Originally Written August 19, 2005:
The sun streams across the Halifax Harbor below us as a cargo ship starts across the water. The Citadel stands quietly behind us, its bagpipes silenced until the tourists arrive in a few hours. Tonight the city will bustle with music and crowds under a full moon, but for now its deserted streets call me for a walk. The birthday girl, eighteen since 2:01 a.m., sleeps soundly in this luxury executive suite that we acquired quite by accident, thanks to an on-time arrival before our own room was ready.
It's been an exhilarating week: walks along red-beach coastlines and lupine-strewn dunes, kayaking with cormorants, meanderings through charming cities, boating to an uninhabited island, soaking up history and natural beauty.
Halifax, the capital of Nova Scotia, is a small but lively international port city. The shopping is far more sophisticated than what we might find at home, many of the restaurants feature outdoor seating, and the architecture is largely Victorian. It feels decidedly more cosmopolitan than most American cities, which was a delight to the mother-daughter traveling partnership. We had hoped to make a graduation trip to Europe, but outrageously high air fares had quickly quashed that plan. I thought Quebec would make a nice alternative, but the graduate, despite her twelve years of French, chose Nova Scotia and Prince Edward Island, so here we are.