We settled into their home for several days, shopped at the local grocer in town, squeezed in with the locals at Rick’s Fish ‘n’ Chips pub, and spent time around Ian and Pam’s huge island kitchen, adorned with a collection of beautiful copper pots, listening to their stories of global adventure.
The story of preparing for their royal visit, events that were unplanned for and surprising while the royal couple were there, and the memories that were created is fantastic. Princess Diana, so young and fragile-looking, had just had little Prince William but he was behind in England. I loved hearing their tale of hosting such an infamous and glamorous couple!
Pam has a line of adorably sweet knitted baby caps. In addition, she is currently working on a cookbook that will be coming out later this year. I was able to tuck away a copy of her recipe for “Apple Betty” and I cannot wait to try it in my kitchen!
A few times, I found myself having a difficult time focusing on what Pam and Ian were saying. Tiny little hummingbirds would flit here and there right behind them, whizzing from flower to flower. They would be in mid-sentence of a captivating story and I would gasp, “Look, another hummingbird right behind you!“
The swishing and swaying of the tall piney woods on the southern side of their home was yet another pleasant distraction. The trees would make such peaceful rustling sounds that I couldn’t help staring out the window in the direction of the lovely sounds.
Ian and Pam’s love of gardening is obvious and their house is surrounded with their beautiful flower gardens as well as a plentiful vegetable garden. Locally sourced sausages, those adorable tiny northern blueberries, and Pam’s wonderful bran muffins showcase their desire to prepare healthy and homemade breakfast treats.
Riley and I took off one day and biked another leg of The Confederation Trail. The Confederation Biking Trail runs all along the northern rim of the island. It was created from a renovated train track that went out of use years ago. We rented bikes in the town of Morell, rode alongside blackberry bushes and apple trees and attempted to burn off Ian’s delicious ham and poached egg cups from breakfast that morning.
Views of St. Peter’s Bay were on one side and quaint farm fields were on the other. When we crossed the bridge at St. Peter’s Bay, we were exhausted. However, that exhaustion quickly turned into relief when we pedaled up to a series of adorable craft shops that included an ice cream shop too. A few purchases made, tied in haphazard fashion to my bike’s handle bars, and fortified by cream and sugar, we trekked back over the lovely countryside back to Shady Lane.
Ian and Pam share something in common with our family. We’ve both lived in Japan. As teachers, they had an experience living in Tokyo, Japan. Whereas, we were new arrivals in Japan right when 911 happened in the U.S., they were residing in Tokyo when the recent tsumani hit the island.
|Ian’s Poached Eggs in Ham Cups with Fresh Pesto and Homemade Salsa|
People were sleeping on the floors of shops, on the side walks, and anywhere they could find a spot as their world struggled to get back to normal. Listening to their stories put goose bumps up and down my arms. Ian and Pam ended up in New Zealand for a time and then with only a few of their belongings, they eventually made their way back to Canada.
Happily, everything turned out well and they are now retired and tucked safely on their beautiful island home. In between treks to countries like Africa and Portugal on off season, they enjoy entertaining travelers sharing and hearing stories of adventure.
One morning, Pam brought out thick slices of her homemade wheat bread. She also had homemade raspberry and blueberry jams to go along with it. I do believe with a nice cup of strong milky coffee, I could live on nothing more than her thick bread and homemade jam!
|Top L: Ian and Pam’s Vegetable Garden
Bottom L: Scenes from the bike trail of St. Peter’s Bay
I do wonder what the island looks like as we are now approaching October. I imagine the wild northern winds and the reddening of leaves as the island readies itself for the change of seasons.
I imagine once the tourists have packed up and left, the island might even show itself off in its most beautiful costume of all. Prince Edward Island in October must be stunning. As sorry as I was that Patrick couldn’t see the beauty of the island with me, I keep telling him that will be reason to return again someday…in October next time.
|Top L: Mussel farming in the bay|
Parts of Prince Edward island remind me of another series of books by a little girl that charms the hearts of millions with her stories of pioneering life in the U.S., Laura Ingalls Wilder.
In October, we’ll be rolling through the hills of Arkansas and into the southern Ozark territory of Missouri…her storybook world. It is amazing how simple stories of everyday childhood adventures, so well written, can leave its mark on an area for all the world to enjoy.
|Top L: Deer spotted while returning through New Brunswick|