How can 2 people be as lucky as we? We came into New Brunswick 2 days ago to find that the 10 day long annual Festival of the Acadians is ending today in Caraquet with their big deal, a Tintamarre which is an hour long parade of sorts with any and all kinds of noise making - a huge, big deal here, attracting about 25,000 participants. A little Mardi Gras-like - Louisiana Cajuns were from this area. All the campgrounds are full so we have been welcomed to boondock at the Tourist Info Center for free with a beautiful view of a wharf with colorful boats and a free bluegrass concert in our parking lot last night.
This morning we've biked thorugh the forest primeval, along marshes full of catails and along the pretty Chaleur Bay, ranked one of the 31 best bays in the world. The "forest primeval" I borrowed from Longfellows' poem Evangline about the Acadians. We are in the heart of the Acadian area and learning all about their history, yesterday spending the whole day in their wonderful living history museum with Acadians employed to act the parts, live the life of about the 1800's and teach the visitors their proud history. They proudy exhibit their Joie de Vivre - Joy of Life - which was more than evident at the Tintamarre. Rain did not spoil it - most people just put on raingear and opened umbrellas and others just toughed out the light rain. It was a sight to behold...and to hear.
The people here are incredibly friendly. We were invited to watch the Tintamarre from the front yard of a big group dressed as Gilligan's Island characters with a whole set in their yard. Lots of crazy costumes, hats, Acadian flags and ribbons during the festival.