Volume 22, Fall, 2011

The Coconut Telegraph



Where does the time go?




Summer has raced past.  My first contact with Canadian weather was a cold and rainy spring.  That soon changed into one of the finest summers for weather I can recall in recent times.  Unfortunately, speeding time eclipses reality: July was a blur, August was fleeting, September came and went in a flash and now October is upon us.  Like all migratory species, I start to think of flights and warm thoughts.  And it will be only a matter of hours until I board a flight to SE Asia.

Summer highlights included the Ottawa BluesFest, with an impressive set of performers and performances.  Stephen Marley played an awesome set, mixing his music and father Bob's seamlessly.  Bootsy Collins rocked and Ben Harper rolled as we 'burned one down'.  The surprise show was John Fogerty.  He played Creedence Clearwater Revival songs with an energy and spirit befitting a 21 year-old, while his guitar showed the experience of a seasoned artist.  Wow!  There were many others, too many to list.  And let us not forget the stage blowing down on Cheap Trick (perhaps a message from above).  As always, good times with great friends.

This summer marked the entry of two friends into the Harley family.  Both arrived via different highways:  Bubba renewed his passion for riding after a long hiatus and Mike just decided to go buy a Fatboy.  Perhaps the three of us will squeeze in a trip next summer.

Although I did have a few jobs secured for the summer, I learned early on where I was to spend the bulk of my time.  I went to Mike's house to replace "a couple of rotten boards" and discovered that the chimney was rotten all the way to the roof, a mere 30 feet above.  A couple of rotten boards turned into a career for me, much to the chagrin of Mike's bank account.  In addition, I had the pleasure of doing some building out of town for other friends.  These "away games" are always wonderful as it allows me the opportunity to spend some quality time them and their families.  How fast those wee ones grow into young adults.

I managed to put my kayak in the water a mere four times so far this summer.  Sad, I know, but sometimes life gets in the way of living.   The paddling highlight was a few days in the Kawartha region with Cam Taylor, complete with a wee dose of poison ivy.

As happens every summer, I had the pleasure of visiting several cottages in within a couple hundred kilometers of Ottawa.  Kenny Island, Fifth Depot Lake, Ella's Place and Jayman's as well.  These are quintessential cottages, situated on small lakes in the Canadian wilderness.  Although they differ in several ways, they are also very much the same in what they represent.




From the Saddle



Paddling the Trent




Cottage Report