July 14, 2008

Spuds, Bottles and Wind

Prince Edward Island has been our home for the last few days. We have been travelling the west side along the North Cape Coastal Route. The ride has been exciting along dramatic coasts, through small French villages and through potato fields. Spuds are a really big deal here since they are one of the major potato production areas of the world. The combination of potatoes and forest has caused the locals to look like The Logger Mr. Potato Head, as you can see from the picture.

The Island evens boasts of a potato museum, kind of a mish mash of things. Outside sits the biggest spud you have ever seen!

The inside has a Potato Hall of Fame. I think of it more as a French Frying Legion. And there is a whole room dedicated to the "enemies" of the potato - like blight and microorganisms (they may be the same thing, I don't know.) They placed their enemies inside little caskets! How charming.

You may be wondering where these islanders live. How about in houses made from bottles?

A retired guy had so much time on his hand that he built three houses out of concrete and glass bottles, some 22,000 in all. Unfortunately he didn't think of putting them on foundations so they all had to be rebuilt after he died. Today the houses are amidst terrific gardens. I can tell you from first hand experience that mosquitoes love the bottle houses.

Our final stop yesterday was the North Cape Wind Test Site where the Canadian government is doing research about harnessing the wind. It is all very technical, but bear with me. Here is the technical part that I learned: The wind blows and turns the big arm things which in turn (and turning) do some magic stuff to produce electricity. I know. That's a lot to remember. But I brought home a reminder. I was so impressed that I had them retrofit my motorhome so that it now runs on wind power rather than gas. It's a little front heavy but it does great in the wind.

Prince Edward Island has been a joy. It is an island of simplicity with tidy small homes and much open space. I remember most the air and the sea. The two mesh and are always present. The campgrounds are mostly located at the water's edge. Beautiful sunsets adorn each evening.
We are off to more adventures!

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