Monday, July 23, 2007

A Long, But Very Exciting, Adventurous Tale

Here I am, blogging from Nova Scotia. We arrived safely Sunday afternoon around 4:00 Atlantic time, but not without our share of adventures. Shall I elaborate?

After leaving home Saturday morning at 7:45, excited and well rested, we headed off to the unknown and far away land of Nova Scotia, Canada. I had four rolls of quarters, plenty to make it through the many toll booths on the way. I learned, shortly into our trip, not to pay the toll attendee with a whole roll of quarters (our toll was $8.10 just to get out of NY) because not all of them are very honest and I only got $1.25 back from the $10.10 that I gave him. Not a good way to start out, tipping the toll man so generously. But that was a very small thing, so we brushed it off and continued through Massachusetts. Lovely state that is... Although I was very glad to be going east on the Mass. Turnpike because if we had been going the other way, we would've been sitting in a traffic jam that was at least 30 miles long. And it was there for no apparent reason. Traffic jammed up getting off the highway, traffic jammed up in the middle of the highway, traffic was just one big jam! And New Hampshire... Ugh! The whole fifteen miles of it was SLOOOOW. Ridiculously slow. Must be because of vacation season, because I can't imagine traffic being like that all the time. After getting through New Hampshire (which took an hour), we headed off to Maine. We payed a toll upon getting to Route 95 (or 495, can't remember which) and every time we got off to go potty or get gas, we had to pay to get back on. Silly thing... We should've got gas the same time that we got off to go potty, but who were we to know that we would be charged every time we got on? Not like NY, where you pay for whatever length you are on. Oh well, now we know. Eventually we got to hungry and we all wanted a good bowl of New England clam chowder. If you want the good stuff, much better than even Cambell's, you need to get some in New England. So we found ourselves a little seafood joint in Bangor, ME and attempted to have some clam chowder. Guess some places don't have it all the time, but we did get to have haddock chowder, which was something new to me. It was enjoyable and tasty, but not quite like clam chowder. I'm not complaining, because I love to try new things, but I hope to get a good bowl of clam chowder while I'm in seafood country.

This is where our adventure really starts. And it all starts when I get in the drivers seat. It was about 7:30, and I thought Jim needed a break from driving, which he did. We rewrote our trip plan a little bit because our map quest directions had us go way up north and then back down, when there was a nice road (Route 9) which went from where we were to where we were headed. Seemed more logical to me and I was driving, so Jim gave me permission to go where I thought we should go. This road went up and down hills, through the woods, and was pretty quite for the most part... Ha-ha. You know those signs that say "Watch for Moose"? Do you know how big a moose can be? Do you know that moose sometimes run out of the woods? In front of cars? Wow, was it a close one for the guy who was in front of me. I saw the moose run out of the woods... It was around dusk and getting toward being dark... It didn't register at first as "moose". At first I thought it was a horse, but only for a second. It was huge and black and as tall as my car. The man in front of me didn't see the moose till it was right in front of him. He slammed on his brakes and swerved just a bit and if he had been a millisecond farther on his journey, Mr. Moose would've been in his windshield and we would've been calling 911. Was that ever exciting... That was my first moose sighting, and my last so far. Later on down the road we passed a bar. We didn't stop for any drinks but evidently someone else on the road had had at least one too many. Pretty soon we came upon a white pick-up truck who kinda didn't seem right. First he was right along the shoulder in the gravel. Then he kinda drifted into the middle. "Hmmm, " we thought. "Is he drunk?" Back toward the shoulder and then, DANGER, DANGER! We knew he was drunk when we were driving up a hill and he was half-way over the double line. God is good that no one was coming the other way. So I handed my phone to Joe and then to Jim, who called 911 to report him. We had to do some good detective work to figure out where we were and what his license plate # was. Then he turned off the road so we had to slow down to see the road sign. I was beginning to think that the people following us were going to call us in for erratic driving. But no one did.

Am I boring anyone yet? Is this getting too long? Because the best is yet to come and I cannot stop now!!!

Our plan was to stop for the night in Calais, which is a little town right on the border. While I was driving the streets trying to find a motel, we saw these people (I thought they were kids playing at the time) chasing each other down the street. Now I'm sure you understand that things don't always register at first (for example moose running across road). Two of these "kids" were chasing another who had two bags in her hands and was running toward a white car. As we passed the two we heard some shouting, "Stop that car! Stop that car!" If only it had registered sooner, Joe could've jumped out of the car and nabbed that woman. I stopped in the middle of Main St (no one else was there, driving or on the side walk). What to do, what to do... The white car has backed up into the alleyway and is getting away. I turn the street corner to see if we can see them. There is the car going up the hill. This is kinda scary and then Jim has to mention guns and what if they are armed. I chicken out before we even get anywhere close to seeing the license plate number. Guess I wouldn't make a very good cop. Besides that, it wasn't in my plan to be shot while on vacation. So we drive toward the couple who were running after the woman with the purses. They were already on the cell phone calling the police, but me, being blond and not knowing what else to say ask, "Do you have a phone?" This woman, the poor thing, was all out of breathe and she knew we saw the whole thing. She comes, over hands me the phone and is talking so fast (and in Chinese to the man with her), I have no idea where we are, who the woman is, and the man on the phone is asking me all kinds of questions! I stutter and stammer and explain to the man that this lady's purse was just stolen and I try to figure out where we were and what the lady's name is. Nobody knew the street name, but the Chinese man said we were in front of the Calais City Hall. Somehow Calais was lost in the muddle and the man on the phone asked if we were in St. Steven. I thought he meant the street name... How was I to know St. Steven was on the other side of the border in New Brunswick? "Uh, I think so..." What a dork. What I really wanted to do, was hand the phone back to the woman, but she was so out of breathe and I'm pretty sure she wanted me to talk... The man on the phone transfers me to someone in St. Steven. At this point, I tell them we are in Calais and he transfers us back to the other guy. Ugh! At this point, we have established where we are and the man on the phone says he will call us right back. The phone goes back to the Chinese lady and I tell her they are going to call. By now the car and the purse are who knows where... Then this other woman comes up to the Chinese couple. She had heard them shouting when there were running down the street. She was evidently friends with the couple and addressed the lady as Hong. Hong tells the new lady what happened. What I got out of it, in brief, was the burglarer was an Indian woman who claimed to know Hong or Hong's mother. Hong owns the Kwong Wah Chinese restaurant down the street and somehow this Indian woman stole the restaurants whole night worth of cash. So, we make sure this couple doesn't need our anymore of our "help" and go off to find our motel. Two seconds down Main Street, there is the motel and we are feeling guilty for leaving because we are the only other witnesses to the crime. We drive back but the couple is gone, presumably back to their restaurant with the other lady. Now where is the Kwong Wah Chinese restaurant? We drive down the road but don't see it, so we turn around. Oh! There's a police car and it pulls up in front of a restaurant. Maybe the Chinese couple went in there. We pull over and follow the police man inside. He goes up to the bar... Wait, is that our man? What is the police man doing? He paid for some food, picked up his to-go order and went to the street. We had ducked back outside after we weren't sure if this was our officer. He saw us standing there and stopped so we asked him if he had gotten a call about a stolen purse. Then he put on this professional police mode, and we told him about what happened. He asked if this was the same purse robbery that he got a call for, if we got the license plate number, etc... He said he went to the city hall and no one was there. We told him we thought maybe they went back to their restaurant. Oh, he'd check on it right away. We think he was slacking off... Why would you go get some food when someone just called about a robbery? Wouldn't you go find them? Besides that, the lady who came to help them right before we left, had called 911 too. So I'm sure she told them where they were going. I don't think he realized that a whole nights worth of income for the Kwong Wah had been stolen, not just a lady's purse. So, Mr. Policeman drove away to find the couple. And we drove off to find a room for the night.

Boy, was I ever worked up now. All that excitement and in just one night. Time for some sleep. I suppose we shall never know if Hong or the Kwong Wah ever recover any of their money. But I hope someone catches that Indian woman.

7 comments:

Martha said...

What a great adventure! here you are all tired out from a long day of driving and you get some great reasons to stay awake all night thinking about it!

gmj said...

Wow!! That is a great adventure!!

Priscilla said...

Sounds like a movie!

Bob said...

If it was a movie, Beth woild've smashed into the car and Joe would've nabbed her while Jim called the police.

Rachel said...

Sounds like a vacation the three of you will never forget! Be safe!

Bethany said...

Bob, I thought about backing up toward the get-away car, but I was afraid of getting my car smashed into by the thieves. Like I said, I wouldn't make a good cop, cause I'm too chicken.

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