Perhaps things went smoother than we feared because we were well prepared. I don’t know, but I’m glad that is what happened.
On Wednesday morning we awoke to discover that the place we had parked for the night must be an employee parking lot as it was pretty much full, except for the area we were occupying. Becky stepped outside to get a quick photo of the caravan before we hopped in and made our way to the border.
Fortunately, Scott having demonstrated his prowess for parking the giant moving truck with trailer set us up for an easy exit from the parking lot!
The border was not far – maybe a 10 minute drive. We first had to stop at the US export control in order to officially export our vehicles. Again, Scott was prepared. The officer in charge at export control was a little grumpy, but otherwise pleasant enough. The whole process didn’t take 10 minutes.
Then we were off to the Canadian border. This one took a little longer as we had to import not just our vehicles but also all our worldly possessions. Fortunately, again, Scott was organized and had completed all the necessary paperwork in advance – to the surprise of the Canadian customs officer.
While they were going through various forms, we took advantage of the flags, and with permission took our pictures next to the Canadian and New Brunswick flags.
It wasn’t an hour and we were off – surprised at how smoothly that went. I had to snap a quick photo that showed us arriving in New Brunswick and the speed limit signs in km. After six weeks of craziness, we could take a deep breath.
That being said, we still had a fair drive ahead of us. Although Google said it was a 6 hour drive, it was going to take us longer because the speed limit was faster than we could travel with the truck with trailer in tow. We would also need to stop and get gas and stop for lunch. Fortunately, we had everything we needed in our van, so we didn’t need to interact with anyone on the way.
As we approached the Nova Scotia border, we again had to stop for Covid screening. Somehow we missed that Nova Scotia also had an app to fill in to identify where you were staying for quarantine (we filled in the one for Canada but not the one for Nova Scotia). Fortunately it was one per family and they had paper versions, so Scott quickly filled it in.
While Scott was filling in the paperwork, one of the agents came over to chat with me. He explained that we might get calls from either (or both) the federal government or the Nova Scotia government. Both governments were doing compliance checks and they were not the same people. They would call up to three times, and if you missed all three calls they would send someone to your location to validate that you were in quarantine as required by law.
With that over, we rolled on into Nova Scotia.
With two more hours of driving ahead of us and the light fading we got back on the road. It turned out that we cleared the Nova Scotia border just before one of our Treehouse Village meetings was due to start. Amazingly, we both managed to get onto the meeting – both from our mobile devices while driving. Listening on the meeting proved to be exactly what we needed to stay awake while driving. Unfortunately, just before we joined the meeting both our walkie talkies ran out of power – which was unfortunate – as we still had to navigate finding our quarantine location.
At about 9:30pm, well after dark and completely exhausted we pulled into Katherine’s cottage on Lochaber Lake in Lochaber Nova Scotia. (Yes, I know Loch means lake).
We were so happy to arrive. We had a glass of wine and a short outdoor socially distant visit with our host – who up until this point we had only met virtually. It was incredible to finally be here.
It didn’t take long for us to collapse. We awoke to a beautiful day and a beautiful view.
If you are wondering why it has taken me so long to write this blog post – well – look at this view. The weather has been amazing since we arrived and the lake is a perfect temperature for a nice swim – not too warm and not too cold, perfect for getting a little exercise. We have had a lot of work to catch up on, having not been online for several days. Our days are mostly working, swimming, relaxing. This is what quarantine should be!
Now, don’t ask me yet what is to come next. Our plans pretty much ended at the point of getting here. We are in Nova Scotia. We officially residents of Nova Scotia. Once we recover a little more energy we’ll need to figure out where we go from here!