Sunday, August 17, 2008

Sussex (updated)

The latest overnight sojourn was to beautiful bucolic Sussex, heart of New Brunswick's dairy industry and a region of rolling farmland and charming, Norman-Rockwell small towns. We were in town for a friend's wedding. The friend is "Molly", a former co-worker now living in Alberta, and she had invited a bunch of us who she used to work with to attend.

Actually, we thought we were going to a wedding in Sussex, as the bride had always said that's where she is from. Closer inspection of the invitation prior to heading out, however, notified us that we'd actually be attending the ceremony and reception in Waterford, which, if Sussex is understood to be the boonies, is real Deliverance country to city folks like us. ("Mom, there are no bars on my phone!" my co-worker's horrified teenage daughter announced to her. "It says, 'No Service'!" "It's even worse than that," her mother said to her mischievously. "'Molly's' Mom and Dad don't even have high-speed internet!" Her daughter looked like she was paralyzed, torn between bursting into tears of pity and striking out, right now, for civilization.)

The wedding coincided with the weekend of the Sussex Flea Market, held every year by the NB Antique Auto Club. Poking around the web I see there are more than 1,000 tables at this annual market. All I know is it is damned big - a half football field or so of tables on one side, and two big warehouses of tables on the other side. Naturally it's impossible to take a picture of such a thing unless you can get an aerial shot, but here's a gratuitous snap.

My old health issues make extended periods of walking challenging to impossible, so I hung around for the first fifteen minutes and then left Husband to his thing while I wandered around Sussex by auto.

I mentioned that Sussex is widely known locally for being New Brunswick's dairy capital. What we didn't know when we got there is that Sussex has other ideas. A sign at the entrance to down declared that it was the "Mural Capital of Canada" and they're not kidding. They've pretty much painted something on every available vertical surface.

A tribute to the Royal Family. Yes, that's Princess Anne on a horse.

A train-themed mural. It was on the side of a complex of Edwardian office and retail buildings, though. Maybe they were train-related once upon a time.

One on the side of a private home overlooking a park, in the heart of the downtown business district. These are obviously only samples - there are dozens of murals all over town.

This one - of a fire station - was on the Fire Station. It includes a nice little piece of trompe l'oeil - I thought the man and boy in the lower right-hand corner were real people examining the mural until I was very close to them.

So that was a neat weekend but I think Husband and I are both exhausted with this routine of working all week and traveling all weekend. We're sticking close to home for the next little while. (I'm painfully conscious that I haven't blogged about our trip to Nova Scotia's Acadian shore, but it's on my to-do list for sure. Right now - I got to get some sleep!)

Incidentally, the wedding was lovely, the bride glowed, the groom grinned, and a good time was had by all. The main course was bison, in honour of the groom's western roots and the couple's current home base of Alberta. The people at the wedding were inordinately kind to us strangers, especially "Molly's" parents, who found our little group of city-slicker Molly ex-co-workers after the ceremony and personally led us in their car to the reception site. We found our way back to the concrete jungle, cellphone bars were restored, and another little piece of our province is now known to us, and part of our memories.


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Blogger Mike said...

If they're only the Mural Capital of Canada, I wonder what it's like in the Mural Capital of the World.

But if I went there, I wouldn't stand still too long. At least, not if I were wearing clothes I cared about.

5:14 a.m.  

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