Local Heart, Global Soul

December 13, 2009

Why remembering people like Harold Geddes is important…

Filed under: CANADA,PHOTOGRAPHY — kiwidutch @ 1:00 am
Tags: , , , ,

(photo © kiwidutch)

Whilst we were visiting Sackville in New Brunswick, I took some  photo’s of  a plaque  on a building and a broom and a shovel…

Later on I  read though the information on the plaque and wanted to tell you about how the life of this man impressed me.

Harold Geddes was born in Halifax, probably in 1914. He passed away in Sackville, New Brunswick at 90 years of age.

Sackville is a not so small town but retains the feel and atmosphere of a small town.  Maybe that had a lot to do with Harold’s life. He was orphaned when he was only three during a famous explosion in Halifax in 1917 and adopted by Charles and Alice Geddes of Sackville where he spent his formative years.

Later he worked at the Fawcett Foundry,  and at an aircraft factory in Nova Scotia during World War Two. When the war ended he returned to Sackville, where he became a custodian at Mount Allison University,  until his retirement.So… nothing unusual then?  Well, not so far in Harold’s life.

But after he retired something special happened.

Apparently ” retirement” meant something different to Harold than it does for most other people…  because every day this brisk  and gruff gentleman took it upon himself to spend his time voluntarily cleaning the streets of downtown Sackville. He took pride in clearing the footpaths , all year long though the heat of summer and the cold of winter he shoveled the pavements free of  snow, picked up litter, broken glass, cleaned gutters of dirt and leaves and even washed windows.

Harold was someone  that we would label ” a character”  someone who doesn’t quite fit neatly into society, and he was apparently rather rough around the edges, and it’s said that he would often refuse to acknowledge “outsiders”. (heck, I thought that that is rather usual practice in many small towns all around the world )

Sackville  appreciated all his hard work, completely voluntary and in all weathers, so a memorial called ” “Remembering Harold” was created by local sculptor and Mount Allison sculpture technician Kip Jones.

In 1998, he was presented with the Good Neighbour Award and In 2000, Harold received the first-ever Mayor’s Award for his “pride, initiative, and interest in keeping Sackville neat and clean…on a totally volunteer basis.”

Clearly Harold was a quirky man, he had his ways and was what he was. Apparently, what you saw is what you got. He might have been a little rough around the edges, but he  sounds like one of those people who was a diamond in the rough.

It’s not often that a town has cause to honour a man for accomplishments  that feature, not on the big and showy world stage, but quite literally at ground level,  famous for doing the messy work, the hard graft, getting his hands dirty, mucking in.  Harold sounds like one of the world’s unsung hero’s… a volunteer, turning up day after day to get things done just because they need doing.

Bravo to Harold for being true to himself, for being his grouchy, brisk self and people just had to accept him for it. You know, if you are a square peg, Why not just accept that you are, and be happy in it, rather than trying desperately  to contort yourself into a round hole your whole life.

Bravo to all volunteers everywhere… who do the jobs that need doing, no pay and not nearly enough Thanks. Volunteers teach us that  money isn’t always everything, satisfaction of a job well done is important too, and that “giving back” can take many many forms.

I can only wish that there were plaques and statues for all those who volunteer…  so if you are a volunteer, then Kudos, this post is a  big Thank-You for the work you do.

December 10, 2009

Crossing the border in St. Stephen and back though Maine…

We have been visiting the Ganong Chocolate factory and museum in St. Stephen, New Brunswick, Canada. Now it’s time to cross back into the United States again, so we approach the border on the Canadian side…

(photo © kiwidutch)

..and then across the bridge and  approach the American Customs point…

(photo © kiwidutch)

(photo © kiwidutch)

(photo © kiwidutch)

We are now back in Maine and our short visit to Canada is over. Wow, what a beautiful country we have just seen a little snippet of.. we have already decided that we would very much like to return to Canada if we can mange it next trip in the future.

The afternoon is wearing on and we have some serious kilometers still to cover until we are back at “Camp” on the lake.

(photo © kiwidutch)

(photo © kiwidutch)

(photo © kiwidutch)

(photo © kiwidutch)

The way back is filled with small towns, a few zillion trees and happy chocolate filled children in the back of the van.

(photo © kiwidutch)

(photo © kiwidutch)

Eventually darkness falls and we are treated to a beautiful Maine sunset…

(photo © kiwidutch)

(photo © kiwidutch)

(photo © kiwidutch)

(photo © kiwidutch)

December 6, 2009

Sawmill Creek .. a Bridge under cover.

Filed under: CANADA,PHOTOGRAPHY — kiwidutch @ 1:00 am
Tags: , , ,

(photo © kiwidutch)

We are traveling down the coast  of the Bay of Fundy, and stop at Sawmill Creek Bridge.

It’s a beautiful covered bridge and we wanted to take a closer look…
In October 1869 the Saxby Gale was a powerful storm in which the combined force of wind and high tides destroyed homes and killed people and cattle all along the Bay of Fundy.

In that storm the bridge over Sawmill Creek Fell apart.

Rebuilt as a covered bridge, it was for years,part of the highway.

The current covered bridge was constructed in 1905. When a concrete bridge was planned to replace it in 1975, Albert County Heritage Trust, a newly formed organization persuaded the government not to demolish the covered bridge.

It was the Trust’s first of many projects to save historic structures.

(photo © kiwidutch)

(photo © kiwidutch)

(photo © kiwidutch)

(photo © kiwidutch)

(photo © kiwidutch)

(photo © kiwidutch)

… and No, I have no clue why there’s a fine if you don’t walk your horse!

(photo © kiwidutch)

December 5, 2009

Restaurant Review: Broadleaf Guest Ranch and Restaurant

(photo © kiwidutch)

We have spent the morning walking around Hopewell Rocks, and enjoying a glorious day outside. Now it’s lunchtime and we are heading south via the Fundy Coastal Drive.

After a while it’s inevitable that the fresh air and exercise has an effect,  and conversation in the van turns to lunch. We keep a look-out for a diner or family establishment that have been our favourites so far.

This is how we came to stop at The Broadleaf Guest Ranch and Restaurant.

One thing is clear when we arrive: this Farm /Ranch has been very busy to make the most of what it has..  space and beautiful location, it has diversified to be a number of different things in the one place and also appears to serve the local community well, since the far end of the restaurant appeared to be getting ready to cater for a wedding when we  were there.

There is  guest accommodation available and  restaurant, but inside the restaurant there is also a gift/souvineer area, outside there are canoes, a covered wagon, picnic area and  horse riding, so it’s clear that there is a lot going on here at the Ranch.

(photo © kiwidutch)

(photo © kiwidutch)

(photo © kiwidutch)

(photo © kiwidutch)

(photo © kiwidutch)

It looks like a great place for an outdoor holiday.

Inside the Restaurant there are big couches by a fireplace that would be especially welcoming in the winter months, a play area with rocking horses and stuffed toys, so the kids can be kept amused until the food arrives.

(photo © kiwidutch)

Once again we are treated to some good home style cooking, and while  it is not haute cuisine, it is honest food at a reasonable price. Good Family fare, crowd pleasing food. The kids tuck in and enjoy their meals.

(photo © kiwidutch)

(photo © kiwidutch)

(photo © kiwidutch)

(photo © kiwidutch)

(photo © kiwidutch)

(photo © kiwidutch)

(photo © kiwidutch)

(photo © kiwidutch)

(photo © kiwidutch)

(photo © kiwidutch)

(photo © kiwidutch)

Although this is not the kind of food we would like to have every day, we enjoy ours too.

The sun is shining and while the kids are letting off a little steam running around outside, I take a little walk around to take some photos.

(photo © kiwidutch)

(photo © kiwidutch)

(photo © kiwidutch)

(photo © kiwidutch)

(photo © kiwidutch)

(photo © kiwidutch)

(photo © kiwidutch)

December 4, 2009

Hopewell Rocks, having fun with the camera!

(photo © kiwidutch)

We have stopped at the Hopewell Rocks in New Brunswick on our way back to Maine.

The kids are having a wonderful time on the beach, looking at the rock formations, weird pebbles, small rocks piled up artfully,  crabs and a multitude of thing in and around the waters edge.

We all take a heap of photos, and generally get inspired by our surroundings.

The weather is lovely and we are all loving the walking.   Eventually my asthma gets the better of me and  I get a bit wheezy  after walking a bit further than I intended  and Mr. Four’s little legs are starting to suffer from weariness so it’s nice to see that there is a trolley at  the end of the loop walk where the two of us can catch a lift back.

We leave the fitter members of our party to do the full loop, Mr Four and I take the motorized way back to the information centre, where we amuse ourselves in the outdoor playground until the others catch up.

(photo © kiwidutch)

(photo © kiwidutch)

(photo © kiwidutch)

(photo © kiwidutch)

(photo © kiwidutch)

(photo © kiwidutch)

(photo © kiwidutch)

(photo © kiwidutch)

(photo © elmotoo)

(photo © kiwidutch)

(photo © kiwidutch)

(photo © kiwidutch)

(photo © kiwidutch)

(photo © kiwidutch)

(photo © kiwidutch)

(photo © kiwidutch)

(photo © kiwidutch)

(photo © kiwidutch)

(photo © kiwidutch)

This is an excellent place to have visited… everyone is very pleased that we stopped here.

December 3, 2009

Hopewell Rocks and some very large “Flower Pots” indeed!

(photo © kiwidutch)

Today we start heading  back to Maine. We want  visit the Hopewell Rocks the way as we have heard that the walks  are lovely and rock formations are well worth seeing.  Some of the rocks are called ” flower pots”,… Flower pots? Humm, sounds interesting … we pack everything into the van and set out…

The flowerpot  rocks we want to see are situated near the very top of the Bay of Fundy, where  the tides there are amongst the biggest in the world.

Imagine 100 billion tons of water moving in and out of a bay twice every 25 hours. Powered by the gravitational pull of the moon and the sun.  The gravitational pull of the sun during the new and full moon phases is stronger then usual and and results in higher than normal or ‘Spring: tides.

When the moon is at right angles to the line between the earth and the sun, the gravitational pull is weaker, resulting in lower then normal or “neap” tides.

(photo © kiwidutch)

(photo © kiwidutch)

(photo © kiwidutch)

(photo © kiwidutch)

Why does the tide come in so high? Because the Bay of Fundy is funnel-shaped, wide and deep at one end and shallow at te other, tides are pushed increasingly higher as they move up the bay. By the time they reach “ the rocks” the tides are over four stories high.

(photo © kiwidutch)

(photo © kiwidutch)

(photo © kiwidutch)

Although the flowerpot rocks come in a variety of different shapes and sizes, they have all been formed over millions of years by the dynamic movements of the earth and erosion from glaciers, tides, snow, ice and winds.

(photo © kiwidutch)

(photo © kiwidutch)

The story of the rocks began approximately 300 million years ago when fast-flowing streams deposited thick layers of and and gravel at Hopewell Cape from the nearby Caledonia Mountains.

(photo © kiwidutch)

Over time the sand and gravel compacted into layers of conglomerate rock and sandstone. Forces within the earth thrust and titled the rock layers, creating large, vertical and horizontal fractures. From this point of the flowerpots began to evolve into their unique shapes.

(photo © kiwidutch)

How long will they stand? As the upper surfaces of the flowerpots become weakened in the spring due to moisture, pieces slide down the cliffs. Larger flowerpot rocks may stand for thousands of years, other hundreds, depending on how much they become unbalanced though erosion.

Geologists say there is enough conglomerate rock to make these amazing pillars for the next 100,000 years!

(photo © kiwidutch)

(photo © kiwidutch)

(photo © kiwidutch)

The midges attack us in the forest, but the beach walk is lovely and we have fun looking at odd looking rocks, piles of pebbles and puddles in the rocky  muddy flats… we like Hopewell Rocks!

(photo © elmotoo)

(photo © kiwidutch)

November 30, 2009

Fort Beauséjour, an amazing, beautiful structure…

(photo © kiwidutch)

We are in New Brunswick, almost on the border with Nova Scotia, visiting Fort Beauséjour. Its an amazing structure and standing on it, going around it and running down it’s steep slopes has been delighting the four kids and three adults in our party all afternoon. It’s a wonder of engineering, so lets look at how it was made and what happened here…

Fort Beauséjour was built in  1751 in several stages. The first Fort was a simple five sided palisade of wood with bastions at each corner. At it’s widest point the fort measured about 79m (260 feet). The insides of the bastion walls were packed with earth to support gun platforms.

In 1752 the fort was strengthened against rumored British attack and transformed into a more substantial earthwork structure. The Acadian inhabitants in Chignecto had built dykes and reclaimed marshlands for eighty years before the fort was built. They were a tightly knit community, largely self sufficient in food production, but did enjoy a certain amount of commerce with the Fortess of Louisbourg.

(photo © kiwidutch)

(photo © kiwidutch)

(photo © kiwidutch)

(photo © kiwidutch)

In 1754 the British laid plans to drive the French from North America. From 1751 to 1754 the French and British eyed each other warily from their respective sides of the Missaquash River. Minor skirmishes between British troops and Indian allies of the French occurred, but the forts also cooperated in the exchange of deserters and some trade even grew up between the rival forts. Some of the officers became friendly enough to exchange personal letters.

Everything changed in 1755.

(photo © kiwidutch)

(photo © kiwidutch)

(photo © kiwidutch)

(photo © kiwidutch)

From the beginning the Acadians actively resisted attempts to deport them. Some Acadians left the area to take refuge along the Miramichi River, in Canada or on Isle St. Jean (Prince Edward Island). Others stayed on to defend their lands. British foraging and raiding parties were attacked by Acadians and Indians directed by Charles Deschamps de Boishébert. In September 1755, the British reported that 300 of Boishebert’s men drove off a party of troops attempting to burn a church at Petitcodiac.

The British continued to capture and deport small groups of the remaining inhabitants.

(photo © kiwidutch)

(photo © kiwidutch)

(photo © kiwidutch)

(photo © kiwidutch)

(photo © kiwidutch)

On August 11, 1755, over 400 Acadian men from the area were called to Fort Cumberland. The orders against them were read and they were imprisoned in the fort. For the next two months Fort Cumberland and Fort Lawrence served as prisons while farms were burned, cattle driven off and inhabitants brought to the forts until transports could take them out of the country. Out of a population of about 3,000, over 2,000 were eventually deported.

(photo © kiwidutch)

(photo © kiwidutch)

(photo © kiwidutch)

(photo © kiwidutch)

(photo © kiwidutch)

(photo © elmotoo)

(photo © kiwidutch)

Major land clashes climaxed in 1759 with the massacre of eleven members of a British wood cutting party near Point de Bute, at a place known since as Bloody Ridge. The Fall of Quebec in 1759 ended organized resistance but sporadic deportations continued until 1764 when the Lords of Trade and Plantations gave Acadians the right to resettle in Nova Scotia.

(photo © kiwidutch)

(photo © kiwidutch)

(photo © kiwidutch)

(photo © kiwidutch)

(photo © kiwidutch)

(photo © kiwidutch)

What I have seen here strikes me as a sad indictment on the human race,  that in a land as vast as North America that any sharing of the space didn’t seem to be acceptable to the British… was this just an early example of ” ethnic cleansing”?  Why was it really necessary to drive people who were settled, productive, self sufficient and close knit out of the area they had occupied for so long? “Politics” clearly has a lot to answer for.

It must have been heartbreaking for the Acadians to start again, but, start again is what they did. They migrated all along the eastern seaboard of the Canadian Maritimes and the United States, some even found their way to the American South, where, they became known as “Cajuns”   and founded communities in Louisiana that are famous even today.

November 29, 2009

From Fort Beauséjour to Fort Cumberland …without going anywhere?

(photo © kiwidutch)

We are in New Brunswick, Canada and have just left  Sackville, heading for the Province of Nova Scotia a short distance away. Close to the border we spy a sign… Fort Beauséjour, and decide to take a closer look.

First we come to a beautiful stone building… and start to learn a little about the history of the area.  I have a fascination for this because when I was at  school I studied Graphic Art, and Art History because  of my interest in all things “Arty”.

At the time I didn’t see the point in studying History as well, a decision I now regret, because over the years I have discovered that I am in fact a secret history buff.Ok, not in the technical dates and figures department of History, but in social history, the way people lived in the past, the practical implements of life that they would have had to hand, the technology of the time.

I adore looking at hand crafted wooden implements, I drool ( no… not literally)  at the gorgeous detail in historical textiles, and look covetously at old cast iron cookware.

(photo © kiwidutch)

(photo © kiwidutch)

(photo © kiwidutch)

The historian in me loves places like this, so I’m keen to know more…

Arcadians came to this region, which they called Beaubassin, in the 1670’s.

They flourished for eight decades: raising families, dyking marshes, harvesting and selling crops and raising livestock. In 1750-51, the French introduced a military presence, first with soldiers , then with forts at Beauséjour and Gaspareaux. An expedition of British and New England soldiers captured both French forts in June 1755.

(photo © kiwidutch)

(photo © kiwidutch)

(photo © kiwidutch)

Two months later, the victors began to round up the Arcadian population for a massive deportation. Fort Cumberland (the renamed Fort Beauséjour ) was the headquarters and prison for those operations. This exhibit of artifacts and images tells the story of the Arcadian and French presence in this historic part of Canada.

(photo © kiwidutch)

(photo © kiwidutch)

Dr. John Clarence Webster (1863-1950) a medical practitioner and noted historian, was the moving force behind the creation of Fort Beauséjour National Historic Park. For over thirty years, he did much to raise the profile of local history in the province of New Brunswick. The artifacts are a variety of items collected by Dr. Webster and interested citizens.

(photo © kiwidutch)

Iron used for pressing lace.

(photo © kiwidutch)

(photo © kiwidutch)

Tobacco chopper.

(photo © kiwidutch)

This crib was made by Charles Dixon in 1840 as a gift for Queen Victoria’s son Edward, who became King Edward VII. Although the ship carrying the crib went down in a shipwreck, the crib was recovered and returned to the Dixon family. Constructed from maple with veneers and inlays of maple, mahogany, fruitwood and rosewood.

(photo © kiwidutch)

William Chapman’s note book. First used in Yorkshire in 1764 and still being used in 1777 to record payments for construction work at Fort Cumberland.

(photo © kiwidutch)

Wooden Plaque of the Coat of Ams for the city of Moncton 1942, that was hand carved by Mr. Albert Nadeau of St. Francois, New Brunswick.

(photo © kiwidutch)

(photo © kiwidutch)

Bronze bell from Arcadian Church on Beauséjour Ridge. The bell was cast in  France in 1734  at the Navel Federation in Rochefort France.

(photo © kiwidutch)

(photo © kiwidutch)

(photo © kiwidutch)

(photo © kiwidutch)

November 26, 2009

Sackville and a Cookie discovery… or should that be “Kookie”?

(photo © kiwidutch)

We are in Sackville,  New Brunswick and a small wrong turn whilst getting out of town leads us to a delightful discovery.

We chance upon a bright red building with a large sign that says ” Kookie Kutter Bakery”.

Now, not too exciting you might think… but  this place is well known locally because this company is rather well known for producing cookies that are distributed around Prince Edward Island, Cape Breton, and the rest of New Brunswick, Nova Scotia and Ontario regions, and they are most known for their wonderful Ginger Snap Kookies (cookies/biscuits).

Much to the amazement to those in the back who don’t know this fact, the two foodies in the front of the van organize a quick detour into the car park area and are inside before the rest of the party can ask questions.

The delight in their eyes at what we return with is a treat indeed.

So, What did we see inside?

(photo © kiwidutch)

(photo © kiwidutch)

(photo © kiwidutch)

(photo © kiwidutch)

(photo © kiwidutch)

(photo © kiwidutch)

(photo © kiwidutch)

The staff are friendly and don’t mind me taking a few photos…inside the bakery  it smells wonderful… the cookies are very good too.  If you have to go for a treat for the day, going for a good local one like this is highly recommended.

Our van-load of seven definitely recommend these.

Kookie  Kutter Ltd     .  18 Lorne Street     .    Sackville     .    N.B. E4L 3Z7     .    Ph: 506 536-2982

November 25, 2009

Restaurant Review: “Mel’s Tea Room”, Sackville, New Brunswick, Canada

(photo © elmotoo)

It shouldn’t surprise anyone who has traveled in a party of  seven persons that at any given moment you will probably have someone who comes out with the potential  activity stopping words” I’m hun-gry!”

Hopefully this phrase is not  voiced 25 minutes after you have paid for a breakfast that they said they were ” too full” to finish and hopefully it’s  also not one hour after a massive breakfast that you were rather amazed that  they did finish !

Either way it’s sure as eggs that once the “I’m hungry” cat has been let out of the bag that the thoughts of others  in the group will immediately turn to their stomaches and heaven help us if some days the morning started out looking like we would be hopping from one eating establishment to another ( especially if  kids had their way).

I am a firm believer  that the state of  ” starvation”  is only  bought on after  going without food for days on end and not by the first tummy rumble bought on by the sighting of an ice-cream sign in a shop window, and that treats are treats and not items  expected to be supplied by parents on demand ( in said child’s mind: seemingly every  hour or so)

Therefore, harsh Mama that I am, our kids  have to learn to live with their tummy rumbles and master the art of :

A) Patience  and self discipline.

B) The lesson that instant gratification is not  the way Life was meant to be.

C)  The realisation  that  in normal, fit, healthy and able children ( such as themselves)  these small pangs can be ignored with great safety for rather some hours without threat of death or  any kind calamity,

D)  That the addition of fresh air and exercise will make the later enjoyment of a larger meal much more enjoyable.

So no surprise then, that pitiful plea’s for ice-cream for the ” I’m hungry bunch ”  immediately after breakfast were steadfastly ignored .

(photo © kiwidutch)

Herding the kids out into the fresh air for a decent walk around the Waterfowl Park has been a great experience, well enjoyed and now, with the distraction of an activity over, someone’s little voice in the back started pushed everyone’s “I’m hungry” buttons almost as soon as we were all loaded back into the van.

At least they have had the fresh air and exercise to have earned  lunch…  so we head into the heart of Sackville to look for an eatery that looks like it will survive a charge of ravenous children.

(photo © kiwidutch)

This is how we ended up in a fabulous diner called  “Mel’s “,  in Sackville, New Brunswick, Canada.

This place is part shop at the front, and Diner at the rear. there are booths for the diners. Adults and smallest kid settle into one booth while the bigger girls gaggle together in the booth directly opposite .

(photo © kiwidutch)

(photo © kiwidutch)

(photo © kiwidutch)

The Kiwidutch adults are now getting better at knowing what to expect in this kind of eatery, so we order something simple that we know will go down without fuss for the kids…

(photo © kiwidutch)

(photo © kiwidutch)

(photo © kiwidutch)

(photo © elmotoo)

(photo © kiwidutch)

(photo © kiwidutch)

(photo © kiwidutch)

(photo © kiwidutch)

(photo © kiwidutch)

Again we have found a family run eatery  that serves simple food cooked very well… The food is a hit, the staff are friendly and the atmosphere is easygoing and relaxed.

Mel’s Tea Rooms, Bridge Street, Sackville, NB, Canada.

Even Mr. Four manages his toasted sandwich with gusto and the girls do well with their lunches too.  All in all, we have a reasonable  lunch for a reasonable price. So if you are looking for a successful family lunch without hassle  then I would recommend Mel’s Tea Rooms.

The only point to Note: We discover that we can’t use our credit cards here, however there is a money machine on the premises and so I use  my “pin”  card to withdraw some cash  to pay our meal  instead.

Let’s take a look at the surrounding buildings … we love the fact that this is quite a large town that  retains a small town friendly  feel…

(photo © kiwidutch)

(photo © kiwidutch)

(photo © kiwidutch)

(photo © kiwidutch)

(photo © kiwidutch)

(photo © kiwidutch)

(photo © kiwidutch)

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