Wednesday, July 01, 2009

Cruising the Islands then Finding our Own Village!

Views of 1000 islands

Wellington Ontario

Tiny bridge separating two little islands between USA and Canada
Wellington - paddling in Lake Ontario

As we sat eating breakfast In Kingston Ontario on Tuesday morning (our time) we spotted two little black squirrels preening themselves outside the window. They were too quick to photograph but they were really cute. Since then we have spotted quite a few squirrels and they can move really fast!

After brekkie we drove about 30km from Kingston to Gananoque where we went for a three hour cruise of the 1000 Islands. In spite of the bleak day and odd sprinkles of rain (surprise, surprise) the cruise was really interesting with beautiful views of the islands which actually number 1,865 not the purported 1000; many of them are inhabited some with only one house! They lie in the St Lawrence seaway between Canada and USA and the boat criss-crosses between them.
After our boat tour we drove back to the US and stayed overnight in Watertown, not much there, just a convenient stopover, before driving 600km to Lancaster, Pennsylvania yesterday where we have booked an extra night because there's so much to see.
We had a very full day today. We visited two very interesting villages - the Village of Intercourse and the Village of Bausman! Now there has to be a good story behind Intercourse, Pennsylvania - apparently the village was called Cross Keys, but because it was the entry to the local horse race course it became known as Enter Course, which eventually became corrupted to Intercourse.... Or maybe someone simply had a sense of humour and an eye for a profit - the "I love Intercourse" t-shirts seem to sell very well! No, I didn't buy one - I would be too embarrassed to wear it in Canberra!! Then there's Virginville, Paradise, Bird in Hand, and Blue Ball, all villages in the countryside around Lancaster - Amish country, very quaint, green and prosperous. They really do travel around in horse drawn carriages, disavow electricity and television, make most of their own clothes in traditional style, wear straw hats, and teach their children themselves. They also have special Sunday clothes and the men wear black hats instead of straw! We were told all this on the Amish village tour today .... and it's a myth that they don't pay taxes. So there you are, an interesting and downright quaint part of the world.
The main reason for coming here, however, was to visit Bausman, Pennsylvania, a suburb of Lancaster. It turns out to be a small residential area, with no facilities other than a post office with a very friendly postmistress who is willing to stamp our postcards with Bausman as evidence!
Today we also explored Kitchen Kettle Village (very pretty) and Strasbourg which had a fantastic model railway and a Thomas the Tank Engine shop - our grandchildren would have loved it here! Our hotel is actually directly opposite the Dutch Wonderland and there are a number of very excited young children staying here as it's the school summer holidays.
To top off our day we had dinner in a gorgeous little old pub dating back to 1740. The food was delicious and the ambience just fabulous.

1 comment:

  1. I was expecting 4th of July photos! It's taking a while to catch up on blogs. Where's the photo in front of the Bausman town sign? Wellington Postes looks a bit French to me - and as for Intercourse...