants and accomodations, hospital and whale watching cruises. After checking in the motel somewhere around evening time we went to the Cape Breton Highlands Park. The scenery was great..they had numerous lookouts. At one point we went out of the boundaries of the park to go to Meat Cove....that's when i saw something on the road side from far away distance...i thought it was moose..But then it wasn't moving so i thought that it was someone asking for hitchiking (in that part of canada you do see a lot of people asking for rides)....as we got closer...i told my husband...look look...moose...it wasn't just one of them..but two... One Mama moose and one baby moose...By the time i could take their photograph, they were gone in the bushes. Whenever i expect to see wildlife i don't see them..and when i stop thinking about them..i see them out of no where.
Meat Cove has a camping ground but no parking for day users so we just parked the car on the road and clicked some photographs. On the way back i felt soooooooooo sick. My childhood motion sickness was back. I just wanted to get to the motel and didn't wanted to come back there next day....on the way back..we spotted another moose.. This time i took the photographs from the car but they didn't came out good. Again, the same late evening we spotted another moose...who was standing in the bushes and wasn't going away so my husband clicked some videos and photographs of the moose finally..So, in one day we saw 4 moose when they are so rare to spot. While we were coming back from the park we clicked few more photographs because i knew i wasn't coming back here next day.
We decided to go to Sydney, Louiseburg and Baddeck today. I really wanted to see the fortress of Louiseburg and the old culture they display there. On the way to Louiseburg we went through Sydney...There was a big line up on the counter to purchase tickets. A bus was going to take us to the fortress. The fortress experience really made my day..we saw people dressed up in british and french army clothes..we saw few marches and experienced the old lifestyle. On the way back we stopped at the Alexander Graham Bell's historic site in Baddeck. When we reached back in Cheticamp i really wanted to experience the Acadian taste....so i took out fish and mashed potato and fish chowder from a restaurant...and in that restaurant the servers were dressed up in old style clothing. When they say that their food is different and tasty...they sure say it right..because the food was sooooooooo yummy.
Our journey back to toronto started....we crossed the Cape Breton and then main land Nova Scotia and we were in New Brunswick....around late evening when we were approaching edmunston....the car started making very scary sounds and engine light was on...we were stranded on the highway....and when you need help...the cell phone battery is never charged....Ah...Who could imagine that a new car that was driven only 3000 km at the start of the trip could broke down. Since the trip started i had a feeling that we'll be staying at Edmunston...and my husband had the feeling that car will broke down...so he got all the roadside assistance information from the rental company. Yeah, so we parked the car on the curb...and started driving it at below 10 or less km/hr....after 6 km we finally saw an exit...parked the car at a gas station and called the roadside assistance from a local phone booth...we were told that the rental company is not around that area so we should call the ford roadside assistance..They told us that the tow truck will be there in one hour...so i was going to walk to the hotel and check-in. But the tow truck guy was there in less than 10 minutes...then he called a taxi which was actually a van...They were speaking french amongst themselves...Now we had to rush and put everything in the van...imagine the chaos...the toys..the clothes..the bags and tons of stuff.
The van guy was an old guy...he was going to take us to the main edmunston but he said that they are having some festival in the city these days so the hotels everywhere are booked so lets check this hotel across the street...they had one room upstairs but had no elevator....so all the stuff had to be transported manually..Both of us...were still worried about what was going to happen tomorrow. The hotel was gorgeous from inside and the esthetics and interior sense was just great...too bad that i didn't click any photographs there because of all the panic. So, my husband called back the roadside assistance of the rental and told them to arrange something...finally they agreed that they will send a car from fredricton next morning and it will be there at 10:00 am.
Day 8 and 9:
Day 8 I had their free breakfast in the lower lounge. Then we packed up everything and started waiting for the car..After 10:00 am we started to get worried because we had to leave the room at 11:00 am and there was no signs of the car....so we called the rental again....and we were told that the tow truck guy with the car left early morning at 6:00 am from fredricton and should be there any minute. We informed the front desk about the tow truck and the front desk attendants were really nice. We were told that we can stay even past 11:00 am until the car arrives. The tow truck guy came around 10:50 am and told us that he had to get something fixed for his truck on the way to here...that's why he got a bit late. At this point, our anxiety level went down a bit...now we were just worried about the return of the car and if they were going to charge us any extra money. Around 10:00 pm we were back in our city...our home sweet home...took some popeyes chicken on the way to home.
Day 9 Finally, took the car back...nothing got charged extra...infact...our bill got reduced by $50....($200 for the whole trip) so that was good. Finally, our trip is over. These memories of adventure, fun, serenity, panic and choas will always make me smile whenever i'll think back