Wednesday, 12 August 2015
On getting to Kingston and what I did there
On the ferry, we held our arms out from our bodies to let the breeze dry our sweat. This devolved into pretending to be cormorants drying our wings. After the ferry, I left the Parents to proceed at their pace whilst I sped ahead. At Finkle's Park, I chanced upon a couple of young guys on their way to Maine from Seattle. Joel was riding a bike from 1975 that must of have been older than he was! Like a number of the cycle tourers I have met on this trip, they didn't have front racks. Now that I think of it, MEC only had one model for sale. Joel and his buddy Gabe looked like they had started out from Seattle clean shaven but had left their razors behind. ;-)
While parking my park in Cookie's garage, I noticed that her rear mudguard had seen better days. Over supper, I inquired if I might repay her hospitality (we would be there for two nights) by replacing her rear mudguard. She graciously declined. Mummy then made an ungracious about how men always want to weigh down women's bikes with "unnecessary" bits and pieces. This was a clear reference to my attempts to get her to carry a second water bottle in a cage and when I installed a rear mudguard on her bike as a Christmas gift for the benefit of herself and Désirée who would be starting to be hauled in a bike trailer by Mummy and others. (I felt that it would hard on Désirée to get sand in her face.) It has been two years since the trailer was retired and Mummy hasn't removed the mudguard. Hence, I found her comment a bit unfair.
We talked about plans for the rest day on the morrow. I mentioned I was going to see the Meagher house plaque which I had seen unveiled in 1984 with Granny. Cookie being an long time Kingston resident, produced a book about the buildings of Kingston which included it. I noted some particulars. The next day, we split up to do our own things: Pappy wanted to read chez Cookie, Mummy and I both had museums in mind but in different ones at least at first. We also items to buy and we agreed to meet for lunch at an Indian restaurant with Cookie. My first stop was the first I came across: Fort Henry. It is a splendid example of mid 19th century fortification and its only actual use was to house prisoners from the 1837-38 uprisings and enemy aliens during the First World War. There was a traveling exhibition about the latter. I fell into a guided tour which cunningly took us through the old bakery which was still being used to bake mouth-wateringly delicious smelling bread available for purchase in the gift shop, no free samples available. ;-) The fort had been designed quite cunning and cold bloodedly with carronades positioned to grape shot into the ditch from positions in the outside wall which were accessed via a tunnel from inside the fort. Unexpectedly, the fort was mainly designed to withstand an assault from the landward side rather than the river as an amphibious assault would be so much easier to repel. As I left, one of the tour guides in period uniform brought out a goat graze on the the lawn. I joked to another guides/guards: "Ah, the Regimental lawn mower." I bought a wonderfully tacky guardsman T-shirt and some baked goods.