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Retread for the Watery Way Back to Fundy Bay: Mile 1849

A New Tire for Wet Weather

I called Red Line Honda in Antigonish first thing this morning.  They had tires in stock, but the service manager Dale claimed that they were backed up with bikes for about a week.  I've been in a desperate situation before though, and laid on a thick sob story about not wanting to risk my life if they couldn't take me. Dale asked me to call back in a few hours, and thankfully they fit me in.

 My tread was completely shot.
 There were millimeters of surface area in the middle of the tread.
 The tech incredulously joked that I had gotten every last mile I could have out of the tires, as the rubber felt like the width of silk around the apex of the tire.
In Canada, certain aspects of life are certainly collectivized, like healthcare (and goods heavily taxed, with Nova Scotia collecting a whopping 15% sales tax).  However, there is a strong cultural thrust of individual determination and personal responsibility that I think has been sued and law-suited out of American culture.  Along the road, Jay noticed there were no guard rails and very few warning signs, which could be a huge liability in the US.  And in the states, a mechanic would never let you into his shop, let alone ask you for a hand putting a tire back on or lend you tools to make a quick adjustment.  
Jay and I stopped off for "Donair" at a Mediterranean restaurant in Moncton.
With a brand new rear tire on by 11:30am and rather ominous storm clouds gathering, Jay and I wanted to push on past Moncton, where I had originally planned on spending the night.  The last great point of interest on our trip was supposed to be the Bay of Fundy, but we were hit with sporadic thunderstorms several hours into today's ride.
 Wet but determined, we plotted a course along the scenic route towards Fundy National Park, an incredible geological phenomenon where the grade of the coast and watershed delta is so gradual that the tides flow back up into the rivers several times a day, causing most streams to look like canyons carved out of red clay.
 We took a few back roads when the skies briefly cleared, but a steady downpour set in by the time we reached the park.
Jay and I soggily tried to find a good vantage to view the coast, but a 12km hydroplane down a park road only yielded a glimpse of the coastline.
Waterlogged wayfarers and our wet rides
 Finally, we made our way back to the entrance to the park, where we got a brief view of the tip of the Coast (outside Alma, NB) jutting out of the water, and the massive tidal shore revealing itself from bay.
Bay of Fundy, New Brunswick.
 Continuing on inland, we stopped beside this sylvan mountain lake, contemplating taking a dip, as we could not possibly get any wetter than we were at that moment.
 We got back to St. John, NB by early evening, where the most affable innkeep named Kant, upon two drenched bikers re-entering the hotel office nearly a week after departing on the Digby Ferry, exclaimed, "Welcome home!!!."
View from our table at Reversing Falls Restaurant
 This happy man proceeded to get us restaurant reservations, lend us a hairdryer and find us the perfect room to eventually put down our bedraggled heads.  Before we did though, Jay and I went out in the rain for a quick pint on the waterfront, where the few pub-goers inside were slightly baffled by two curious, sopping-wet Yanks, drinking beers outside in the middle of a downpour as thunderstorms cascaded across the city.

Next Day: Nova Scotia: Mile 2167

© 2014 Tigh Loughhead


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