Today was full moon. It was also my 51st birthday. Surely the weather gods would smile upon me today and the luck would change? Again we checked every 3 hours and again the weather was unfit for flying. I went down to Chebucto Head where there was a small abandoned lighthouse, some nice sea cliffs with waves crashing. The light was again flat, but I tried to photograph some seascapes without involving the sky. It was hard to be enthusiastic shooting tidepools with the days at Sable slipping through my grasp. I began to think that all of my photography luck had been used up in Alaska, and now I was getting my share of poor conditions.
After a couple of hours down in the tidepools I climbed back up the rocks to the parking lot. I discovered a middle aged Asian man meditating in the lotus position on the cement platform of the lighthouse. He offered me a friendly greeting and inquired about my images. Yau-Sun Tong, a qigong and taichi instructor, is also a tour guide for photography trips to western China, Mongolia and Tibet. A native of western China he takes his tours off the beaten path, and proceeded to show me a collection of photos on his little Leica point-and-shoot. They were spectacular! Chance meetings like this often result in future connections, so we exchanged business cards. He was very gracious in recommending other places in Nova Scotia for great landscapes and I sensed that this would not be my last meeting with Yau-Sun.
On his recommendation we drove up towards the Bay of Fundy, passing wonderful old Acadian farmlands. The early Acadian settlers drained the vast salt water flats by diking them, thus producing highly fertile lands for their farms. When they were deported by the British in the mid 1700’s they left with only that which they could carry.
Many went south into the United States and down to Louisiana where they became the ‘Cajuns’ a slurred version of ‘Acadians’. We carried on to the coast of the Minas Basin where we were treated to low tide and the dark red cliffs of clay capped by bright green fields. Again the light was disappointing, but we enjoyed the experience nonetheless. We came across a pier of fishing boats that had docked at high tide, but in typical Bay of Fundy fashion, were now resting at low tide in the red mud some 15 feet below the pier. The drive was scenic and peaceful and we kept shooting until the last light disappeared. My birthday passed unnoticed.