When I turned 60, that number looked big; but when I listen to my thoughts or look into my heart or look around me I feel much, much younger. But even if I were turning 100 it would still feel insignificant after our journey in 2011 to a magical place in Nova Scotia that is 350 million years old. Continue reading
I’m excited to be heading back to this painter’s paradise tomorrow. It is an artist retreat on an island in Canada’s Bay of Fundy. You know. The place with the highest tides in the world.
The following post is from 2012 on my first trip to the island with a group of artists.
When we arrived at Long Island in the Bay of Fundy for our Artist Retreat, it was an overcast and showery afternoon. The mist and fog shrouded this huge rock of an island that we could see from our cabin. It looked ancient and mysterious as it disappeared and reappeared in the mist and I was anxious to see it at sea level when the low tide allowed it.
Most long weekends in August we camp on Brier Island with Bear River friends.
It’s very low key…shared food, mostly vegetarian, cooked over the campfire or propane stove, sleeping in tents, nature walks, and lots of talks and laughter and bird watching and telling stories and sharing ideas and catching up.
One of my favorite delights is to fall asleep listening to the ocean waves. Or is it waking up to the haunting calls of seals?
Come with me down the green path…..
Along the bumpy ridge…..
Past the rising tide…….Past the ocean waves……
Follow your nose……
Past the wild and fragrant Roses…..
We might be under shelter…
…or checking out the new, lone teepee…
..or riding bikes….
…or watching the sun set…
…or at the campfire…
…or walking through fields of wildflowers
…or imagining a new painting….
…or waiting for a ferry to go home.
We had all the ingredients for a Merry Christmas this year. Food, Swiss chocolate, art, a fragrant tree, friends, our daughter Emily, and beautiful snow. Only our son Jesse was missing from the mix, which was too bad, but we did spend lots of time on the phone catching up with his city life.
It’s wonderful to have our daughter home….this time from London. She’s been helping us get back into finishing up house tasks like painting the last few walls, hanging towel racks and putting up coat hooks; little details that we stopped working on 2 years ago. She’s very determined to have us organized before she departs on her next adventure. It’s amazing how you stop seeing the unfinished trim around the windowsill or the temporary curtain on the bathroom window after the main renovations are over.
I doubt we would have even bothered with the tree and decorations if neither of the ‘kids’ had come home, but I really liked the effect and I’m so glad we were encouraged to do so. Thanks Emily!
The fresh tree came from a neighbour who delivered in on the day he cut it. All for $15 and the fabulous fragrance was free.
The land was green up until early Christmas Eve when snow started falling and falling and falling. It was so very pretty that I took a break from cooking and walked around the block to admire Nature’s beauty.
There was very little traffic and in the ditches I could hear water trickling in its eternal journey down, down, down the hills to the river.
The snow was fluffy and light.
I wonder what story this building is telling. Who lived here? Where did the back porch go to?
I stopped in to visit a neighbour and when I emerged to continue my walk home, it was dark. The only sound to break the silence was the wind in the tall bare branches – a sound I’ve always found very soothing. I stopped and stared up and thought about how nice it would be to see my departed parents and grandparents again. I thought about Robert Frost’s poem.
Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening
Meanwhile over the last week, soup and other food was made and shared at a few gatherings and of course, way too many sweets were eaten.
So just to ground us again and ease us back into thinking about creativity, we went with friends to visit Wayne Boucher, Nova Scotia’s celebrated painter. He treated us to a tour of his new paintings in his retrofitted studio that overlooks the Bay of Fundy.
By December 28th, the Christmas snows were gone and the weather was balmy.
Standing on the Wharf looking out across the Bay of Fundy was, as always, a visual treat. What inspiring shapes and blues in that water and sky. Wow! What a gift for us all.
Wayne Boucher’s palette:
We were both thrilled with the trip. We could barely contain our excitement to finally be arriving at our new adventure.
Our car was stashed in the lower level of the ferry, stuffed with enough provisions and clothes until our moving truck arrives. And our bewildered cat Fluffy was in the car too.
The ferry ride from New Brunswick to Digby, Nova Scotia: