My stepfather was the town garbage man, which meant an unpleasant stigma, and unkind teasing from the kids at school. But it also meant dented cans of soup or fruit, bags of perfectly wearable clothing, and even boxes of books, that Clifford would bring home from the garbage… Beautiful Joe, Uncle Titus in the Country, and a host of others that I treasured as I was growing up. They aren’t garbage men any more. Last I heard they were sanitary engineers and had to have a Grade 12 education before they were hired. And they aren’t allowed to bring anything home from the garbage.
Note: This was written in January ’05, when all the kids were still living at home. Irene was 22, James 20, Raewyn 18, Vicki 16, Andrew 13, Timothy 11 and Nathaniel 5. The house seems empty now with “only” three kids at home! ~ Willena
Pyromaniacs and Wannabe’s
Keep in mind as you read this, that it happened on the coldest night of the winter so far…
Katie Higgins sat on her bed, chin resting in her hands. Her eighteen-month-old brother, David, played quietly at her feet, with three tiny plastic kittens.
What a waste of a perfectly fantastic day, she fumed inwardly, to have to spend it cleaning my room. She looked glumly at the jumble of clothing, shoes, books, and stuffed animals that was her side of the room. She had been here an hour and made very little progress.
It was a beautiful October day in Rabbit Hollow. The afternoon sun shone brightly in a cloudless blue sky. The trees were brilliant red, gold, and orange.
Harvesting was done. The storerooms overflowed with carrots, turnips and cabbages. The village was alive with excitement and delicious smells as all the rabbit families prepared for the big day tomorrow — Fall Harvest Festival.
No one was more excited than Robbie Rabbit. Tomorrow all his aunts, uncles and cousins were coming to his house for the Festival!
A few minor details have been changed, but this really happened in the summer of ’79 at Rockwood Conservation Area, near Rockwood Ontario….
I never had company as I walked to kindergarten. At five years old, I took the mile-long walk alone. I didn’t mind. I liked being alone. There was so much to do along the way. Kick a pebble ahead of me… admire the flowerbeds in the yards along the way… throwing pebbles in the creek… balancing on the curb pretending I was a tightrope walker…
~ written some years ago… both dogs are gone now, and we have a blue heeler named Shadow
Now that we have two dogs, we have an underdog. We don’t have a top dog… Teena is too dumb for that. Or maybe it is more accurate to say Teena just takes life as it comes, and is totally oblivious to any concept of a hierarchy. But Snook, even in the absence of a top dog, is definitely an underdog. We had seen many instances of his abject submission already. For instance, he will start chewing on some object, and all I have to say is, “Snook!” — quietly, and not forcefully at all — and he spits it out of his mouth and lies there as if nothing happened. If I go to pet him, he promptly rolls over on his side for me to scratch his tummy. But the funniest thing I have ever seen — the clincher, if there had been any doubt as to his position in the hierarchy — was a week ago Saturday night.
Today is the 12th of the 12th of the 12th. Some say it’s a Golden Day because it will come only once in your lifetime. But today is momentous for my family for a different reason. Something happened three years ago today, on December 12, 2009, which would change our lives forever. This is something I wrote two years ago yesterday, which tells the story…
One year ago last night, our family got together to celebrate the marriage of our eldest daughter, Irene, to her best friend, Sean. Sean is from Southern California, and had not been able to return to Alberta with Irene on Dec.2. He surprised her by telling her he would arrive on Saturday, December 12.
This handy little widget… …is proving very helpful in keeping me on track this year in NaNoWriMo. It’s so easy to forget to write for several days, and then make up for it all at once in one day. Each colour on this calendar shows how much I’ve done that day.
Recently I’ve realized just how much writing has taken a back seat to other things in my life, and it has had a detrimental effect. It reminds me of a book I read long ago… Papa’s Daughter, by Thyra Ferre Bjorn. “Button”, as she was called by those nearest to her, had a passion for writing. That burning desire was all but smothered for a number of years, but it smoldered in her spirit and almost consumed her in its demand for fulfillment.