There’s no doubt about it, the love of our fair island runs deep. In a province beloved for its red sand beaches, world-class seafood, potatoes, and Anne of Green Gables, there are no greater fans of this land than Islanders themselves! This week as PEI paused to celebrate the bliss of such a place, we took the opportunity to reflect on all things uniquely PEI in honour of Islander Day. There is no end to the heartwarming and sometimes humorous quirks of living on a small island, and we love every single one of them!
A little Island slang
We’re not going to lie… yes, we islanders have our own secret language. It may be totally unintentional, but to us, it’s obvious that slippy means slippery, “turn left at the purple house” is the only way to give directions, and a sharp inhale as a response instead of saying “yes” is just natural! And just in case you need it, here’s a little refresher from CBC to help understand our lingo.
We’re pretty close-knit…
Six degrees of separation is no match for PEI! Here on the island you can pretty well figure out how you’re connected to a person with one single question: “Who’s yer’ father?” …No seriously, who is he? We might be related.
A real Island welcome!
Not only will you find cows in the fields, you’ll also be welcomed to PEI by Bessie the Cow in the Charlottetown Airport! And did you know that if all the cows in the field are laying down, it’s a sure-sign that rain is on its way?
Traffic jam with a twist
City traffic really isn’t a concern here in PEI, however we’re not without our own travel issues. Tractor traffic is a very real thing! (and rest assured – there is an etiquette!)
What’s a paved shoulder?
Even the side of the road here is green! Or sometimes red. Often both. This gentle island is sand and sandstone through and through, so no gravel shoulder either!
There are some classic PEI foods that just can’t be beat – mustard pickles, meat pie, rapure, not to mention, every single ‘Burger Love’ burger… we can’t get enough! But as far as the classics go, the oyster rules them all, and with more oyster varieties than you can shake a stick at, the west of the island is called Canada’s Oyster Coast for good reason. All together now: Shuck. Slurp. Repeat.
A whole lot of love for lobster
And speaking of classic PEI foods, lobster is a way of life! We celebrate Setting Day like our own little Christmas. Mother’s Day cannot be observed without the first feed of the season. Lobster rolls, boiled lobster, grilled lobster, lobster mac and cheese… busloads of people wait each day during the season to feast at the New Glasgow Lobster Suppers! We’re obsessed, but can you blame us?
Our favourite cup of tea!
PEI is known for its spectacular coastlines, and the cliffs made of bright red sand are truly breathtaking. Over time, islanders have noticed a few very distinct sandstone formations along our beaches and have grown, well… a little attached to them! From the “Teacup” at Thunder Cove, to the “window” along Cavendish Beach, to the original “Elephant Rock” (which we all mourned the loss of as erosion had its way); these celebrity sea stacks and sandstone formations are PEI icons!
A warm and cozy welcome
If you’ve ever seen the island from above with your own two eyes, you know it is truly a sight to behold! Fields of green, yellow, and red are tidily sown, grown and harvested with love and care. As you fly over the island on your way into Charlottetown Airport, think of the patchwork quilt you see below as a cozy hug welcoming you to PEI! We sure do.
We’ve got that PEI pride!
We’re no strangers to hard work on PEI, but we islanders have a deep pride and gratitude for our farmers and fisherman who work tirelessly, day in and day out. We celebrate them on setting day, worry for them in bad weather, thank them during harvest, congratulate them on landing day, and we owe so much to them at every meal.
A toe-tappin’ good time!
What would a get-together be without a good ol’ kitchen party? Grab your guitars, fiddles, and don’t forget your pair of spoons – they’re the instrument that really gets the party started!
Our one true love
When the cool-front blows in…
While Old Home Week is Charlottetown’s annual festival of full of food and fun, it’s also so much more than that. This week-long festival in August is a marker of time, a reunion (homecoming, if you will), and more than anything, it’s a sign to mother nature that it’s time to turn down the summer heat as the dog days of summer come to an end. Without fail, Old Home Week is always the beginning of cooler evenings, and sweater weather as the beginning of fall draws nearer.
The unique traits of islanders and the island itself go on and on. From funny quirks, to heartwarming charm, we can always have a laugh at ourselves, while beaming with pride at the beauty of the land, and the hard work it takes to make PEI what it is: a national treasure. We love Prince Edward Island and we wouldn’t dream of not celebrating it with every chance we get!