Friday, September 16, 2011

Heading to the Soo – Day 20

I headed out from Thunder Bay bright and early with Sault Ste Marie as my destination for the day. It was cool and overcast, quite the contrast from the weather to date but it made for pleasurable riding. I stopped in Nipigon for a coffee and breakfast sandwich – you know there is something to be said about riding a 100 Kms before breakfast – sure makes it taste good!
German tourist - Michael
A German tourist named Michael, the Ratbiker
While there I met a German tourist named Michael AKA Ratbiker. He is riding a 1982 Suzuki GS580G – painted flat black with his web site address in yellow across the tank.

We got to talking and he said he was heading to the Cabot Trail and so we agreed to share some time on the road.  After finishing breakfast, we headed towards the Soo and at Pays Plat we took in the Pow Wow. One of the elders took time to share with us the history of his 108 year old drum, handed down to him from a medicine man or shaman – this elder was also a shaman.
 younger generation drum
We listened to the younger generation drum and sing and took in the vendors that were setting up.

Here is the video I took of  the drummers and singers at the Pays Plat Pow Wow:
Hand painted feathers
Hand painted feathers

A fabulous artist by the name of Sharon Girdwood had many of her handi works on display with each hand painted feather, each pencil drawing telling a story of her ancestor’s heritage and beliefs.   

Visit her site and be prepared to be moved!

There were all kinds of trinkets on display as well, everything from medicine and tobacco pouches to hand beaded necklaces and dream catchers. 

My German companion found the Pow Wow as interesting as I did and we discussed the beauty of the culture of the native community.

Pretty soon it was time to saddle up and head out – Sault Ste Marie here we come!

The highway was filled with bikes and at one of our fuel stops Michael commented that his arm was sore from waving!

My hotel room was very comfortable – the Comfort Inns does a very good job of being consistent in their basic amenities and their room and bed quality. I unpacked cameras, charged batteries, and unpacked my lap top, set up coffee for the morning, brushed my teeth and hit the bed. 

Linda - so warm and caring...
One of my most farvourite things about staying at this particular Comfort Inn are two very special ladies, Judy in the breakfast room and Linda on the front desk.

Judy, she serenades  you while you eat, always a joke at the ready, a true gem!
Judy is this vivacious lady with a clear singing voice, a sharp wit and a love of entertaining and serving. Judy goes about her job making customers feel like they have spent time with grandma, a favourite aunt or a sister depending on your age, she sings you through the morning brightening your day! She has an infectious sense of humour too!  And then there is Linda. Not only did she remember me from last year but her service was just as friendly and just as bang on the money as it was last year.

It was truly an enjoyable stay – the breakfast was great as usual, the service was wonderful and I look forward to staying another time in the near future.
If you should find yourself in the Sault Ste Marie region of Ontario, I hope you check this place and its amazing staff out.

Comfort Inn
333 Great Northern Road
Sault Ste Marie ON P6B 4Z8
Latitude: 46.5350192
Longitude: -84.3187734
PH: (705) 759-8000
Fax: (705) 759-8538

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