Monday, September 17, 2007

I’ve been asked to post more frequently and more regularly, lest my readers lose interest. My philosophy has been to post when I think I have something interesting to say, however rare and random that may be. Please let me know what you think.
Lorena and I are at the cottage, on the shore of Lake Talon; a lake in Northern Ontario. The water is a light tea colour, tinted by the water from the bogs in its catchment area. By mid-August it is already chilly for swimming, and so our daily bath is quick and bracing, but necessary, as there is no indoor plumbing this year.
I awoke last night, for the usual reasons, and peering out through the big front windows, I was struck by a rare and beautiful sight. In the bright moonlight a shroud of silver mist swirled slowly over the still, dark water in little peaks, like ghosts figure-skating in slow-motion over black ice. The nocturnal world seemed filled with magic, and I could only stand and stare in wonder. At such moments, you forget about the cold, and the flies, and all the inconveniences of living in such a place, and are only grateful for the brief moments of awe and wonder. Like the lonely call of a loon, drifting in through the fog, or when a bright green dragonfly with crimson eyes comes to rest on your shoulder as you paddle among the reeds and water-lilies, and you know no deerfly will dare approach to bite your neck. Or the sudden slap of a beaver’s tail, warning his neighbours of your approach as you round a bend in the river. Or the immense silence of a windless day, occasionally broken by the chattering of a red squirrel, or the distant drumming of a grouse. These are the moments that, put together, make life in the bush so rewarding in a way that is difficult to describe to one who has not experienced it for himself. And they are the moments that come back to you in sudden flashes, when you are thousands of miles away, and make you suddenly long for home, for the smell of pine and woodsmoke, for the soft rustle of leaves underfoot, for the immense silence of new-fallen snow.
Meanwhile, hurricane Henriette has hit San Carlos, and we have to wait to assess the damages. First reports are good; it was brief and not too intense. So we are expecting minimal damage. I’ll keep you posted.


  1. My dear friend Cap'n Jack Wilde.

    i never thought of you as a poet!
    a scientist and adventurer though not a poet! however your writings here stirred my love for the wilderness and brought back all the things that make Canada a pleasure to me.

    i have always felt fortunate to have you as a friend nd fellow adventurer and these writings simply enforce my
    endearment to you!

    Keep on living my friend and i will see you in Belize and may the Manadi Sail again and the two of us find ourselves in world of wonder n the journey to Nicaragua.


  2. Anonymous7:55 p.m.

    There you are Jack, I've found your blog. As I'm leafing through I find this post on your place in Northern Ontario. I love the way you write about it. Your words and thoughts truly capture my love of the north. You have completely captured my reasoning to spend my life here. Thank you.
    I so enjoyed my time with you and Lorena in Belize and consider myself blessed to have met the two of you. I look forward to seeing you this summer.