Bear with me: I’m not a writer, but I like history. If you don’t like history, or feel like reading something well-written, skip on to the next post.
“Lord, thank You for the Gut of Canso, which separates us from the mainland and the wickedness thereof.”
Local lore says that this prayer was uttered by a Cape Breton priest in a service over two hundred years ago. The island and its people are still fairly sheltered and homogeneous. Seeing that the causeway o’er the Strait was only built in 1955, I can see how there are still people living who have never left the island (and many who have no interest in doing so).
Prior to the building of the Canso Causeway (which now connects us to the mainland, and the wickedness thereof), a journey from Sydney to Halifax took incredibly long. One particularly famous journey took 23 hours to make the 450km trek, including a two hour battle with the icy waters in the Strait, and a five-hour wait in Truro for cargo. I don’t know about you guys, but I ain’t spending 23 hours in a train to make it to the Mic Mac Mall.
On top of making the ferries obsolete (which had previously transported trains, cars, cargo and people across the Strait) the building of the causeway also had an inadvertent side-effect: the creation of an ice-free harbour. The north and south sides of the causeway are now supposed to have a 1 degree difference in temperature, which results in the south side being entirely ice-free throughout the winter. This photo was taken of the southern part of the harbour.
While I’m sure glad the causeway was built to get us to and from civilization (and the wickedness thereof), and I understand that the island and its sheltered-ness has its problems, I do appreciate the beauty and uniqueness of the Island and its culture.
I realise I’ve already posted this photo recently, but I wanted to submit it for #insideyourtown’s “Water” assignment
Gut of Canso, NS