A few weeks ago I was telling my sister how it was difficult to meet people here outside of those that I work with. She has a similar problem where she works so she told me about how she was going to try this meetup site. Although it sounds like online dating, it is actually just a site where people can form clubs based on mutual interests (german language, knitting, real estate investment, outdoors activities, wine, socializing, etc.). So at her suggestion, I decided to see if there was meetup in Halifax (there was!) and joined a few different groups – two for outdoorsy-type activities, one called the “wanderers” who go and wander around places (parks, museums, etc. – totally my type of group!), and one for newcomers to Halifax.
This past weekend I had the first few meetup activities I signed up for – one on Friday, one on Saturday, and one on Sunday. The first one, on Friday was with one of the outdoors groups (and seemed like one of the tamer ones compared to some of the other events they had posted). For this one, we met at the Halifax Ferry terminal, walked across the MacDonald Bridge, over to Dartmouth and to a little place called the Celtic Corner for dinner and drinks. I was feeling a little nervous about walking across the bridge. I am slightly afraid of heights, although I think my fear is more that I am afraid I am going to drop something (such as my phone) when I am up high and lose it. I realize that it would be pretty impossible for me to fall off and feel much more comfortable at a height when I am not holding anything. So, I made it across the bridge by foot with very little anxiety but in turn have no photos from the night because I didn’t want to pull out my phone to take pictures and accidentally drop it. It turned out to be a great night, (relatively) warm and not too windy, but we didn’t get to see the skyline of the city much because we were walking away from Halifax and it was still light out. I think the group is going to try again another night later in the evening to get a better view of the city skyline.
On Saturday I planned to meet up with the wandering group in the afternoon to go to the Dartmouth Heritage Museum. I looked into taking the bus because I had already driven into the city a few times this week and don’t like spending too much money on gas. But there are no express buses on the weekend so the bus was going to take about an hour. I wanted to get some exercise before I went so I had this crazy idea to ride my bike all the way in. If I had been able to ride through Burnside to Dartmouth the bike ride would only have been and hour and ten minutes, so not much longer than the bus. I realized I actually had to go through Bedford, then Halifax, then across the bridge to Dartmouth because there were a few stretches through Burnside and Dartmouth where there was only a highway and no bike lane or sidewalk. According to google maps, going around like this would take an hour and forty minutes. So I decided to do it and rushed out the door because I had just about that much time before the museum event was supposed to start. It started out well enough but I quickly ran into my first problem. To get to Sackville to Bedford, there is a very nice gravel trail. This would have been fine for my mountain bike and ice or snow would also have been fine. However, it had been getting warmer during the days recently so the snow covered trail was very slushy. I tried riding on it anyway but when my wheels started going in different directions and I was in danger of falling or slipping off the edge of the trail I decided I had to walk my bike. So this slowed down my progress a little. I felt like I was training for cyclocross though, jogging in a few places to try to make up some time. After making it through that part I continued on the long trek. I think my Exercise TV ‘buns and thighs’ yoga must have been helping because I made it all the way in, this time going across the bridge on my bike. This time across the bridge was a little scarier, maybe because I was going faster and it was slightly windier. But I made it – a half hour late, very tired, pretty dirty (from the trail and dirty snow runoff flying up off my tires on the bridge), probably pretty smelly, but feeling very accomplished. The museum was fun and I took myself and my bike back on the bus from Dartmouth to Sackville.
And lastly, on Sunday, I went on a meetup hike in Cole Harbour in the morning, followed by brunch with the group, and then wanted to go across the bridge to get a little work done at school before heading home. This time it was the Mckay bridge (the other one) and I was going the other direction (Dartmouth to Halifax this time) but it rounded out my weekend of meetup events and Halifax bridges. The only downside of this last time was that I had to pay the $1 toll to cross.
I enjoyed the bridges and got to meet some interesting people – although most were older than me – so I will definitely keep up going to meetup events and I recommend them to anyone else who is looking for fun things to do or people to meet!