Battle Harbour, Once the Unofficial Capital of Labrador

I am not sure what first drew me to Battle Harbour.   I think it may have been the advertisement in Newfoundland’s “Lost and Found” travel brochure.  Maybe it was the article with the word “Escape” in the title.  Or maybe it was the promise of a place where “the distance is as much metaphorical as it is physical.”

I’ve always gravitated to historic places with a feel for authenticity….that promise realism of what life was like so long ago, yet also understate the conveniences and comforts of present day. I don’t really care for places like Williamsburg with its spiffy Continue reading

Red Bay, White Dust, and Black Flies

Red Bay, up the rugged coast of Labrador, is one of Canada’s newer UNESCO World Heritage Sites.  Awarded the UNESCO status in 2013, this sheltered bay was once a thriving whale fishery, driven by the demand for whale oil used for lighting and manufacturing in Europe.

Between 1530 and the early part of the 16th century, Basque people from Spain and southern France would travel over in the spring, setting up what was the world’s first industrial scale fishing industry, Continue reading

Amour in Labrador!

Have you ever had one of those times when things just seem surreal? When you ask yourself “Is this reality, or maybe I have died, and this heaven?” Like a series of things that “never happen,” happen all at once?

I’ve had an ongoing love affair with lighthouses since I was a small child, allowed to climb the tower of the Port Isabel lighthouse on our family vacations to South Padre Island. So consider the irony that I end up spending the night with a lighthouse called “Amour,” defined as “a secret or illicit love affair or lover.” Continue reading

The Viking Trail to the Big Land of Labrador

My northernmost point on the island of Newfoundland is L’Anse aux Meadows, UNESCO World Heritage site at the end of The Viking Trail.

If one is to write an honest blog, it sometimes means confessing to one’s ignorance.  Prior to my visit to L’Anse aux Meadows, my knowledge of Leif Erikson was relegated to high school history class when Leif was used as an example of a “patronym,” the naming convention of a person’s surname being based on the given name of one’s father.  Leif Erikson was “Erik’s son,” son of “Eric the Red,” who was credited with discovering Greenland. Continue reading