Halifax & the Maritime Museum

On Saturday, September 16, we met with new friends from the past campground who actually live in Manitoba & Quebec, Canada and are travelling here in RVs.  They are in their 50s and retired and were amazed to hear our ages and adventures.  After they left, we headed back into Halifax for the Atlantic Maritime Museum on Lower Front Street and lunch at Salty’s.  This museum houses a big collection of Titanic artifacts and a great collection of some of the largest ship models anywhere.  The museum chronicles the Halifax Explosion of December 6, 1917 where two ships carrying explosives collided.  One ammunitions ship caught fire then drifted into the docks where it exploded destroying a large part of the harbor killing 2,000 people and injuring 9,000.  Pieces of metal and a cannon barrel weighing over 1,000 pounds were found over a mile from the scene.  A map in the museum shows red dots for all the shipwrecks around this part of the Maritimes and they say there could have been over 20,000 or more since they have been keeping records.  Rough, rocky coastal area and bad weather here during the winters with lots of wind!  They even show how and why they hanged pirates here.  Poor guy!

We ate lunch at Salty’s which is not related to the really great one near Portland, OR.  We sat outside and watched the boats and ferries come and go while we ate.

Fish and chips were OK but a bit greasy for our taste.  Do not like driving the Halifax area at all, as traffic is heavy at all times, even on weekends and the two lane highway in and out of town zig-zags through residential and commercial districts.  Streets are narrow with parking allowed in some areas in the right lane (you never know when), pedestrians have the right-of-way, lots of people walking since parking and fuel (diesel over $5/gallon US) is expensive and not readily available and many streets downtown are one way but not easily identified.

There are lots of large apartment communities all over town and many of the older Victorian homes have been converted into multi-family homes.  Our large truck is an oddity and hard to maneuver amongst their tight streets and parking lots.  Many people here are driving newer small cars and whip in and out in front of you, worse than Boston or LA area.  (The Leader almost “T-Boned” one turning into Walmart.  It was so small the lady driver could not see over the hood of our F-250.)  We had to access this area to see the Museum and visit the Citadel.  Halifax is a very cosmopolitan city which is evidenced by the churches we passed.  One is the St. Gebriel Ethiopian Orthodox Tewahedo Church with a congregation of about 30 started in an old Anglican church in 2011.  Another is the Diman Lebanese Centre and then there is the Islamic Community Center right up the road.  There are lots of Baptist Churches here as they drove all the Catholics out years ago sending them to Louisiana.  But some Anglican churches remain in the area.  Even saw a young man throw down his jacket and kneel to pray to Allah while his veiled wife and 2 sons stood nearby before entering the Museum.  Must have been that time of day!

Although a cosmopolitan city, Halifax is complete with Costco, Walmart, Home Depot and McDonalds.  What it does not have is Pinch, Mexican food and more reasonable fuel pricing.

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