Day 87. Thursday, 25th July. In Saint John, New Brunswick.

Up early at 7 am and on the road by 9. Our first stop was the Reversing Rapids Centre. So called as the strong tide from the Bay of Fundy pushes the water back upstream. The resulting disturbance to the water makes it look like rapids. We wanted to check what time high tide was, to see this experience. Unfortunately it wasn’t until between 11 am and 1 pm. 

We were also able to get wifi and had a message from Bill giving us his location at his friend Truly’s house and advising that the pack of parts Dennis had ordered was waiting in the garage. The address was about 9 ks out of the centre of Saint John and when we arrived Bill was still home. Having worked until 1 am the previous night, he was just about to have breakfast. Making us tea too, we had a chat before he had to go to work again. Kindly inviting us stay and make ourselves comfortable, Bill went off to work, Dennis started on fitting the parts (torsion bar bushes) and I did some washing and administration. Paying bills and applying for a new driving licence. Having reached a certain age, it is necessary to submit an application for approval for a new licence. 

In the middle of the afternoon Bill came by with two young army reservists who he was taking out on a training exercise, driving an army vehicle. They stopped for a brief chat and shortly afterwards, Bill’s friend, Truly, together with her friend, Marie, returned from Fredericton and a yoga session. They are both keen travellers and wanted to hear all about our journey. Marie invited us to come over to her house for a glass of wine at 5 pm. 

Truly’s house is in a lovely location overlooking the water. The mighty Saint John and Kennebecasis rivers meet not far from here. It was a very gently sight with people swimming in the bay. We spent a very pleasant hour or so getting to know Truly before setting off for Marie’s house. Marie is married to Colin and we had something in common, both coming from Sussex. Colin is from Eastbourne, but has lived in Canada for many years. Colin and Marie are both adventurous travellers and spend 3 months or so travelling every winter, to avoid the cold weather. Many trips to India and Africa. This year part of their travels included a cruise on a small ship from Ushuaia         to Capetown. While we were getting acquainted with much hilarity, copious wine was consumed, Marie suggested they put together an impromptu dinner. Truly had bought trout, new potatoes and salad so she and I went back to pick these up and I had a bottle of New Zealand Sauvignon Blanc in the Land Rover, as our small contribution. 

A great meal was concocted by Marie, Colin and Truly with the addition of burgers and sausages. By this time Bill had joined us too.

Back in the early 70”s both Dennis and Marie had been stuck in Dili in what was then Portuguese Timor. They were in the same compound enclosed by high wire netting. This was the only place to stay for people in transit.  Marie was coming north from Australia and Dennis going south. Neither had ever come across any one else who had stayed in this compound. Both had travel problems as communication in Indonesia was hopeless, no information could be relied on and a boat service that was supposed to operate through the Indonesian Islands, and for which they were both waiting, never materialised. 

We had the most enjoyable evening eating outside on the terrace over looking the river while the sunset. Thank you Colin, Marie and Truly. A memorable experience. For us the is the joy of travelling. Interacting with complete strangers and enjoying drinks or a meal together.

We decided we had better wend our way back to Truly’s house, while we still could, and were soon tucked up in a very comfortable bed.

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