Day 151: September 12 – St. John’s
Today I walked the 4.5km from my hotel to the downtown core and spent some time at the main square reading on the historical significance of the fishing industry in Newfoundland, the events that have taken place in the past at the square in St. John’s, the devastating fires they have had in the past (the last one that burned a large part of the city was in 1892) and their beloved dogs the Newfoundland dog and Labrador.
After learning more about the city and province I headed to a bike shop that I had called earlier in the morning to pick up a bike box. I was pretty relieved that they had bike boxes available so had absolutely no problem paying the $10 they charged. I then drudged the 5km from the bike shop to my hotel carrying an empty cardboard box while Dash occasionally getting tired of trying to dodge me and the bike box would dig her heels in and refuse to walk. It’s odd how heavy an empty cardboard and a 10lb dog can begin to feel like 50lb!
Getting back to the hotel I had a quick shower, short nap and then called a cab to head back downtown to meet Emilie for dinner and a drink at the Yellow Brewery. While in the cab I commented how I liked all the colorful buildings he told me that back in the 70’s the city found that it was too drab and dreary so they thought they would cheer things up by revitalizing the city with color. He also mentioned that they keep building the homes in wood so that they can burn down in a great fire every 100 years or so (his words, not mine!).
After dinner and a couple pints, Emilie and I headed to Christians on George St. to register for being screeched in. Christians was recommended to us from our waitress at the Yellow Brewery. The screeching in process wasn’t going to start until 11:30, so we had a few drinks at the bar while we got to know Mike the bartender. Just before 11:30 Mike gave Emilie and I a heads up that we were not well positioned for a good view of the screeching in process. He told us which area of the bar we should go to and gave us the queue of when to go. It’s good to get to know the bartender! Our screeching in process was about 30min long and was led by a man dressed in fishing gear with a paddle (actually, I watched The Amazing Race Canada the other day when they were in St. John’s and I’m almost positive that the guy I was screeched in by was the same guy who screeched in the Amazing Race Canada contestants. Once I get the pictures updated you can judge for yourself!). After kissing the cod and drinking the shot of screech we were all given very official certificates. By about 1am I had to tap out so I hailed a cab and headed back to the hotel were I immediately fell asleep.
Day 152: September 13 – St. John’s
After an incredibly slow morning I eventually dragged myself out of the hotel and walked the 5km to Signal Hill. The views from here are phenomenal! I’ll post pictures eventually – I promise! I spent about an hour walking some of the trails at Signal Hill and some time just hanging out and staring at the Atlantic. Still hard to believe how far I have travelled on my bike this summer!
When I got back to the hotel I spent a couple hours dis-assembling my bike and packing it, as well as any other gear I could fit, into the bike box. I then used a good half a roll of duct tape to ensure the box would remain closed on the flight.
Day 153: September 14 – St. John’s to Toronto
Shortly after 10am the pet friendly van cab showed up at my hotel to take me to the airport. The cab driver was super friendly as he flipped all the seats down to fit the bike box in. When we got to the airport he even hauled the bike box into the airport for me! The rest of the check in process was pretty smooth. Dash barked a couple times, but for the most part was well behaved. All of the staff at the airport were quite helpful in making sure all my gear made it where it needed to go and a couple people requested that I take Dash out of her carrier just because they wanted to see her.
Turns out I wasn’t the only person travelling with a dog on this flight, there was another dog in the row right behind me. I was a bit surprised that they would put the dogs so close together, especially when the other dog would give a little bark and Dash would respond with her not so quiet bark. Fortunately both dogs settled down relatively quickly and we had a smooth flight.
At the airport in Toronto I was greeted by Marijana who gave me a ride back to my condo. After getting all my gear into the condo we went out for Burrito Boyz. I am home again.
Anybody wanna go for a bike ride???