All posts by James Messick

Day 27: Not What I Had Planned!

I woke up, made coffee and found a Denny’s on the way to the church that I had picked out for today. All I was there I talked to a lady at the next table about what to do in Cleveland. When I went to pay the cashier told me that the lady had paid my bill for me. I was shocked but was able to catch up with her in the parking lot, and asked her why she did that? She told me it was to thank me for the conversation. I was really surprised but grateful to run into such a nice person. I wondered if it was because she thought I was broke. Thanks again, Heidi! I went to 9:00 a.m. service at Cleveland Baptist Church. It was the first day of revival and they had a really good speaker from Florida. I spoke to the pastor after the service and he was very nice.

Continue reading Day 27: Not What I Had Planned!

A real lesson in selfishness

I was sitting in my car at McDonald’s, in Cleveland today, eating my lunch. I saw him in a winter coat walking down the sidewalk it was right in front of my car. First thought that came into my head was “I hope he doesn’t ask me for money.” You never even looked at me, but he did look into the garbage can by the sidewalk right in front of me. He pulled out at McDonald’s bag and seemed to be looking through it. I don’t know if he found anything to eat or not, but I felt about one inch tall for my selfish thoughts. That point I would have loved for him to ask me or something. I think I would have bought him anything he wanted to eat. I’m so fortunate, I’m able to go on a month-long vacation and do just about anything I want and I worry about someone asking me for a few dollars. I even had a stranger by my own breakfast, this morning. I pray that things go well for that man, and I pray that I have a less selfish attitude in the future. I’m humbled. Thank you for the lesson, Father.

Friends Wherever I Go!

Stopped for a big breakfast on the way to church and ended up picking the mind of the lady at the next table about places to go in the Cleveland are. When I went to pay the cashier handed me back my bill and said “Your bill has been paid!” I was shocked to learn that the lady I had spoken with had paid my bill for me! I chased her down in the parking lot and asked her why she did that. She said it was to thank me for the conversation. I told her that I should have been thanking her. and did thank her with a big hug. Thanks Heidi, you’re a good person!

Day 25: Maybe the best day!

Niagara Falls. What is there to say? Everyone has seen images of it but there is nothing like seeing it with your own eyes. So big, so much power. After a quick stop by the visitor center I went down to the falls and parked. The first thing I saw was a black squirrel. Crazy. I walked past the power station and over to the falls and that’s when the amazement begins. I took about 300 pictures and went on the boat tour and took some more pictures. Incredible! Only a 10 hour drive from home, everyone should see it.

Continue reading Day 25: Maybe the best day!

Day 24: On The Road Again!

After being awakened by the sound of a gendarme leaving a commendation for good parking under my windshield wiper I hit the road about 4:00 a.m. . Finally pulled off at a rest area for a little more sleep and to cook breakfast. Drove out of Quebec and into province of Ontario. Stopped for lunch at Boston Pizza. Jambalaya pasta was very good. I’m getting back on the highway I saw a Planet Fitness and immediately exited. After proving my identity and vaccination status I was able to take a really long hot shower and shave off a week’s worth of beard.

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Day 23? Across New Brunswick

Stopped for a bite at a restaurant in Edmundston, NB. Starting today they require you to show proof of vaccination and ID! 😮 Manager salary said that I had to show my passport, I think he meant my covid passport. When I had proven my acceptability I was allowed to purchase a small poutine. Manager was actually very nice and we chatted for a while, and he gave me some ideas about what to see while I was in town. I rode my bike on their nice River trail. Saw some men picking wild Cherries to make wine with and picked a few myself. They were very large. Also met a man who had added a gas engine to his bicycle. Also stopped and watched some men using a piece of machinery I had never seen before. Finally realized that it was a tree digging-up machine fascinating.

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Day 22: Croissants, l and Coffee. To go!

The first step on the agenda was a stop at the French bakery. It was tempting to get one of everything, but got a chocolate croissant, a scone, cranberry muffin, and a cinnamon roll. I ate two of the items right away, and the chocolate croissant was unbelievable! I stopped by before I left town and picked up three more croissants, chocolate, butter and cheese. I also got a cup of coffee, figuring it must be really good. It was, but it tastes just like mine! I guess I make really good coffee. 😋

Continue reading Day 22: Croissants, l and Coffee. To go!

Day 21: More Than I Could Chew

I bit off more than I could chew today, twice but I was able to push through it! Well, once I pushed through and thesecond time I got it to go box!

I hit the road early, taking the same ferry that I mistakenly took yesterday. Then continuing on the Cabot Trail I continued stopping for pictures and whale watching. More like whale looking-for since I have not seen a tail yet. Paid the admission for Cape Breton Highlands National Park. It’s similar to a US national park but with fewer gift shops. First stuff was the beach, very beautiful with all of the round gray stones and a very narrow sandy shoreline. It was also a really nice washroom where I took the opportunity to clean up!

One of the features of the park was a boardwalk through a bog. Very educational and a chance to see a moose!

Mr Moose!

My next stop was at the famous Skyline Trail, the the most popular destination in the park. It wasn’t a very technical trail, but it took me 3 hours and I was exhausted by the time I got back. About 1/3 of the way along the trail you come to a beautiful lookout with views of the mountains and the ocean, and steps down to different levels. I went about halfway down, knowing I would have to come back up! Along the rest of the trail there are a few lookouts but nothing special like that first one.

It was pretty and I kept taking my binoculars out and looking for a moose! Looking. Looking. Finally, just before I reached the parking lot I saw a group of people congregating and looking into the woods. I hurried up to the group and there she was, just munching away! It was so big and so close I was able to get some really good pictures with just my phone. After a minute a park ranger appeared and warned us not “get charged” and think about which direction we would be running. That caused the crowd to thin out a bit.

I left Skyline and continued on the Cabot Trail, stopping at a beautiful campground right by the sea where I regrouped for a few minutes. I was just so exhausted from the hike… I got back on the road and left which left Breton and entered the town of Chéticamp. I heard there was a really good bakery here, but it had just closed for the day. So I found a pub and had dinner, fish and chips with a side of seafood chowder. Outstanding! The chowder was awesome, and the way they cooked the fish it had such a fluffy soft breading on it, almost creamy. Leftovers for today! I just decided to camp out back of the restaurant. Is a very cold night, 45°.


Mileage: 112. Expenses: Gas: $114.41😮 Admission: $6.25. Dining: _36.05.