To North Sydney

Ok, I just let in not one, but two earwigs into my tent. This is something I have managed to avoid up until now, but all of a sudden there’s an earwig party in here. How did I suddenly become so bad at this? I was airing out my clothes and then it got dark and I brought them into my tent without shaking them out first. Hello? Camping 101? Yes, I’m going to need a refresher.
My greatest fear in the world is that there are more. Lurking. Hiding. Waiting for the right moment. And then? An organized attack. I guess if that’s my greatest fear I’ve got a pretty cushy life. But still, super worried about that.
Also, when I found the two intruders I let out a string of expletives so loud that I’m hoping my campsite neighbours are hearing impaired.
Today was a pretty nice ride. There were some giant hills, but I had an ok tail wind, good music, and a straight line route. I did have a small problem at the end of the day when guidebook screwed up some directions. It seems like a certain guidebook author has not actually been to the campsite in the book, but instead googled an address, and then google mapped the incorrect address of said campsite. A certain guidebook author is going to be getting an email from a certain frustrated cyclist. If I had wanted to google directions by the side of the road, I wouldn’t have bought the book. Additionally, this guidebook was supposedly edited by three individuals, which means that four sets of eyes neglected to catch several huge mistakes (“turn west here…”). I guess none of these editors were concerned with fact checking. Or logic.
When I did finally get to the campsite I had a lovely 5 minute shower for 50 cents, and an ok dinner. Tomorrow, I will get seafood. Probably. It’s my last day in Nova Scotia tomorrow, as my ferry for Newfoundland leaves at 5pm.
Oh the ferry, what an ordeal that’s been. Before I started the trip, I had planned on taking the short ferry from Sydney to Port-aux-Basques (approx. 6 hours), and then riding for about a week to reach St. John’s. My father, who sent me weather reports that predicted rain for 3 weeks before I asked him to stop sending them to me, checked up on the ferry and discovered it was fully booked. Having spoken with other cyclists though, I became increasingly certain that walk ons almost always made it on, especially those on bicycles rather than in cars. Still, I did not make a reservation.
Then, after doing some more diligent research (ie chatting with strangers and cyclists), I changed my plans and decided instead to take the long ferry from Sydney to Argentia, Newfoundland (approx. 14-16 hours), and then only have to ride about 130km to St. John’s. Since Newfoundland is known as the Rock, I was keen to not pedal too much in such rugged terrain. Also, I made this decision in northwestern Ontario when I was pretty much done with hills.
But then, I heard from the Wanderers and Dino that the ferry to Argentia had been in a small accident and had hit a rock while making the passage. It would be out of commission indefinitely. But, since I’m in the “let’s wait it out” school, I decided to hold tight until I was closer to Nova Scotia.
Then I heard that the ferry would be fixed and operational by August 26. No, sooner. But, they had already bumped a bunch of reservations, causing many people to cancel their reservation and take the shorter ferry and then a bus the rest of the way. It was at this point that I began to get a bit nervous. I kept getting all of these mixed messages from locals, other cyclists, government sponsored information booths, etc. I finally got a straight story in Nova Scotia, and called to make a booking.
And so, tomorrow, August 28, I will set sail from Sydney, Nova Scotia, to Argentia, Newfoundland. Don’t worry – I’ve heard from a reliable source that they know where that rock is now.

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One thought on “To North Sydney

  1. This is one of your best posts! Glad to hear they now know where the rock is. Happy sailing. (I hope you’ll let the guidebook author know about the errors so he can fix future editions.) P.S. My friend Wayne calls earwigs “Satan’s beard trimmings.”

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