writer traveler photographer


9smOh dear. There’s a time gremlin on the loose. He sneaks in through the night and steals time from me. One of these days I’ll catch up with him and he will be in deep doodoo.

Meanwhile, I’ve been on the road a lot. Also writing a number of stories for Local Xpress, including a travel column under the header: Mindful Travel.

Local Xpress is made up of the journalists, photographers, editors and fact-checkers who used to work at the Chronicle Herald. As you likely know, the CH has not given their former staff the time of day, nor entered into any meaningful negotiations. Breaks my heart.

2. The maze to the side of Joggins Fossil CentresmBut … the good news is that their former staff have founded their own online paper and I encourage every person who is reading this to support Local Xpress.

Earlier in the summer I contacted Andrea Nemetz, my former editor at The Nova Scotian (part of CH on the weekends) and, for whom I wrote both lifestyle and travel pieces. I pitched her the notion of doing a regular travel column based on travelling in some lesser-known areas of Nova Scotia.

She loved the idea and gave me a column titled “Mindful Travel” which was inspired from the blogs I did last summer when I dedicated the month of July to travelling in my own backyard (Yarmouth, Shelburne and Digby counties.)

I’ve been doing a lot of the same thing this summer, but a bit further afield … including Queens and Cumberland Counties.

Here are the four Mindful Travel stories that have been posted on Local Xpress to date:

  1. The first column, describing the raison d’être behind Mindful Travels titled: “Finding the exotic and yourself in your own backyard” is all about discovery and the joy of seeing through the heavenly visibles into the heavenly invisibles that are right under out noses … but too often missed.
  2. The second column, “The shore less travelled” focuses on Cumberland County, which is full of unexpected surprises from the Joggins Fossil Cliffs, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, to the Heritage Models Museum in River Hebert with 43 miniatures related to the heritage and culture of the region … and more.
  3. 10. Elinor Roberts enjoys greeting guests outside her summer place at the end of the Long Cove Road.cmThe third column, “An open apology to Weymouth” leads off by saying, “For years, Sandra Phinney thought Weymouth was as boring as a bottle of flat ginger ale …” As you’ll discover, after getting up close and personal with Weymouth, I had a huge helping of humble pie.
  4. Today’s column is titled, “Port Medway: a small village with a big heart (but not for everybody)” … and when you think about it, not every place is appealing to all travellers. Depends on expectations (and what turns you on!)

The photos on this page represent one photo from each story that’s been published.

Do hope you enjoy these wee travel stories. Would love to hear about your own experiences in these places … and what you think whether you’ve been to these places or not!

Meanwhile, I must commit to posting something on a more regular basis.

Have you heard about (or seen) our big bozo Great Pyrenese, Bailey? If not, I’ll get him to say a few words some day. He’s pretty lippy and has a lot of attitude but we love him just the same.



  1. Judy in Denver, CO Judy in Denver, CO
    August 28, 2016    

    Love your blog!!

    • August 29, 2016    

      Thanks for popping into view Judy.

  2. Joesy Pid Joesy Pid
    August 29, 2016    

    Sandra, I love your style of writing. It’s always informative and at times very witty. You have a very real talent when it comes to words. Love it, love it, love it.


    • August 29, 2016    

      Joesy, I dearly appreciate your comments. As you know I often panic when I look at a blank page. But once I start writing, stories seem to unfold albeit some take a LOT of revisions. Thanks for your support dear heart.

  3. Bertha Brannen Bertha Brannen
    August 29, 2016    

    Thank you for this information Sandra. Great news regarding ignored employees of CH. I have enjoyed your articles Port Medway in particular as you captured our visit plus more therefore providing an excellent occasion to recall then rebook a visit there. Love Bailey chronicles.

    • August 30, 2016    

      Appreciate you popping into view Bertha! Glad you enjoyed Port Medway. Such a charming place. And good news that you will “rebook” … might see you there! And yes, Bailey is something else, eh? Keeps me on my toes. haha.

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