Canada

Vegetable, mineral

Vegetable, mineral

I’ve been away.

Well, we’ve all been away, obviously - the last essay we posted was back in June, and it’s September now! But I’ve been back in my old home country, where I grew up.

Things are different there now - as I anticipated last year, my parents have downsized out of their Toronto home of 56 years.

This was also the first summer they didn’t spend July and August up north on the lake by themselves, they decided to was better if there were some younger folks around to help out while they were up on the island - so we drove up with them, stayed for a week, carried the groceries, and cooked. We also played some cribbage (which didn’t go so well for me)…

18 August 2018 at 01:54am (Toronto, Canada)

18 August 2018 at 01:54am (Toronto, Canada)

The sky is calling. It's time to go.

There's no clearer sign that a trip is ending than the email from your airline saying 'check in online for your flight tomorrow!'

The packing has been going on all day; and at the same time, I'm drawn back to the details of where we are, the particulars of this place, which may or may not be here when I'm next in this country. So my focus is split between putting things in bags, and appreciating my surroundings one last time…

11 August 2018 at 9:24am (Toronto, Canada)

11 August 2018 at 9:24am (Toronto, Canada)

I'm home.

Well, it's one of my homes - it feels like I have three, really: in Sydney, Toronto, and Pointe au Baril. But this is where I spent the most time, growing up.

This house has been here longer than I have; my parents bought it in 1962, and have somehow stayed here all that time - while I can't even remember all my addresses in the last 20 years, theirs has remained fixed…

4 August 2018 at 10:40am (Pointe au Baril, Canada)

4 August 2018 at 10:40am (Pointe au Baril, Canada)

Some things never change; well, not much.

I know this place. I know its history. My own history is - quite literally - written into the walls.

Living as far away as I do, these visits are much more rare than they were when we spent our summers here, swimming in the lake many times per day, playing cards, reading books, stubbing our toes on the rocks, and messing around in boats.

The Crib

The Crib

In my family, we play cards.

Not full time, obviously. But, when we get together at my parents' place on Georgian Bay - a glorified shack, really, with limited solar power & no TV or internet connection to speak of - that's when the games begin.

My parents have had an ongoing cribbage rivalry for as long as I can remember; they stay at the cottage for up to four months a year, and spend many of those evenings locked in crib battles.