The bag still had air in it as new bags of chips often do to ensure freshness. I couldn’t resist opening the bag. I looked inside – all chips were dry as, well, as dry as … potato chips. I got brave and tasted one. They were factory fresh! Eric and I plunked ourselves down onto the sand and ate the chips while surveying the beach. Later on, back at home; I noticed that there was an expiry date of August 30th, 2014 and on the back of the bag it said, “Made In The U.S.A.” I did some research and found the factory on the map. The Cape Cod Chip factory is located near the waters of Poponesset Bay in a place called Hyannis, Massachusetts U.S.A. I later emailed the chip factory to tell them of the adventures of their little bag of chips and of how it had traveled up the eastern seaboard, straight up the Bay of Fundy and landed on our beach in my back yard.
|Map showing just part of the eastern seaboard that the bag of chips traveled.|
|Hot and sweaty but seeing the end in site. This made me smile!|
|Mike Cameron, CTV News reporter talks with Eric.|
|I think Eric is having second thoughts as he catches his breath.|
|Many emotions on my face, none of them good.|
|Post clean up.|
|Eric carries the last bag off the beach.|
We all went back to our house and I made coffee for us grownups and handed a nice refreshingly cold orange Popsicle for the boy’s reward. Eric also slipped a movie into the disc player … WALL-E. If you’ve seen the movie then I need say no more. I think this boy could become one of the world’s youngest activists!
mine, Kevin Shaw, a fellow weather observer who lives in Gaithersburg Maryland, U.S.A. He is also a cartographer and oceanographer with the NOAA- Federal in the U.S.A. and I asked him for his help. I needed to know if he could find out about this seaweed belt that was coming up from the New England states. He sent out a mass email to his co-workers asking them for their opinion or if they knew about this. They were not long in coming back with an answer. It turns out that every summer, in the Gulf of Maine, that large amounts, or rafts, of seaweed sloughs off after reproduction in the spring or after storms. We are thinking if a storm had anything to do with it coming this far up the coast then we are pointing the accusing finger at Post Tropical Storm Arthur, which several weeks ago paid New Brunswick a visit. So, there is the answer to the mystery of the Invasion of the Seaweed! Sounds like a title out of a Stephen King story doesn’t it? It kind of wraps it all up nice and neat doesn’t it? Well, not quite. While walking on the beach today inspecting for garbage Eric had called out to me, “Hey Nat! Come here and see this!” As I drew closer to him I followed his gaze to the ground in front of him. “Look what I found!” he said, while pointing to the ground and grinning from ear to ear. Well blow me down! It was a message in a bottle!
|Message in a bottle.|
It had traveled from Long Island Nova Scotia and was sent by a young lady
This just all happened this morning and I’ve yet to try to contact her. Actually I’m having a hard time deciphering her contact information. The reporter, Mike Cameron, is going to be calling us back for an update on, Invasion of the Seaweed and I will give him this part of the update as well. Matter of fact, I can’t wait! How cool is all of this!!! I must confess though that this isn’t the first message in a bottle that our family has found. There was another about 6 years ago that one of my sons had found on our beach at that time on the Kenebacasis River. The KR is a tidal river that flows in and out of; you guessed it, the Bay of Fundy. This message was inside a wine bottle. The label had read Blueberry Wine, Nova Scotia Canada. That message was completely different. A young woman had poured her heart out about a love that didn’t work out. She had expressed how he had made her feel and how she would never forget him. There was one thing odd about that whole letter. The writer mentioned how she wanted to be “Peter’s right eyebrow.” Go figure!
Subject: Re: Seaweed infestation
And last but not least, Matt Abbott, The Bay of Fundy Keeper. Thanks Matt and hope to connect with you in the future!
It is now, Friday August 8, 2014 and it is almost the 11th hour of a long day. I've been fighting like a bagged bobcat with my lousy dialup internet speed of only 26.4bps all day trying to put this piece together. I am getting nowhere fast. I feel my blood pressure climbing and frustration building faster than a rising tide. Yet I can smell the bay and this somehow calms me. This evenings high tide was about an hour ago and we are now at ebb tide. She is quiet. Silently sliding out as she sliently slid in. I look out into the blackness of the night through my open window. It is a muggy night and all I can hear is the soft murmuring of the surf. A very soft breeze floats in through the window off the bay and cools my skin and my temper. I think back over the past week, no, the past year and realize how much this little spot on the bay has saved my sanity more than once. The past year has brought so many challenges for us. Last July 4th, Eric had a stroke that hopitalized him for 11 days. He endured surgery and was let loose and sent home with only half his problems being addressed. The reason I even mention all of this is not for sympathy. But more to tie in the story of the seaweed invasion into our lives. You see, we are always under stress, we worry about keeping the roof over our heads and paying power bills and buying food. In the bigger picture we are not very different than a lot of New Brunswickers. When we first moved here it was love at first sight. I will never forget my first morning waking up in our little cottage and seeing the view of the cove and the Bay of Fundy. I became so overwhelmed that it made my heart ache and literally took my breath away - I wept. To say it felt like destiny had drawn us here is an understatement. The tide was in high that morning. The surf softly sliding in just like tonight. The sun was rising in the east and filled the sky with soft streaks of pink light that reflected in the still, mirrored water of the cove. I felt at the time that the quiet pull of the tide was whispering, "We've been here the whole time waiting for you to come home." I've never felt like I belonged anywhere in my life as I do here, living on this cove, on the Bay of Fundy. When the going gets rough in the everyday scheme of things and I am feeling lost and hopeless the bay always has a way of grabbing my attention be it through the scent of her, or the sounds of the crashing of her surf upon the beach, or even the call of the gulls or the eagles - it's as if she taps me on the shoulder and says, "You are not alone, I am here for you always. Toss your cares onto my waters, let me carry them away for you." She has saved my sanity more than once. I owe it to her to try to save her back. The disaster on the beach was extemely difficult on us physically. The hard reality was as two people with limited physical abilities we had no business taking on such a difficult job. I knew that at the time but, I feel such a debt of gratitude toward her. I always will. When we reached the last day of clean up, as I rode on the back of the ATV that carried me home I turned in my seat to look back at the long stretch of beach behind me and couldn't believe that we had done it. I was overwhelmed. Later that afternoon, after a long nap I made myself a much needed restorative cup of tea. From inside the kitchen I could hear the call of an eagle floating in through the windows. I took my cup of tea and stepped out onto the deck. My eyes scanned the tree tops in my yard and there he was.
|We had a nice chat.|
|He never paid me no mind, as they say.|
|I continued to sip my tea as we both looked out over the cove. It was a comfortable silence.|
|July 29th. Before clean up.|
|Before clean up.|
You can always catch me at the next high tide ...