Posted: October 6, 2009 | News Bites Home
This past weekend, Tim Oliphant, a cartoonist from Tennessee, came all the way to North Bay to plant a visit. I have known Tim for over 25 years and was determined to show him "Canada" in 3 days or less. We began with a drive to a nearby waterfall, a favourite family climb and leaf-viewing location. It was spectacular and Tim took many photos.
We continued on to Jocko Point and the pow wow grounds. There's a bay there which, to me is more spiritually cleansing than any building could ever be. Two people from the community were setting up a classroom near the ceremonial bower. Deer hides were stretched, cleaned and drying and a large teepee had been set up, where a meeting had just taken place. It was peaceful, welcoming and interesting. Tim took photos.
A chip stand at the entrance to the park sold Poutine, among other things like fresh pickerel and berry pies. Tim tried Poutine: a northern staple..(.it rather feels like your stomach has been put in a clamp when you're done) This consists of fries mixed with fresh yellow cheese curds and topped with hot gravy. If you mix this with pork and beans, you could survive for 48 hours or more..on the warmth of the methane alone. Tim photographed lunch. From there, we hit Tim Horton's in Sturgeon Falls- a place packed with locals, where you can hear the melodious mix of Franglais and Anglofrank from all directions. I ordered him a double-double and a Canadian maple donut. His life was transformed. Krispy Kreme is history.
On day 2, we took the train to Temagami to see the leaves. My daughter and her fiancé Lane came too. From the dome car, the scenery was breathtaking. The colors were spectacular. Tim took more pictures. In Temagami, we managed to get a ride in a float plane. The first for both Tim and Lane. Kate and I were reminded of the many years in which this was our main mode of transportation in and out of Lynn Lake Manitoba and it was sad to think that those days were over. I so love to fly!
We climbed the fire tower and Tim took more pictures. Even though the weather was wet and overcast, we enjoyed it all.
Day 3. Tim and I went to Matthew's Maple Syrup shack. Well, it's more like a thriving business. All the trees are tapped using miles of plastic tubing. The syrup is pumped into the "shack" where it's processed in a big shiny industrial system which removes 40% of the liquid from the sap. Tim bought maple sugar, syrup, and butter. He took more pictures and we picked up leaves that were pretty enough for pressing. After a movie and dinner with all the folks who work with me, he was sufficiently under Canadian influence to say "eh"! It's times like this- when friends come from away, that we really take time to explore and enjoy the things we usually take for granted. Kate took a photo of Tim and I just before we took off in the float plane. This is it. Happy fall from "the bush"! Lynn J.
[photograph in which LJ is NOT mugging for the camera!]