Cape Breton_The Enduring Island

25 Oct

Cape Breton Home of our Hearts


Sometimes, what’s most noteworthy about a place is what hasn’t changed. In an age that champions what’s new, now and next, a visit to Nova Scotia’s Cape Breton is a refreshing celebration of resilience.

The 42-foot fishing boat Le Godouque bobs serenely on the Gulf of St. Lawrence, off the west coast of Cape Breton Island, Nova Scotia. It’s a cold day, but one the lobster fishermen here call good because there’s no wind to cause waves. A steep coastline runs along the port side; a bald eagle perches calmly on a jagged rock above the frothing surf.

Sheldon Deveau, 27, was born on this vast, remote, eastern Canadian island and already has a decade of experience as a professional fisherman under his belt. He shares the profession with his late grandfather and his father, Daniel, who sits in the captain’s seat. They port Le Godouque at a pier just south of the village of Chéticamp, the Deveaus’ hometown.

“Look here,” Sheldon says, using one gloved hand to prod a lobster freshly snatched from a trap. “The water’s too cold, right? They’re barely moving. Only way to catch ’em is to drop a trap right on top.”

Right now — on an unheated boat just before 6 a.m. — my empathy lies with the lobster. I, too, am cold and sluggish. Rain threatens constantly. Thick, low-hanging clouds make it easy to miss sunrise; all of a sudden you’re aware of a silvery light that makes the water look like liquid pewter.

But it is not the weather that gives a place its identity. Rather, it’s the people — a commodity as special as a perfectly carved seascape or a waterfall-rich mountain valley. Only full-time residents with a rich history can deliver the authenticity that so many travelers crave: the sense of seeing something different — and being invited to experience it.

Luckily for visitors of Cape Breton Island, the locals here have a deep reserve of unyielding pride that preserves the island’s uniqueness as a destination. Even better, they are willing — from the fishing boats to the dance halls — to share some of their quiet lives with total strangers.

The island is sparsely populated, so communities are tightly knit. More than a dozen other lobster boats ply the waters nearby, circling or bobbing alongside their buoys, and Deveau’s crew knows them all by name. If another boat approaches alongside a broadside tack, any wise crew tenses for a friendly bait fight.

Full Article:…

Cape Breton Islanders & Friends:

Cape Breton Fireside Forum: http://KrazyFella.Com

Cape Breton Fireside Blog Links:

Contact Me:


Leave a comment

Posted by on 25/10/2011 in Uncategorized


Tags: , ,

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: