Tuesday, August 02, 2011

Another weekend in Old Glengarry;

Another August long weekend at the homestead, the first of my sister’s roasts since mum died, which felt strange. My father nearly a year in the house by himself. Who would yell at us for no reason? And also, who would make the devilled eggs? Christine and I were left to do such, making two dozen, and with sea salt, which apparently made all the difference. I suggested to my sister that we take turns yelling at each other, but then completely forgot.

Christine and I never actually made it to the Glengarry Highland Games on Saturday, but dad pulled us out to the backyard on Friday night, where we got a full view of the fireworks, five miles distant. An impressive display I didn’t know they even did, only over the past decade or so. An impressive display just after 10pm, which was fortunate, with the storm not coming through for another hour or so. Fireworks bursting over the horizon of trees, between the lights poking up from the radio tower, from MacEwen’s. An hour later, both Christine and I on two sides of the house saw blue sparks burst through the house during the massive thunderstorm. We immediately turned off the lights (and dad’s computer) and watched the windstorm rage rain through the yard, with the worst of the storm sitting directly over the house for a good twenty minutes. Hard to believe the house wasn’t hit. But now the automatic light in the garage won’t turn off. Odd.

We saw some deer on the road, and, every so often, caught glancing whiffs of the skunks that live somewhere in my sister's garden.

Saturday morning, at least, Christine and I managed to get over to the Avonmore Berry Farm (she had a coupon), and we picked up a pie for the roast. We even brought my sister’s eldest, Emma, along for the ride, and she played in the haymow. Later on, we ended up in Cornwall at the Cornwall Square, and Emma showed us the baby ducks by the water (we had to keep watch, as to not step in Canada Goose leavings); Water Street, looking out into the St. Lawrence River, in the shadow of the International Bridge and the industrial site formerly known as Domtar. Monday, before we left, we were able to do another outing to Casselman, where Christine, Carmel and I took Kathy’s middle child, Rory, out for ice cream (I took the youngest on an outing in March, so it only seemed fair).

Kate couldn’t make it to the roast this year, as she was working her new retail job, but our friend Carmel Purkis came by, her first time out at the farm. It was apparently exactly the stress release that she needed, and a new person for my dad to tell stories to, for me to point out all of our history, surrounding. Up at my sister’s house, already her three kids have more than made their new pool worth the price, and on Sunday, Christine and Carmel helped too. Not as many came to the roast as previous years, and unfortunately, none of our extended family, and even less of Kathy’s in-laws than are usually around, either. Where were all of their friends, even? Was it simply good weather that everyone left town?

Is there ever anything as nice as a day spent lounging in the yard on the clearest-blue of days (we’ve been rained on, never out, so many times before), and an evening of stars? As they came out one by one, three-year-old Duncan pointed them out, counting them, but only to four. In the twilight, a couple of photos of Christine by the edge of their lawn, just where the barley field begins. Behind the barley, the bush where my grandfather once kept a sugar shack, boiling up maple syrup, long before I was born.

And from the farm, Christine and I are spending a week at her mother’s cottage in St. Adele, Quebec, hopefully spending our days getting as much writing done as possible, before she goes back to work on August 8. Might we finally get that long-awaited collaboration begun?

No comments: