whoa. lemme get this straight, its a saturday AND the sun is out AND the wind is minimal? let me get my shoes on...
dave and i decided on another local drive that we hadnt yet gotten around to today. this time we headed west from halifax and arrived in the little village of hubbards. the "main street" is home to a place called the trellis cafe that is funky and filled with local art and tasty food. it also seems to be the place to hang out for locals and people in-the-know. i loved it. we got a spot inside by the windows with sunlight streaming in. i was inspired to order their homemade lemonade. yum. a hint of summertime to come.
(dave at trellis cafe. above his head...a beer sign)
when we arrived, they must have been in between their breakfast and lunch crowd, so we were able to look around and take in the eclectic mix of wall coverings and marvel at the dessert counter by the register. the waitresses were friendly and soon we had ordered our food. dave got his staple lunch: a club sandwich, hold the tomatoes (which almost ALWAYS get forgotten about and arrive in the sandwich anyway), and i got the soup and half sandwich. soup was chicken veggie, with real slow-cooked chicken pieces, and the sandwich was chicken, apples, brie and curried mayo (yeah i ate brie. all the soft cheese in this country is pasteurized to oblivion) on their thick-cut, soft homemade wheat bread. yum!!!
as we were finishing up our meals the place was really filling up. the front porch was bathed in enough direct sun to entice most of the arrivals to sit outside. its mid-march and outdoor seating is a possibility...im liking this. in order to stick around a bit longer, we ordered some dessert. the dessert menu was loaded with tasty items, so, to choose, we asked the waitress what her favorite was. she loved the plain chocolate cake and ensured we wouldnt be disappointed. i also couldnt leave the mysterious apple dumplings on the dessert counter alone and ordered one of those too. we never get two desserts, and our bellies were bursting, but it was worth it. the chocolate cake was great and the apple dumpling was nice. not too sweet and a different kind of apple treat than normal. yum.
after we paid for our hefty meal we wanted to enjoy the sunshine ourselves. near hubbards you can pick up part of the lighthouse driving route. and as it happened, this was part of the route weve missed because its easily skipped over if youre trying to fit in lunenburg and peggys cove areas in one drive. so, as the afternoon temperatures climbed, we took the road less traveled. we passed a tiny docking area with a few fishing boats and an old shed storing nets and traps and anchors. very picturesque. continuing along we passed more tiny villages with a few fishing boats each and a nice little population of homes clustered together by the water.
our first real stop was bayswater beach. just another small sandy beach on the coast, but it was welcome all the same. at this point it was somewhere in the 60s and i was flirting with taking my jacket off. crazy! it was great to be out on the beach, listening to the waves, smelling the air...i was tempted to take off my shoes...but i knew id never be able to get them back on without help. dave did end up being unable to resist though...
back in the car, we continued west and ended up turning off at the village of new harbour on a "no exit" road near the coast to see where it went. it dead ended at a fish processing plant. tasty. but the road to the plant was a nearly deserted strip of rocky coast that was absolutely beautiful. we found a place to nudge our car off onto the shoulder and explore. we walked out on the rocks and looked up and down the empty coast, spied some tiny offshore islands, and sat down to get warmed by the sun. the rocks were big enough here that waves were breaking on them. such a peaceful place.
the rest of our drive route was nice but definitely getting more and more touristy. the end of this part connected to the road to chester which we have visited and is very close to the popular mahone bay/lunenburg areas. since we had done that part before, we headed back toward halifax. we buzzed through hubbards again and drove the road parallel to the highway, again just to see what we'd been missing. our reward was to find another great spot that we would have totally missed otherwise.
in upper tantallon (apparently pronounced "tan [distinct pause] talon") we stopped at the bike and bean cafe. there are many unused railways in nova scotia, and some communities have decided to rip up their rails and turn them into trails. the main idea is for the usage of bikes, but people also walk and run on them too. the bike and bean cafe is actually housed in a tiny train station along the rail/trail system. the place was teeming with bikes and people. what a great concept! and it was interesting to see the wide population of users: fit middle-aged men in spandex (every bike trail has to have a few), families, teenagers, older couples.
we decided to stop at the cafe and sit on their deck to absorb the last of the afternoon rays (the day eventually hit 70 degrees!!). we split a veggie panini and berry scone. we were pretty proud of all the things we had randomly seen today. and we'd had remarkable weather to boot! cant ask for anything better to lift the spirits. i can withstand a few more grey/rainy/windy days now that ive been recharged. in fact, grey and cooler might not be a bad thing since warmer weather than this would make me want to put the capri pants on, and being unable to bend down and accurately shave the legs would just make me more frustrated than happy.