As we finished torquing the last bolt in our couchbike frame, a police car turned up the road and stopped for a moment by our stack of cargo. Through his rear window I could see his head shaking as though refusing to believe his eyes. Tucked away as we were in the quiet lane, we avoided his detection and were therefore spared the embarrassment of rehashing the events of our near catastrophe. The officer drove off without any closer inspection.

We hit the road again. As the day wore on, we regained our confidence and were enjoying the simultaneous experiences of physical activity, and relaxed lounging. The maritime scenery was beautiful and the people in the passing motor homes were as much a source of amusement for us as we seemed to be for them.

Two boys on the couchbike in Baie-Ste-Anne, New Brunswick

Nearing the town of Baie-Sainte-Anne, we were just beginning to look for a place to camp when a Police cruiser pulled along side us. He rolled down his passenger side window and in a resigned tone, said "I don't want to be a stickler... but I don't think that thing's legal. And if that's a bicycle, you guys should have helmets on." Yes, yes -- the helmet issue. That was something we had debated at length before our departure. Our two main questions had seemed to answer themselves, "How fast are we ever really going to be traveling on a 95 pound couch?" and "Isn't there already an excess of padding on this thing anyway?"

Of course, after having been launched into flight on our unassuming couch, the flaws in our logic had been made abundantly clear. We assured the police officer that we would be picking up some helmets in the next town. With that, he pulled ahead and was gone.