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You asked, we answered! Thanks to our loyal blog followers for submitting questions. Keep them coming. We love to hear from you.
Q: What music are you sick of? What haven’t you heard enough of?
A: We aren’t sick of anything, yet! We pass most of the driving time listening to audio books. We are making our way through the 13-book series The Wheel of Time, by Robert Jordan. Occasionally we listen to the local radio to catch up on the news or check out the local music. Actually, we tried to listen to the radio several times while driving across Newfoundland, but to no avail. There were literally no radio stations (AM or FM) in some of the more remote areas.
Q: Are there any foods you miss?
A: Hmmm, only the yummy Midwestern produce (strawberries, sweet corn, garden fresh tomatoes). We’ve done a really good job of cooking a variety of meals at our campsite.
Q: What do you guys eat? It looks like you’re sampling a lot of local fare, but do you do a lot of cooking at your campsites? What about snacks for the car?
A: Occasionally we eat at restaurants, especially to try all the delicious seafood while we’re on the coast, but most of the time we prepare our own food. Breakfast typically consists of peanut butter with marmalade, nutella & banana, or honey on bread, with chocolate milk if we have it. Sometimes we splurge and make a big breakfast with eggs and sausage or bacon. Lunch is usually a cold meat sandwich – these are easy to make on the go (which we often are) and are relatively cheap. Sometimes we heat up leftovers for lunch. We typically cook every evening. We’ve only grilled burgers once, to my surprise! Sample of meals we’ve prepared: Japanese style ramen noodles, spaghetti, split pea & ham soup, pork & veggie soup, fried rice, fish cakes, and grilled cod. As far as snacks in the car, we’ve taken to eating nuts and dried fruit quite a bit, mainly cashews and raisins. These are convenient to grab while on the road or to pack for a mid-hike snack.
Q: Do you miss yo’ mamas?
A: Yes! And all our friends in Madison. We are having a great time, but I also know how wonderful Madison is this time of year and sometimes wish we were there to join in the fun.
Q: Has it rained a lot? Or remained sunny for you?
A: We have had a fair amount of rain, but also some really nice, sunny days. I thought all of the rain must be typical for spring along the Atlantic coast, but apparently this has been an especially rainy spring. Most rainy days tend to start rainy but clear up midway through the day. Newfoundland in particular seems to have lots of low clouds that fade to blue sky. I think the warmest day we have had so far is 80 degrees, and usually it is in the low-to-mid 60s, so I do miss the Midwestern heat some days! (Thinking of sipping mojitos poolside in Madison…)
Q: Have you seen any nice churches?
A: The best one so far was St. John the Baptist Basilica in St. John’s, Newfoundland. It was massive and opulent. The church near Capitol Hill in DC where we attended mass, and another in Halifax that we popped in to visit were also very beautiful. A few times we missed out on attending mass in some beautiful churches. Once in PEI it turned out that the parish had moved out of their large, historic church and into a smaller building, likely due to shrinking parish size. A similar thing happened in Nova Scotia, where 2 parishes now shared a priest. The historic church where we tried to attend only had mass on Saturday nights, and the Sunday mass was held in a neighboring community. Unfortunately the mass times we found online weren’t updated to reflect this.
Q: One month in (or however long it’s been) are you still looking forward to the remaining 15 months as much as you were?
A: Yes, definitely. Still enjoying the ease of travel in Canada, still a little anxious about travel through Central and South America, still excited.
Q: Are you planning on being in Chicago on November 7? :)
A: It’s unlikely, but we want to check out plane tickets from Mexico. If we can find a deal, we will fly back for your wedding, Jessica!
Q: What has been the most physically beautiful item/area/view that you have encountered so far?
A: Ooooh, good question. I think the most beautiful view for me so far was our first view of Newfoundland, coming into port at Port aux Basques (southwestern side of Newfoundland). The sun was shining over the quaint fishing village, which seemed to be clinging to the rock surface, with not a tree in sight. In the distance we saw the mountains rising up, with patches of snow on them. In general, Newfoundland has had the most stunning scenery, especially when driving along the coast with mountains on one side and the ocean on the other. The view from the top of Cadillac Mountain, in Acadia National Park (Maine), was also stunning. Oh, and our first glimpse of ice bergs here in Newfoundland was pretty neat.
Q: What has been one thing (or more!) that wasn’t planned at all but that you are really, really glad happened in your trip?
A: Stumbling upon the Festival of Small Halls in PEI, where we enjoyed the talents of a local storyteller, fiddler, and accordion player in a cozy venue, and got a shout-out from the festival organizer during the intermission! Others include meeting the mayor of Pictou, NS and him giving us a pin with the town’s crest on it, going for a hike in NS and coming out into a bay where a couple of dozen seals were lounging and playing, and nearly being blown down the mountain in Cape Breton, NS where the winds were pummeling us at 60+ mph.
Q: What event(s) so far will make for the best story 20 years from now?
A: I think the most notable story so far was when we were trying to drive up the mountain in West Virginia in the densest fog either of us had ever seen, as the last bits of daylight were quickly fading away. Then spending 18 hours in our tent because it was pouring down rain, only to find the road down the mountain nearly flooded when we attempted to leave.