Friday, May 02, 2008

Groundhog day in Jenn's world

It has been a long few days.

Today I back tracked a little and headed for Manitoulin Island at the north east of Lake Huron. It is the biggest fresh water island in the world.

But the real newsflash is that I saw a groundhog today!! I thought it was a porcupine until I described it to a nice man and his wife this evening. He said definitely a groundhog. So I feel very lucky... does that mean that winter is over now? So why is it so cold here then?? If I were him, I'd hibernate a bit longer.

The man told me that his wife spotted a creature the other day and called out 'there's a squirrel - heck it's really big'. She assumed that eastern squirrels were bigger then the ones they have in Vancouver. Her husband looked over and said it was a groundhog. I think it is time for her to get glasses!!

Unfortunately he ran very fast for a stubby little thing and this is the only view I got. As I headed back to the car, I noticed in my haste I had left it parked in the middle of the narrow road, on a corner, with my door open... Hmmm, I see a strategy meeting being held tonight to plan the next emergency stop that I may have to do! Luckily I was the only one on that road at that point in time - in fact possibly the only person on that road this week!

Thursday, May 01, 2008

And then it went bad...

So my morning was great. I got back to the motel to have a shower and check out.

I handed over my credit card and it was declined. So it was tried again. Declined. Hmph! So I paid in cash and seethed and scorned at the bank for stopping the second card in as many days!

When I phoned the bank I discovered they had cause to stop my card as it was being used in New York yesterday while I was driving in Ontario.

I am now traveling Ontario with a few dollars in my pocket and an old credit card from NZ that I hope will not be stopped. At least tonight is paid for and I have a full tank of gas. And a nice mummy who would love to give me money (watch me as I flutter my eyelashes and look very sweet).

I saw some beautiful things I really wanted to stop and photograph but the roads are so difficult to stop on so I've missed a few interesting things. A beautiful white wooden church with a red roof and steeple reflected in a lake - on a dual carriageway that I couldn't have stopped on at all. A bird - size of large owl but maybe a hawk of some sort - on a fence post. Nice light on lakes and swamps etc.

C'est la vie, at least there will be less photos to sort when I get home.

Moose Poos(e)

Yesterday I saw the moose and couldn't get the photo. Today I found the poo and I could have taken my time over getting the perfect photo if I had of wanted to. I chose not to spend too much time over taking a photo of poo... but I did feel good about having a choice this time.

I got up at 6.45am and drove to Eau Claire Gorge to have a look at a Canadian style gorge. It wasn't what I expected at all. In fact it was quite boring. Spectacular but not beautiful. I did like the wee picture of the person carrying his/her kayak though. And I was very pleased that they had that nice sign there as the water got very very rough a little further on. Almost as bumpy as the rapids below Niagara Falls, but narrower.

While wandering on the 30 minute walk in the nice woody woods, I suddenly realised I was in Canada, in the woods, alone. And it quickly dawned on me that bears live in the woods and I went back through all my years of TV and movie watching trying very hard to remember just what it is I am supposed to do in the event of meeting a large hairy local. And no matter how deep I delved into my memory bank of reality shows, I could not form a plan. Am I supposed to play dead? Run? (I think the odds are very poor for me on this one). Look at it, yell at it, cry, shake my fist, offer it a toffee...?

So I decided I would rather meet a moose as I could hide from a moose up a tree (a really long way up a tree), but not a bear.

Wednesday, April 30, 2008

So a bit of a background then...

I have been wanting to see a moose in it's own environment for a very long time.

When we went to Sun Valley earlier this year, my clients saw a moose while out driving one day and this was a run down of the conversation...

ME: I've heard that people see the odd moose around here
CLIENT: Yeah, we saw one yesterday (showing absolutely no emotion of any sort)
ME: Where??!!
CLIENT: While we were out driving, it was by the road
ME: You saw a moose??!!
CLIENT: When are the boys due for a feed?
ME: You really saw a moose??!!
CLIENT: Is there any spare toilet paper downstairs?
ME: What road? You saw a moose??!!
CLIENT: Excuse me while I watch this paint dry....

Well, OK so the last bit didn't really happen although it may well have given the chance.

I even suffered the Toronto Zoo last year so I could see a moose in captivity. Unfortunately it was hiding that day. I have several photos of moose that I found stuffed and mounted on various walls around Ontario.

But today I saw a fair dinkum real moose eating grass on the side of the road, but of course have no photo of this one as I was driving.

I'm not sure anything else of any importance happened today. (Did I mention I saw a moose?)

I drove from Toronto to North Bay - which just happens to be the home of the Dionne Quints! What a fluke! But it appears the museum is closed at this time of the year.

But it doesn't matter any more because I saw a moose.