September 9, 2016
I have my usual lower back pain and a headache today. It is just past noon and already I am tired. I drove into town today to pick up coffee and creamer, of course I forgot sugar. I stopped by a small artisan’s market and bought a print from a painter named Stella. Her artwork showed travel between Lillooet and Tofino, it was quite nice. She said she visited here six years ago and stayed. The eight by ten print was thirty dollars and probably the first art I have purchased for myself in years. It will need a worthy frame.
The ravens or are they crows, that were on the banks of the river yesterday are now visiting the campgrounds. They seem to like the willow tree and repeatedly argue for the highest position on it.
The city of Lillooet is not the bustling metropolis they like to promote on their videos. It is a town that has not grown much commercially in the last three years and it reminds me a lot of Paisley, Ontario.
Its biggest challenge appears to be geographical, the community is fragmented by natural terrain and this negatively impacts its small-town feel. Add to that the Main Street is four lanes wide, rather unusual in such a small town.
Despite these irregularities, I would still move here if given the chance. The climate is, for the most part, favourable, the town has all the shops and services you could need, and the people appear friendly.
I have lived in Nordegg, working at the store, for three years in October. I have money saved in retirement and savings but I don’t really trust the banks. I need to save more for retirement and plan for my future.
Afternoon – I started a fire to take off the chill in the air, it is around twenty degrees but the breeze is cold and moist.
I just finished the one hundred fourteen page “Hudson’s Bay Company Adventures” book and now I am about to start “Native Chiefs and Famous Metis” by Holly Quan. I need to start my book this fall, instead of just poetry it needs to be a work I can be proud of. I hope that the previous version of my book has been destroyed, though in a way, decades from now it could be worth a fortune. Not likely.
Evening – I am on page sixty-one of the one hundred and twenty-seven page “Chiefs” book. The settlement of Canada was much more violent and controversial than we were ever taught in school and while the Native people still do not deserve handouts in my book I do agree they were given a raw deal. They lost their land but they chose to sign and they chose to give up their identity at the time. The Dutch came to North America in the seventeenth century and the Loyalists to Canada after the American Revolution. The first mass immigration by Dutch to Canada was around the turn of the twentieth century, they adopted customs and traditions here and quickly became “Canadians”. It is not surprising then when I feel that all immigrants should adapt to our ways and not try to force us to change. If I moved to a foreign country I would expect myself to adapt to their ways. Fair is fair otherwise why would I move there to begin with?
I have traveled much in my forty-five years. I went north to Baker Lake, Nunavut, west to the Pacific Rim – Tofino and Ucluelet on Vancouver Island, south to Lexington, Kentucky and east to Ottawa, Ontario. I have slept in my car, flown in a plane, paddled in a canoe, peddled a bicycle, rode a subway, walked and crawled.
I have decided that I do not want a cat, it is not that I do not ‘want’ a cat so much as I do not want the expense of a cat. I have decided, instead, to start saving my money in preparation of a move. I know it is coming but I do not know when or to where.
The native people of this land of Sekw’el’was are called the St’at’imc. I am not sure when they settled here but they have a strong modern presence today.
Evening – I like the way this campground is set up. The trailers and motorhomes on one side and end, while the tents are in the middle and my side. Their not-really-camping-camping can be kept away from my what-is-a-generator-camping. The sun seemed to set quickly tonight and the coolness of the breeze is becoming more apparent.
While I did go on several times I have managed to limit my internet usage to twenty minutes per day. I am also following a rule of a) no work email or contacts, and b) only updating my Facebook and researching any questions asked – like, when did the Dutch come to Canada. I didn’t even look up the weather online.
The tri-pod stand would have proven useful to hold my lantern above my legs. The light, while bright enough to ward off creatures, is not high enough for writing – it is still better than fire light. The bats are out tonight and fluttering and swooping above the camp. A second ‘sunset’ is reflecting off the clouds and one of the foothills has an ominous beige mass of clouds above it. Some motorhome has landed on the site next to mine, it has enough lights on it that it looks ready for takeoff.
Tomorrow is Saturday, I suspect that this camp will fill up for the night and then return to its peaceful balance by Sunday. I have made the discovery that it is not only the brand of coffee but the whitener that makes a truly great cup of coffee, so far, I have not achieved it.
Night – I plan on staying up for several hours tonight, oh I see the moon rising over the hills. The tip of it is peeking over the hill, you can really see how fast the clouds are moving up there now. I wonder if anyone lives on the top of these hills, there are houses built about two-thirds of the way up the side.
The clouds have formed almost in serpentine bands from north to south across the entire sky. I can hear the squeaking sound of the bats in the twilight overhead. And still the citiots continue to arrive, another trying to squeeze into one of the middle sites. I am so happy my site was available and somewhat private [and that was thanks to the law of attraction by the way].
For some reason, I had two journals on the go. I found, after reading the first one, that it contained no real intent to express this new chapter in my life – so I burned it. Let the record show that it is putting up a damn good fight in the fire and after several minutes the cover is still identifiable. I took my poking stick and peeled off the cover to reveal many pages still intact. The rush of air quickly teased the flames and set the pages ablaze. To prevent any cinders escaping I placed a large cut of wood down upon the pages. The heat from the fire is quite intense now and the flames are roaring as they rapidly consume the fresh dry wood. The smoke burns my eyes and I find myself closing and opening them frequently to stave off the stinging feeling.
Later Night – I have a nice fire roaring away next to me and I am warm and happy. I should take my teeth out before it gets too late, funny it is only about half past nine as I say that.
Later Still – I can hear the whine of the veneering plant located about two kilometres west of here. In a way, it is good to know what the sound is but now it is imprinted on my brain so I pick it out of the other background noise. My fire is down to hot red coals now and I am debating extinguishing it in favour of a warm bed inside my truck.
Later still yet not midnight – I believe it is somewhere around eleven, of course, I shut down my phone before checking the time. I forwarded a couple work emails and asked for a copy of my schedule when it is available. My “away” portion of my vacation ends in just seven and a half days. I plan on returning to Nordegg by Saturday for work on Tuesday. I then must work for one week before I am off for four days to a trade show in Calgary.
A fly got trapped inside my vehicle before I remembered to close the window. I guess I should be grateful that it is only one fly and not a bat or mosquito. I am inside my somewhat soundproofed truck and I can hear people yapping outside. It is late, shut up and go to bed!
The fly has taken to buzzing past my head every few minutes to remind me it's near. A siren just sounded, not sure if it was an ambulance or something else. My alarm clock just informed me that it is midnight in Nordegg, so that means it is eleven o’clock here, late but not really. I heard and saw an ambulance race by heading south on the highway, perhaps the third, which tells me there is an accident somewhere.
I just ate two Clif bars, probably not a good thing to do so late but I was hungry and they were convenient. The Sunchild convenience store was robbed at gunpoint the other day, maybe now people will take my concerns about security more seriously.
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