Thursday, September 17, 2009


To get to PEI we drove over the Confederation Bridge. This pic is from the New Brunswick side from a distance and it was very impressive to drive over. Built in 1997 it spans 12.9 kms over the Northumberland Strait, making it the world's longest bridge over ice-covered waters. The toll ($42.50) is located on the island side of the bridge, so you pay when you leave the island, not when you arrive. The speed limit is 80 k and it takes about 12 minutes to cross the bridge.
As we arrived on the PEI side of the bridge, this view welcomes you to "The Gentle Island". It is an island of rolling hills and farms. PEI is famous for its red soil and delicious potatoes. The high levels of iron oxide in the soil, once exposed to the air, "rusts" turning it bright red and provides perfect conditions for potatoes to grow in.
PEI is also famous for "Anne of Green Gables" and this home was the birthplace of, Lucy Maud Montgomery, the author of the Anne books and many other novels which were all set on PEI.
LM Montgomery kept many scrapbooks depicting her personal life as a student, writer and teacher.
She was born in this room on November 30, 1874, but only lived there 2 years due to her mother's illness and subsequent death. She then lived with her maternal grandparents in Cavendish.
This is the Green Gables house that has become famous around the world as the inspiration for the setting of Anne of Green Gables. It was actually LB Montgomery's cousins home near where LBM grew up nearby with her grandparents. She dearly loved the surrounding woodlands and drew inspiration from this peaceful setting throughout her writing career.
We strolled through the woods she loved and named - here Mike and I are in "Lovers Lane". We also went through the "Haunted Woods", but it looked peaceful and beautiful. Plaques along the trails contained writings of the author and were so inspired and beautiful.
It was amazing to walk the trails she did and enjoyed a beautiful sunny day.
We continued on to the actual homesite of her grandparents where she lived until she married and this is what remains. Here she wrote "Anne of Green Gables"
David Macneill, great-great-grandson of LB Montgomery's grandparents who raised her here, showed us the desk that she used while working at the Cavendish Post Office and the PO stamp. She mailed the manuscript for Anne of Green Gables to 5 publishers before it was accepted. He gave us many details of her life, but I was shocked when I learned that she took her own life after battling depression for many years. I think she was extremely sensitive to the environment around her and indeed he also said that WW2 greatly distressed her - she died in 1942.
We visited the Cavendish Post Office which is still working and houses a replica of what it was like when she worked there.
I wished we had more time to spend on PEI, it is a beautiful island. We were happy to stop at "Chez Yvonne's" for lunch as recommended by David Macneill - had fish and chips with haddock and it was excellent.

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