Gray and overcast. A quiet day. We eat an uninspired breakfast at Windows, the big restaurant. They’re afraid to burn the bagels and the bacon. Everyone is afraid to burn the bagels and the bacon. I like them charred. The croissants don’t look like they’re worth the calories, so I pass. Londa, from the Dominican Republic, is a pleasant waitress. The coffee was better, yesterday.
We register for 4 days of tours and then it’s lunch time, and they have run out of spacing for couples dining. We end up sharing a table with Mary, David, Karen and Ginny, all from…. Are you ready for this…. Lincoln, Nebraska! And they were so very nice! Karen works for the Engineering School at the university, and Ginny, a nurse, runs a community college nursing program. We talked about health care and the Midwest as a great place to raise children, and the disparity in the cost of homes on the West Coast. It was a very nice lunch.
We had a wonderful dinner at the Shogun Restaurant with sushi and sashimi. We finished the night watching the NCL Broadway Review with Singers and Dancers
Day 3, Tuesday – Halifax, Nova Scotia
The sky is gray as we enter the harbor at Halifax, the second largest natural harbor in the world, second only to Sydney, Australia. We dock at the famous Pier 21 and I wonder just where my grandfather entered Canada. He died before I was three years old, and I never really got a good enough history from my grandmother or my mother. They did mention St. Johns and Halifax before they moved to Montreal, where my mother was born. I could imagine the young John Rosenberg arriving in Halifax, under gray skies, starting a new life in Canada.
A bus picks us up and we’re off to the Public Gardens, driving through the city and past a very colorful building.
The Public Gardens are lovely. Somehow, so far north, and in October, it seems odd to see so many flowers in bloom. Yet, the purpose of the cruise, to see the autumn foliage, has been frustrated by the unseasonably warm weather, so we see less color and lots of green, in this formal park, seemingly isolated and surrounded by the city.
At last, color!
Halifax is famous for its connection to H.M.S. Titanic, and, in a little known project, worthy of Roswell, apparently to provide an answer to a certain jingoist minority that has called for the capacity for massive retaliation should timber tariffs remain in place, the Canadian Navy, in absolute secrecy, has raised a relic from the ocean floor and restored it to its former majesty, awaiting the order to return to service. I wouldn’t have believed it if I hadn’t managed to sneak a spy shot under the very eyes of our minder, a retired sergeant in the Canadian Black Watch regiment.
Not exactly in the class of the spy photo of the Tirpitz in a Norwegian fjord, this finding was just as unexpected, yet provoked no interest from the U.S. Navy. Perhaps, Admiral Yamamoto would have been interested.
We departed from the Public Gardens and went to Privateer’s Wharf, a charming shopping area with a bookstore where I purchased a Celtic CD, and a book by a U-boat engineering officer who was aboard the submarine that sank the last Canadian ship lost in World War II. After 2 years as a prisoner of war, he decided to become a Canadian, and after schooling he has played some role in designing solutions to Toronto’s traffic problems.
Here’s our minder-tour guide:
We returned to the ship and to a fitting sendoff from R.C.M.P. Pipe and Drum band, regretting that time did not permit a visit with lasergirl