Flew into Halifax yesterday with Sharon. The overnight flight is a bit cramped and neither of us managed to sleep so we arrived at 6:30am local time, hooked up with Sharon’s friend Colleen, and immediately fell asleep at her place.

Once we were awake a refreshed we took a walk through the boardwalk, the farmer’s market (where I found delicious blueberry chocolates), and downtown. Then back to Colleen’s for one of the many local beer’s she’d stocked for us and over to the Wooden Monkey for dinner. The Wooden Monkey is a tasty place with vegan options and some excellent beers (such as the PumpHouse blueberry ale) on tap.

The main event planned for Saturday night was to see Alan Doyle (of Great Big Sea) perform at The Casino which turned out to be an actual casino with a large ballroom for the show. They’d lined up rows of chairs but I felt more like we were walking into a sales convention than a concert. When Alan came out with his band any thought of boring sales conventions disappeared. Those guys rocked it out! Kendell Carson was playing fiddle, which was cool because she’s from Vancouver and we last saw her guesting with the Deep Dark Woods at the Biltmore. The whole band was on fire and super-tight. The highlight for me was their cover of John Mellancamp’s Paper in Fire, which gave me chills to hear how powerfully they played it.

After the show Colleen suggested we check out Bearly’s House of Blues where Garrett Mason, the son of a local blues legend, was sharing the stage with another local blues talent, Keith Hallett. Fantastic show! They reminded me a little of The Smalls reincarnated as a blues band. Mostly I think because two of the guys looked pretty workmanlike with their dirty trucker caps and flannel shirts. Anyhow, they rocked this little blues bar and I’m envious that Halifax has such a cool place to see shows.

Now we’re awake on Sunday morning (actually afternoon local time) and are about to head to Peggy’s Cove.