Have to keep the schedule, so it’s MOTOR, MOTOR, MOTOR. Fortunately, the reason for motoring is no wind. But Environment Canada, the Canadian Federal department responsible for analyzing and forecasting weather for mariners (and others), promises some significant wind very soon. So, we are in a small hurry to get along the route to Pictou as far as possible before that wind arrives, as it promises to be somewhat a contrary wind with some strength.
Currently PRIDE II is on the west side of Cape Breton Island, about midway between the north and south ends of that nearly straight western shore of the island. Cape Breton has some pretty high elevations right close to shore so in daylight it depicts some wonderful topography. At night when motoring pretty closely along the shore Cape Breton merely looms over us with its mass of darkness, a darkness that is at odds with much of the coast that PRIDE II sails along in North America, considering the abundance of electric lights we usually see. But all along the north end of Cape Breton there are no lights because there are no people residing there. Such a darkness can bring one back to the days of European exploration and what it must have felt like coming upon a land with no lights, wondering if there was a local population and what they might be like.
PRIDE OF BALTIMORE II is midway through an itinerary of four marine festivals organized in what has been termed “outer ports”; all are within Nova Scotia. The two ports recently visited, Port Hawkesbury and Sydney, are active commercial ports, with Sydney being associated with a city center, while Port Hawkesbury is more a rural center. Each has been strong in its effort to provide hospitality to the visiting vessel crews. While the hospitality is very much appreciated, considering that most of the vessels are pretty small, hence with small crews, it has been hard for some of the crews to both provide safety, education and crowd control aboard their vessel with the visiting public AND attend the various lunches, dinners, shore side bus tours or anything else being offered. I hope the hosts understand this conflict of obligations.
Jan C. Miles, Captain aboard Pride of Baltimore II