Christmas is over but the tree is still standing as I attempt to retain some sparkle during the continuing dark days.
So far, this New Year is off to a rough start. The dear old dog died and I am still not over that. I catch glimmers of her dark form shuffling here and there in the shadowy corners at the edge of the back garden. My mind is playing tricks on me.
The weather this winter has not helped to cheer me. Here, it has been hovering around freezing, or a few degrees below, for the past month or so. We have been burning through an extraordinary amount of firewood. I find it quite tiresome.
Already it is time to start working on the year-end taxes, again. Next week, that idiot to the south will step into the driver’s seat. Chaos seems to reign everywhere on earth. I find myself waking up in the darkest hours, fighting off the blasted mid-night terrors! Continue reading “When in Doubt…”
Winter has arrived. Snow covers the ground like a duck down duvet. Snow hangs from the boughs of the trees and snow is beginning to fall again. It is a winter wonderland out here on the islands.
C.’s brother N. is visiting from the city. He came up to the island to help butcher the big mule deer that C. brought home from the last hunting trip of the season. Three days ago it began to snow and now N. is stuck here for the moment, trapped by the snow-obliterated road on the next island that leads to the outside world. This morning I called the fellow who maintains the roads there. He cheerfully told me that he had just got the grader repaired, and that he probably would not be able to get plowing out to the end of the road until Monday; too much snow to be dealt with first on the south end of that island. He had already been part way out by truck and had removed a fallen tree that was also blocking the route. Continue reading “Black and White…”
of a remote island dweller…and chronic tea drinker!
People who live elsewhere often ask, “What do you do all day long on your island.” How do I begin to describe a typical day in this place I call home? There are seasonal differences and a day in my life as a remote, off grid island dweller depends a lot on the weather, among other things.
Let’s take last Tuesday for example. I woke up earlier than usual with the sound of C.’s alarm clock chiming. Still dark outside, I could hear the incessant rainfall on the roof. C. had plans to leave for his annual winter camping and deer-hunting trip to the interior of the province. I needed to get up too, in order to take him and all his gear, in the skiff, down the channel, to the end of the road on the next island where our car stays when we are at home on this island. Have I mentioned that there is no ferry service to our island?
While we ate breakfast the rain stopped, temporarily, for the first time in many, many days. C. was able to load his gear into the skiff without it all getting soaked. We both got dressed for the open boat ride; layers of warm clothing topped off with heavy duty rain gear and rubber boots. From home, it’s a fifteen minute run, in a fast boat, to the end of the road. Continue reading “A Day in The Life…”
I have been away for a couple of days. It was my first trip to town on the Big Island in over a month. We were down to our last 20 pound tank of propane gas, which we use to operate the kitchen stove, so it really was time to do a town trip.
The trip to town for stocking up on fuel and provisions is a much loathed ordeal, and is fodder for a proper, longer story. Today I was not planning to write about town trips so I shall save that for another time.
I wanted to mention another, much nicer story, before any more time passed and the subject became totally irrelevant; while it was still fresh in my mind.
At the beginning of this week it was Halloween, the first dry day in about a month as luck would have it. Halloween is a much celebrated occasion in neighbourhoods across the country and beyond. When we were kids we used to love getting dressed up in funny costumes. We used to go out just before dark and parade around the streets, knocking on neighbour’s doors and calling out trick or treat, holding out the inevitable old pillow cases, begging for sweet surprises. Continue reading “Trick or Treat!”
There is nothing quite as sweet as arriving home after having been away for a while. Several days ago I returned home after a long road trip. I left a couple of weeks ago to travel with my sister, in her older model Ford pickup truck, empty horse trailer in tow, from another west coast island that she is soon to call home, back to her current abode more than a thousand kilometers inland and away from the coast. Continue reading “Home Sweet Home….”