Wednesday, May 30, 2012

The seventeenth luminous thing... today's weather. There was some today, clouds to start at least that's what I saw around 5am when I woke up and peered out my window, clouds evolving into light rain and scattered mist during breakfast and by the time we went out driving it was pouring rain, big steady buckets of rain, a wipers full on sort of rain. Over lunch of lobster stew and beer and a biscuit at the Cackling Hen or Chuckling Chicken or someplace like that the rain slowed again to mist, and we seriously considered a hike along the Red Island trail, the one that begins next to the small white church and runs down to St. Ann's Bay, but we drove around another bend and the mist turned back into buckets of rain and so we gave up the idea. In its place we decided to drive "just up the road" to the Cedar House to get oatcakes and tea biscuits for the drive tomorrow. Getting to Cedar House means driving the eleven miles to the Transcanada highway, and then across the big iron bridge spanning Bras D'Or and up and over Kelly's Mountain. Our minds had conveniently forgotten large chunks of that drive, shortening it up to something reasonable instead of the hour and a half of rough, twisting road it actually is. But, off we went. The rain kept pace with us and began, if anything, to fall harder. It pick-picked against the car windows like sleet and had us checking the temperature in a panic. The road was greasy after a long dry spell and furrowed from years of hard traffic, so water pooled in along the length of the troughs and the car hydroplaned and slid even on the straight parts. And there aren't many straight parts.

We disembarked at the Cedar House in the constant rain and a veil of fog that had moved in off the lake. Stocked up with the oatcakes and biscuits we drove back across the lake and up and down Kelly's Mountain and back along the eleven miles of winding trail to the Inn. Roadsigns in English and Gaelic were blurred by water, the river was one slaty streak beneath the foggy tinfoil sky, all of it drizzled from above with silver water. And even here, on this side of the lake and mountain, fingers of mist curled over the green hills, entwined themselves in the trees, and began to tighten their grip.

The weather today was gorgeous!


Basically, the rain kept us inside today, in both cars and shops. We went to the Gaelic College and found out about clans and poked around at Scottish stuff, and a big group of people came in all chattering away in Gaelic! It was very nice and completely incomprehensible to hear it all around us. We went to John Roberts' leather shop; we'd met him at dinner one night at the Inn, and again the next day when he was out gardening. He told us he used to work at the racetrack in Moncton, fixing harnesses, that one way or another he'd always worked with leather and now he was here, with his own shop, working with it all the time. He opened it after getting a commission to make authentic leather buckets for a movie (with Russell Crowe in it, but as far as I know John Roberts did not punch him in the head and no, I do not know what a fire bucket is) filmed at a fort nearby and everything he makes is beautiful and appears to be made with great love and great care. We also went by the art glass studio where a glassblower had just fired up the oven, meaning he could start blowing glass on Saturday. And then we came back to the Inn and had tea and shortbread and watched the hummingbirds dancing in the rain.

Lobster stew at the clattering chicken, along the Cabot Trail 5.30.12

John Roberts' Leather Works shop 5.30.12

Mist coming over the hills, outside the Inn with lilacs 5.30.12

Good to be back! 5.30.12

Dining room at the Inn in the rainy afternoon light, 5.30.12

Brian the chef (left) and Keith the business manager, fire builder, bar tender, and resident funny man 5.31.12

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