Wednesday, September 30, 2009

The Provincial 55+ Games

This weekend the Nova Scotia 55+ Games were held in Yarmouth. This event is held biannually and this was the third time the games had taken place. In the off year, there are national games (next year to be held in Brockville, Ontario).

The games consist of lots of different competitions - cerebral like crib, scrabble, crossword puzzles, sudoku, lexicon, moderately active like darts, pool, horseshoes, and vigorous activities like bowling, golf, baseball and hockey. There are opening ceremonies as well as closing ones and a banquet. All participants get a goodie bag (reusable PharmaChoice ones - very useful) filled with info, pins, samples, coupons, a T-shirt for the games, some magnifying devices, health and safety brochures and pill containers (they knew their audience). Event winners got medals and it was strange to hear senior citizens doing rousing cheers for their area of the province. The number of active participants this year was 333, which seems like a good number for a small province - next year they expect 1500-2000 at the national games.

The hotel where the activities were centred was the Rodd Grand on Main Street - 7 floors, restaurant, lounge, meeting rooms, pool, sauna, exercise facilities and extremely friendly and helpful staff. From our room on the 5th floor, we had a lovely view of the harbour and could watch the Cat arriving from Maine and docking and then returning out to sea. We could have taken our kittens with us, but opted to leave them home with Shirley (next door neighbour) feeding them - probably a wise choice given how little we were actually in the room. The restaurant was excellent - Friday evening I had planked salmon and Wayne had scallops, Saturday breakfast Wayne had the buffet and I had Eggs Benedict. The banquet was a roast beef buffet with a variety of fresh salads and hot veggies and several dessert choices (pie, mousse, cakes, squares). On Sunday morning, the Knights of Columbus put on a free breakfast for the whole group at their hall a few blocks away.

Wayne played hockey for the Barrington team - 4 games from Friday at 6:00PM to Sunday at 10:15AM - a true test for senior hockey players. His team was 1-2-1 with the tie occurring in the last game on Sunday and knocking the Halifax team out of an undefeated tie with the Valley team for the gold medals. I saw the Friday and Sunday games (Saturday I wandered around downtown Yarmouth and did the tourist thing - Yarmouth is a pretty city with lots of amazing old buildings) and his team improved greatly just playing 4 games together. They had an amazing skater, Jack, who is well into his sixties but could skate rings around the Halifax defenders. The uniforms were cute and everyone had fun too.

This week the Shelburne County 55+ games are underway. Wayne was supposed to do a Tai Chi demo this morning (but I was the only participant), this afternoon we have a hike, this evening a Coffee House, tomorrow bowling and Friday a golf scramble. The closing banquet is in Birchtown on Saturday evening.

Wayne put down his name as interested in playing hockey next year in Brockville for the provincial team - apparently there are 2 divisions- one for over 55 and the other for over 65, so maybe we'll be going to those games next Fall. Forever young!

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Going Site-seeing

Today our plan was to take our van to Bridgewater for some minor repairs at the Saunders Collision Centre on Auto Row. Originally we then planned to head back to White Point and the Liverpool Golf and Country Club for a round of golf beside the ocean (our own little Pebble Beachish course). However, early this morning it was very foggy and rainy, so we left the golf clubs at home.

After dropping off the van, we drove around Bridgewater and did some shopping. Really Wayne was very patient, even though I dragged him to Bridgewater Mall, Eastside Plaza, Canadian Tire and Wal-mart. He did buy himself a new hockey stick and some tape so he was pretty mellow.

On the way home, we decided to site-see a bit and turned off #103 at exit 17A to visit Port Medway and its 2 lighthouses. By this time it had cleared up and turned quite warm so even out on the rocky shore it was very nice. We admired Port Medway park and realized we had never made it down there before, having turned farther up the road. It is a very lovely little park, right beside the marina and fishing wharf - great views out to sea. We then followed Long Cove Road - which becomes a gravel road and saw the Long Cove Light and more fantastic scenery.
Long Cove
Light -
- Port Medway

Continuing along the coast, we visited East and West Berlin and their wharves, then stopped at Beach Meadows Beach.
Beach Meadows Beach nearby - WOW! What a beautiful spot!

The trip was capped off by a late lunch at the Quarterdeck at Summerville Beach - lobster club sandwiches and fries - Wayne had a Garrison draft and I had a Mango Pineapple Breeze (basically a mango smoothie with vodka and triple-sec- yummy!).

A great Fall day!

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

September Bliss

The last few days have been lovely here. Some fog this morning which rolled in and out most of the day but it was warm and sunny, little breeze, just a perfect start to Autumn.

Wayne finished his storage shelves in the upper part of the shed - now we need to go through all the junk up there (and do some massive purging) and sort it out onto these new shelves. After that he started trimming back the pair of apple trees in the back yard which don't produce good apples, are too tall and, worst of all, block the view of the fireworks on Canada Day.

For supper, we decided to go down to the White Gull as it will likely be closing soon. It was almost warm enough to eat on the deck but with the angle of the sun putting the entire deck in shade, we opted for inside. We had the 2 specials: Wayne's was a seafood platter of fish, clams and scallops, mine was a scallop casserole with caesar salad. I tried one of Liz's blueberry dumplings for dessert and discovered a gem I have been missing for the last 8 summers! A good meal altogether.

Saturday, September 19, 2009

Lots of mileage, lots of fun!

This morning started out with the monthly Sandy Point breakfast - tea, coffee, juice, eggs, bacon, sausage, hashed browns, beans, pancakes, toast - delicious as always and a great start to the day.

After that, about 9:30. we headed back to Sable River to the Farmers ' Market. Today's purchases included carrot pasta, baguette, sliced smoked ham, sirloin steaks, Italian sausage, and a 2-person sized cabbage. As we were about to leave, Wayne noticed a fish truck so we got 2 lbs of fresh haddock as well.

We returned home for an hour and a half, then headed out to Islands Park for the kickoff picnic for the Shelburne County 55+ games. It's a really lovely park - empty of campers this time of year, so the picnic was held at the end of the park where there is a superb view of the Shelburne waterfront. There was an assortment of games like giant chess, horseshoes, ring toss to try out and while we were there instruction in geo-caching was being held. The Longboat Society (in full Loyalist costumes) gave demonstrations of their rowing skills and there was a BBQ of hamburgers and hot dogs (but we were still too full from breakfast to eat again).

It was pretty blustery and cool, so we didn't stay long - we headed into Shelburne to see the Annual Whirligig Festival. The traditional spot which the festival uses on the waterfront was not available - it is occupied by a movie set of a church constructed in the last couple of weeks for the filming of "Moby Dick". Another building is going up as well, just across the street - also a set for the filming. So the whirligigs were down by the Cox warehouse, most of them in the outdoor theatre area of the Osprey.

The wind conditions were ideal for the whirligigs - they were spinning merrily away. Lots of new creative entries this year - Wayne's favourite was called Suspended Animation and I quite liked a new circus entry. There was even a whirligig made from LEGO! Herschel and the rest of the committee did a fine job!

Cold by now, we stopped off at Tim Horton's, then returned to Lockeport. While I thawed out, Wayne put on his boots and headed out into the wilds to dig up a nice red maple tree for our yard - he just loves to move trees. While we were in Ottawa earlier this month he moved 2 from our son's yard to our townhouse and also a ton of hostas from our eldest son's yard, half of which ended up by our front door here in Lockeport. Yesterday, Wayne played in the dirt some more and set down a path of 10 stepping stones from the side door to the driveway to eliminate the Spring mud problems.

It's only 3:30 now but I thiink that's enough for today.