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New Brunswick: 'the bilingual cousin from back east'

© By CTC News Staff
Bay Of Fundy
Bay of Fundy

Canada's only officially bilingual province? Not Quebec, but New Brunswick, bien sûr. The English/French split is around 50/50. But New Brunswick French, you can't help notice, sounds different. Like you've just dropped into Lafayette, Louisiana and ordered the catfish. That's Acadian ("Cajun" as they say down south). The settlers of New France were purged by the British in the mid-18th century (the local Mi'kmaq Aboriginals fared even worse), and the places on New Brunswick's north coast they were pushed to-or found their way back to-are now some of the prettiest and most interesting villages in Atlantic Canada.
     Call it the watermark province: rivers and ocean have imprinted New Brunswick. Defined it. Look around and see. The famed "flowerpots" in Hopewell Rocks near Moncton: squat little islands that, when the water recedes, become towering sandstone columns sculpted by those world-beating Bay of Fundy tides. (Those same tides create strange natural phenomena like the "reversing falls" near Saint John. The full-flood tide trumps the river and pushes it backward.) Or, again, the rugged shore of Grand Manan Island. For literally hundreds of species of migratory birds it's a touchdown point, a chair in a dance marathon.
     In some places, New Brunswickers have picked up the finishing brush themselves. Madison County, for example, has nothing on Carleton County, NB, home to the world's longest covered bridge. The province has 62 covered bridges, most dating from the early 1900s, and you can put together a nifty drive-and-shoot tour from the good maps available.
     For sure, New Brunswick's famed Restigouche and Miramichi Rivers shaped not just the banks they cut, but the settlers and traders they carried and fed. More recently, they've fed less hardscrabble types like Tom Cruise and Jack Nicklaus, who've joined the pilgrimage to these world-famous salmon rivers. David Adams Richards once explained why he sets so much of his fiction in the Miramichi Valley. Rugged yet poetic, it says all he wants to say about what it means to be human.

Hopewell Rocks
Hopewell Rocks

New Brunswick in a nutshell:
· Official slogan: "Maritime Magnifique!"
· Nickname: "The Loyalist Province" (after the American settlers that founded St. John)
· Written in stone by: David Adams Richards, Antonine Maillet, Bliss Carmen
· Other native sons and daughters: former Governor General Roméo Leblanc, former teen idol Roch Voisine, former body snatcher Donald Sutherland.
· Lyrics by: Stompin' Tom Connors, Julie Doiron
· Local fare: a kind of cinnamon roll called pets de soeurs (you look it up), Atlantic salmon, meat pie, fiddlehead omelette
· Local tipple: Alpine lager (by Moosehead)
· French immersion: the historic Acadian town of Caraquet (time your visit for the Le Festival acadien de Caraquet (Acadian Festival) in August)
· Contemplative space: the beach on historic Miscou Island
· Physics-defying curiosity: Magnetic Hill
· Reading list: Lines in the Water: A Fisherman's Life on the Mirimachi (Richards), La Sagouine (Maillet)
· Festivals: Summer: Fiddles on the Tobique festival
· Winter: World Pond Hockey Championships, in Plaster Rock (February)

· Acadian Festival in Caraquet http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9SoueOQfdmk
· Festival Acadien http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5cw-kxuzX38&feature=youtube_gdata
· Le Pays De La Sagouine (English) http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-yfqAJ6PJz8
· Le Pays De La Sagouine (French) http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RQUJRoVKajs
· Hopewell Rocks and the Bay of Fundy http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PoRwlncuyxk
· Urban Moncton http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fiE5_OdbzFM
· Les atouts de la ville de Moncton http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HwKokuMdtNo

Photo Credits
Courtesy of Canadian Tourism Commission

If you go
New Brunswick
as seen on
Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/New_brunswick
Wikitravel: http://wikitravel.org/en/New_Brunswick
New Brunswick Tourism: www.tourismnewbrunswick.ca

What's happening, money, distance, time?
Media Guide: http://www.abyznewslinks.com/
Currency conversion: http://www.xe.com/ucc/
Distance calculator: http://www.indo.com/distance/
Time zone converter: http://www.timezoneconverter.com/

Transportation, visas, health, maps and temperature
Airlines (Wikipedia): http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_airlines
Embassies/Consulates (Embassy World): http://www.embassyworld.com/
Health precautions (WHO): http://www.who.int/ith/en/
Google interactive map: http://maps.google.com/
Temperature (Temperature World): http://www.temperatureworld.com/


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