Tuesday, June 12, 2007

May 30 to June 12, 2007

June 12, 2007

Contacted local Ottawa people to confirm our arrival and the event tomorrow.
More frustration trying to update the Blog at the Ottawa Public Library. Security so tight I can't download my E-mail or update the Blog from my wireless laptop.

I was finally able to get access to update my Blog through the library's hard wired computers, using a thumb drive. Cannot connect my own laptop to their system.

June 11, 2007

Ottawa, ON

RCMP Barracks.

Trans Canada Trail from RCMP Barracks to downtown Ottawa. Permission granted by Ottawa Police but they don't control the National Capital Commission lands. Almost received a $95 ticket by RCMP for riding a horse on NCC property.

Rode around downtown. The Hon. Bill Graham (Liberal - Former Interim Leader and PM) made a significant donation to the Ride.

Stayed overnight at Rideau Carleton Raceway. Brandy tangled in rope. Rope burn to LR ankle. She is OK but will be given time to heal before riding again. Seen by local trainer who referred us to the local co-op for penicillin, antibiotic cream and wraps.
June 10, 2007

Ottawa, ON

Happy Birthday to Bruce.

Left St. Remi, QC and traveled through Kanawake Reserve and to Hawksbury, ON. The horses were quite a hit in the village. Debated about overnight. Called Rideau Carleton Raceway south of Ottawa and they agreed to put us up again.

Downtown Ottawa. Byward Market. Listened to street musician Francis Wang playing the Chinese Dulcimer tuned to the chromatic scale. Incredible. He played with the Shanghai Symphony in China before immigrating to Toronto. Birthday present of one of his CD's. His compositions are magnificent.

Many people have heard about FASD but have very limited knowledge.
June 9, 2007

Montreal, QC

Visited Old Montreal and Notre Dame Basilica. Beautiful. Took the horses to ride on Mount Royal at Montreal Police Mounted Division. Not permitted. Fed and watered the horses. Visited Claudia's son, Francis and his girlfriend. Quebec has a very bad attitude about horses, unless they are collecting $2000 per horse per year to pull a carriage.

To St. Remi to stay with friends of Steve's girlfriend. Daniel and Teresa Soucy have a large dairy farm and two delightful children. Wonderful meals and conversation. Teresa is from BC and Daniel has traveled extensively across Canada. Teresa is starting a business making specialty jams and preserves to sell over the Internet. Delicious samples. The dairy farming business is tough and demanding at the best of time. Cows don't take vacations or weekends off. The World Trade Organization rules have just made it much tougher.

June 8, 2007

Quebec City, QC

Visited Old Quebec and the Citadel and Legislature. Very restrictive with horses. Charge $2000 for a license.

Had dinner and left town. Camped overnight near highway off-ramp. On to Montreal.

June 7, 2007

St. Andre, QC

Camped at a horse farm in St. Andre.

Levi's situation at home on the Oromocto Reserve at Fredericton becoming a problem and he and Ryan had to leave. The Band elections are about to start and Levi will run for Council. The current Chief encouraged Levi to do the ride and then laid him off, cutting his income off. Betrayal. Levi will assist in the election campaign of a friend to remove the current Chief.

Horses banned from Trans Canada Trail. Not able to ride. Drove through the small towns where we had planned to ride. One rider rode the Trans Canada Trail through his own farm and was fined for doing so. Bad bureaucratic attitude about horses in Quebec. Strange.


June 6, 2007

Steve and Levi rode beside the secondary highway through numerous villages. We entered Quebec and stayed with Marcel Ouelette near the Quebec/NB line.

June 5, 2007

Stayed at Madawaska Maliseet Reserve for the day.

Levi and Ryan provided rides for children at the local gas bar. Steve rode on the Reserve and in Edmundston, talking to people on his route.

Bruce was having difficulty getting wireless Internet to connect and had the problem solved at a local computer store.

The problem of getting lost on unmarked rural roads has also been resolved with the purchase of Microsoft "Streets & Trips with GPS Locator". It works extremely well and pointpoints our location within a few metres and plots directions to our destination. Very impressive. We can now upload detailed maps to the Ride website, soon.

The rain let up for awhile but returned with a vengeance of lightning and hail. It is passing. Levi and Ryan went to the local gym working out. Levi won 3rd place in the Atlantic Body Building competition in May, two years after having a heart attack and a quadruple coronary bypass.

Steve cooked a gourmet salmon dinner with salad and boil potatoes.

We are eating well and staying in excellent, if varied, accomodations. Being away from junk food and being physically active has helped Bruce lose weight put on during years in front of a computer. Stiff muscles have also disappeared.

Regie Oulette from NB Trails met us at the Rec Centre. Tomorrow we leave for Lac Baker.
June 4, 2007

Tobique Maliseet First Nation

Met many of the tribal counsellors at the home of Chief Bear. Bruce and Claudia presented at the Wellness Centre. They were very generous in their donations and encouraged our journey. More rides provided to the children.

Left Tobique Maliseet First Nation with full fuel tanks and headed to Edmunston. It began to rain.

Called Chief Joanna Bernard of the Madawaska Maliseet First Nation to confirm our arrival. She provided stable and pasture for the horses and the modern community Recreation Centre for our accommodations. There is a Day Care centre in the basement but we had the main floor with kitchen for our own use. Laundry done.

June 3, 2007

Met many of the reserve residents and enjoyed lunch with Chief Gerald Bernard's family. Horseback rides were provided to many of the community children at the local ball field.
Steve and Levi worked on their trailers. Steve's electric trailer brakes stopped working. Now fixed. Corroded wiring.

Bruce had a long conversation with Chief Bear about the issues on the Reserve and his plans. He was elected in October. He is obviously most capable and as an experienced businessman, is well on the way to putting the reserve back on a sound financial footing. He also owns the local radio station.

They are involved in a land claims issue where some 12,000 acres of land were stolen from them, leaving them only 5,000 acres for the entire reserve. Even former Prime Minister Mulroney admitted on a TV program that their land had been stolen. It is too bad it hasn't been dealt with before now. There will be an interesting event in July. Watch for it.

Steve, Levi and Ryan stayed with the horses in town while Claudia and Bruce stayed with the Chief and his family at their home. Bruce video taped some comments by the Chief and the Chief will send in additional video to be added to the Ride documentary.

The Chief's wife, Tina, is a teacher by profession but expressed her frustration with trying to get help for students who have been abused at home.

Chief Bear called Chief Joanna Bernard of the Madawaska Reserve at St. Basil beside Edmunston. She invited us to stay on the Reserve.

May 31, 2007

Spent the day at St. Mary's Reserve at the Mall and the ball field. They filled our vehicles with fuel for the trip and provided moose burgers and roast. Levi and Ryan decided to join us for the trip to Six Nations to participate in the June 23rd Grand Entry for their Powwow.

May 30, 2007

Claudia and Bruce met Premier Shawn Graham and were invited to sit in the House with the Members and were introduced to the New Brunswick Legislature by the Minister of Health. He was concerned that the FASD funds were not reaching the grassroots level but being absorbed by the bureaucracy. Grassroots organizations can get $100 worth of work from a $1 investment while bureaucrats and get $1 worth of work from a $100 investment.

Steve, Levi and Ryan rode from the Oromocto Reserve to the St. Thomas University Campus. Paul Jorgensen of the NB Trails Association joined the riders in Lincoln.

Fredericton Mayor, Brad Woodside, and John Howard Society representative, Ann Wagner, welcomed the riders and spoke at the gathering at St. Thomas University. Mayor Woodside read the Proclamation. A number of local riders joined us on campus. The riders then rode through Fredericton and across the old rail bridge to St. Mary's Reserve, stopping to chat with the public along the way.

We spent the night on the David and Shelly Dumphy farm beside the St. Johns River near Taymouth. Delightful couple. Fine food. Comfortable accommodations.

Friday, June 1, 2007

Moncton, NB to Oromocto, NB

May 29, 2007

While Steve, Levi and Robert rode in the Oromocto area, Bruce and Claudia attended to preparing for the events at the NB Legislature and St. Thomas University. Tried to get Internet access to update the website, Blog and download thousands of backlogged E- mails. Frederickton has installed a wireless cloud covering much of the downtown area. Signal a bit too weak where we were but finally went to Future Shop where we could access a very strong wireless signal and get the majority of the access we needed.


May 28, 2007
Rain in middle of the night. Steve put horses in trailer. Flint got tangled up and started kicking the trailer. Big bangs. Steve yelled and they settled down, for a few minutes. Then the kicking began again. Steve got up and tied the horses to separate trees about 40 feet apart. Silence. Heavy rain over night.

Hot camp coffee under the tarp for breakfast. Ate hemp and cashew chocolate bar. Rain let up and we broke camp. Drove to Oromocto/Gagetown Military Base.

Rain cleared about noon and we packed and left. Shoveled up the horse dung and hay and fertilized the woods.

Met Levi at Oromocto Mall. Steve put horses into pasture. We stayed with Levi Sabatis and Melissa Goddard on the Oromocto Reserve. Moose steak and deer chops for dinner. Delicious. Laundry.

Have permission to go to the Oromocto Mall on Tuesday for ride about. We will check out Community Access Centre to get Internet access and update the Blog and website. Hair cut. Got mattress air pump at Canadian Tire.

May 27, 2007
Rode from Sussex about 35 km. Beautiful sunny day. Over several mountains. Bought some emu jerky at Silver Shoes Emu Farm.

Stayed on Grand Lake in Lakeside Campground. Privatized former Provincial Park. No charge. Happy to help the ride any way possible. Rain warning overnight so strung the huge white tarp and placed the tents under. Steve made salmon casserole. Very good.

May 26, 2007
Sussex, NB

Stayed at Sussex PLP Show Centre. Stables, tent. Western reigning training in progress. Reporter Atlantic Horse Country magazine. Shots at covered bridge, the "Kissing Bridge", built in 1908. Local youth trained their horses to ride through the bridge without stopping during the day. However, they also trained them to stop in the middle at night to steal a kiss from their beau/belle. The bridge is also known as Kennebecasis # 7.5, Salmon 1908.


May 25, 2007

Moncton, NB,

Centennial Park event. Best Start joined us. Many families brought their children for rides.

Joined by Mel Cormier. Mel has been instrumental in many contacts in New Brunswick. She is a very active and experienced horse trainer. She has been participating in event from Moncton to Fredericton and will re-join the ride in Saskatchewan.

Truro, NS to Dorchester, NB

May 24, 2007

Chandler House in Dorchester, NB was built in 1831.

Steve and little girl at Pain du College Bakery at Memramcook, NB.

Stayed overnight at Five Elms Riding Stable. Hosts Guy and Cheryl Gosselin. Slept in bunkhouse for summer students.


May 23, 2007

Met Paul Jorgensen of the New Brunswick Trails Association in the marsh before Sackville, NB. Steve and Paul rode through the covered bridge.

Paul Jorgenson, Executive Director, New Brunswick Trails Association.

Paul and Steve riding toward the covered bridge and downtown Sackville.

Steve’s horse, Dash, drinking from the antique horse trough in Sackville, NB.

Deputy Mayor and counselor, people from NB Trails Association, and media.

Global TV reporter, Jennifer, had her first ride on a horse.

River at Sackville is a deep tidal inlet from the Bay of Fundy.


May 22, 2007
Rode with Lucy Gallant’s students into Amherst, NS to be greeted by the Mayor, counselors, members of the NB Trails Association and the media. Steve met the father of an old friend from BC. He is a lawyer in Amherst.

Stayed overnight with Drs. Gillian and Tony Lawrence on their farm outside Amherst. Dr. Gil Lawrence is a GP and runs a therapeutic riding program for children. Dr. Tony Lawrence retired from General Surgery 12 years ago.

The farm was established in 1798 with a log cabin. When the present house was built, the owners tried to move the log cabin across the river to use as a bunkhouse. It broke through the ice and was lost.

The main barn contains a large arena. There were more than a dozen horses milling about with two vying for dominance. Steve ran into the arena and charged at the most aggressive horse, chasing it into a corner and trapping it as he would a cow from a herd. He established himself as the leader of the herd and the aggressive horse sulked in a corner while the rest of the herd followed Steve like a pack of puppies. It was quite amazing.

Wonderful meal and great conversation.

May 21, 2007

Ev and Sharon Miller, Wentworth Centre, NS. They have franchised the Needs Stores in Wentowrth Centre and Amherst. Invited us to stay with them at their home. Steve and the horses stayed with Boyd Little.

Sharon and Ev rescued a newborn fawn when they saw it fall from a bridge. Bucket thrived in their care while waiting to be released back to the wild. They they discovered the buck was a she, so renamed her Buckette. Buckette still visits their home on a regular basis but is free to roam the woods.

Sharon should be a stand-up comedian.



May 20, 2007
Arlene and Tony Miller, Bible Hill / Truro NS

Tony and Arlene Miller have a lovely farm on top of Bible Hill on Old Coach Road. Dogs Finnigan and Mini. Donkey Eeor. Parrots. One parrot keeps plucking out his feathers. Very talkative bird. Says "Hello"when he wants attention.

We finally have Internet access and are able to start the Blog. Can't get access to the FASlink website. Need WS-FTP and IP number. Re-activate the brightsgrove@yahoo.com FASlink membership ID so I can get browser E-mail. However, I still need to get access for my laptop to use Eudora to download the regular mail.

Tony and Arlene are wonderful hosts, providing a full dinner and large country breakfast.
When Steve was riding through torrential rain to Wentworth Centre, Tony and Arlene brought dinner to the Needs Store in Wentworth Centre.

Arlene and Tony Miller