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Monday, 11 July 2011

Vacationing in NL

Wow is this province beautiful. It has been such an amazing 2 weeks traveling around the Island portion of NL for Tidy Towns judging and then capping the whole trip with a fantastic wedding in Main Brook. I have met some fantastic new friends, and as always I am left in awe of this amazing place that we have chosen to call home.

My journey included stops in Terrenceville, Port Blandford, Dover, Gander, Appleton, Corner Brook, Ramea, Piccadilly, Cox's Cove, St. Pauls, Norris Point, Trout River, and Main Brook. With over 4000kms of driving it was a lot to fit into 12 days and I know we only scratched the surface. A special thanks to the municipal staff and councillors who took the time to show us around as part of the Tidy Towns program, it was a great pleasure and honnor to get such a hands on introduction to such great places.

While we sometimes tend to focus on the struggles and issues we face in rural NL, this trip has reaffirmed in me the hope that we are a strong and innovative people who care greatly about our communities and there's very little we can't do. To see the efforts that people are investing into volunteer initiatives around the province is impressive to say the least. At least 2 of the communities we visited had Wellness Committees who raised funding specifically for medical travel, and in one case every household and business had an annual contribution amount and then they would fundraise for any additional required. So many places are taking such great pride in their heritage and there are literally too many festivals and events to list.

In case it isn't already obvious I have had a great 2 weeks and yet only experienced a very small portion of the many great and wonderful things to do in NL. I would encourage everyone to get out and see what NL really looks like. Despite what you may think the various regions of the Island are very different and there are so many breathtaking views that it's no wonder why visitors return here year after year. And while this trip unfortunately did not include Labrador I personally encourage everyone to make at least one trip to the Big Land in their lives. Trust me when I say it is worth it.

So for at least one brief moment amongst all the political wrangling and concerns of the day I want to take a few paragraphs to say that we live in the best place on earth, and I wouldn't have it any other way. A huge pat on the back to us all.

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