A couple from Virginia travelling in Cape Breton realized this week that Maritime hospitality goes beyond a welcoming smile and nice words.

Mike Evans and his girlfriend had stepped off a Big Bras d'Or boat tour, ate lunch and headed out on the Cabot Trail. After travelling more than a hour, they stopped for gas at the Wreck Cove General Store and Gas Bar.

That's when Evans discovered he'd lost his credit card.

Store owners Brent Partland and Jenn Rhodes immediately offered to help.

Sprang into action

"We just sprung into action. Jenn grabbed the phone book, found the boat tour he had been on — it was the Bird Island boat tour — but they didn't have it," Partland told CBC's Maritime Noon on Wednesday.

Partland then asked the couple where they ate after the boat tour, and made another call. 

Brent Partland and Jenn Rhodes

Brent Partland and Jenn Rhodes are the owners of Wreck Cove General Store and Gas Bar. (Facebook)

It turned out the lost credit card was at Fitzgerald's Restaurant in Boularderie. To save the tourists the two-hour trip out of their way to retrieve the card, Partland made an offer. 

"I just said to them, 'You know what folks, I'm going to be heading into town tomorrow, I can pick up your card for you,'" Partland said.

Not a big deal

The couple, who were staying in nearby Ingonish, were "floored" when they met up with Partland the next day and he handed over their card.

"He tried to give me a cash reward a few times and I refused it. That's not why I did it. I did it so he could continue to enjoy his vacation, not for any monetary gain, that's for sure."

Evans then wrote a thank you letter that was posted on Facebook.

"The people of Nova Scotia's reputation for being good and kind people is confirmed once again," he wrote.

Partland said he didn't mean for the act of kindness to become a big deal.

"For us, it's just the way we do things out here. We try to live as honourably as possible. If somebody comes in and needs help or anything, we try to help them out."

Social responsibility

Living in the remote community near the northern tip of Cape Breton brings a sense of responsibility, Partland said.

"We live on premises with the gas station so we'll get phone calls at all hours of the night, people knocking on the door, needing gas or needing this or needing that.

"We open up for them. That's just part of who we are, what we have to do out here."

With files from Maritime Noon