We arrived on Cape Breton Island at approximately 4:30 p.m., almost an hour and a half before the Port Hastings visitor's center closed. That should've left plenty of time to meet and get our picture taken with the Lobsterpalooza mascot, Pinchy the Lobster, and to buy Pinchy-related swag. But not only was Pinchy not there as promised in the Lobsterpalooza online marketing materials, there were no Pinchy t-shirts, sweatshirts, action figures, soaps, playing cards, shot glasses, magnets, giant pencils, stuffed toys, coloring books, candy bars, or quik-dry cement. In fact, looking around the visitor's center, one would be hard-pressed to find any evidence that Pinchy or Lobsterpalooza existed at all. Not so impressive for a "feastival" that's supposed to draw tourists to Cape Breton and extend the tourism season outside of July & August. Besides not having Pinchy there to greet and entertain us when we arrived over the Canso Causeway, not a single visitor's center employee was wearing an "Ask Me About Lobsterpalooza!" pin for us to steal. We are both very disappointed. Tomorrow we will attempt to intercept Pinchy at the Baddeck Yacht Club, where a roaming photographic exhibit and alleged Lobsterpalooza gift shop is scheduled to be held for one more day. We will not rest until that lobster grows tired of posing for pictures with us!
In other news, we spent a night and a fun day in Halifax after our arrival in Canada. We missed all of the "No climbing on the ramparts" warning signs at the Halifax Citadel and proceeded to get some fantastic photos of the city (and a few classy pics of each other) before being yelled at by one of the security guards in an old-timey soldier outfit.
We also had great fun mocking the new kilted summer recruits who were learning to be proper fake soldiers. It was only their second day, so there was still much turning in the wrong direction and getting barked at by the experienced fake soldiers about line spacing. The bagpiper was our sign that it was time to go, and after a brief walk through the Halifax Public Gardens, we headed up to PEI.
We spent a lovely two days on Prince Edward Island, mocking the commercialization that has sprung up around the Anne of Green Gables novels and their creator, including the Shining Waters family fun water park in Cavendish (complete with twisty water slides, just like in the books!). Sadly, we were there a little ahead of the tourist season, so we didn't get to experience Avonlea Village, blacklight mini golf, laser tag, or go-carts. Ah, how fondly I remember the scene in Anne of Avonlea where she and Diana are running away from Gilbert in their go-carts, seeking shelter behind the replica of the space shuttle Columbia...
In all seriousness, PEI was wonderful. We enjoyed driving through the countryside, walking on Cavendish Beach, and exploring Charlottetown. The B&B we stayed in was an easy walk away from the Charlottetown waterfront, and we had some excellent seafood and Cows ice cream. Dave loved the Confederation Bridge and has been taking lots of lighthouse pictures for one of his co-workers.
Tomorrow: kayaking, then vegging out and crossing my fingers that the Pistons will get their act together and win.