Monday, September 19, 2022

road trip back

The photos tell a story

of the beautiful northern Ontario drive

we made last week
to north western Ontario

via the north shore of Lake Superior
with all the rock cuts.

I don't have many photos of the actual destination.  

I didn't think to take photos of the empty fields

behind Burris and Devlin and LaVallee.

We went over to Morson

from Rainy River, past Blackhawk.

Exotic names for the tiny places where people live.  

I didn't think to photograph them. 

Those towns that we drove through or stopped at for soup on the way there and 

also when we were up  there in my home corner of North Western Ontario. 

The Fort Frances area, I tell people.

Besides places named poetically; Terrace Bay, Ignace, Schreiber, Upsala, Emo,

Grassy Narrows, Sleeman, Finland, Nestor Falls, Barwick

there were so many fields and forests that have no name.

That we drove by.  And I did not photograph.

Also, I didn't take enough photos of my children.

They flew to Winnipeg and rented a car to join us.

I do have photos of my brother and I standing in front of 

the trees that my mother planted.

Now giants.

I didn't photograph Ned fixing the gravesite

so that it was perfect.

How can I tell a true story

when most of the photos I have are of long views across big water and cliffs that have 

no relation to the rural pocket of Canada along the rainy river where I grew up.

We drove three full days to get there.

We were there three days.

We drove three more days to get home again.

I worked on Indigo checkerboard during the long drives.  

I stitch in the ditches and also 1/4 inch inside

vast areas of white muslin.

When my father was 22 he was hired to be the secretary of the local school board.  Three applicants interviewed for the one room school in Miscampbell and Pauline Paget age 17 was hired.  In September 1945 they had their first date, a play held at the Burris school.  Theatre continued to be important for them throughout their long marriage.


Liz A said...

your words brought to mind this Indigo Girls lyric:

"don't take a picture ...
remember this in your heart"

Bethany G said...

So glad you had this beautiful drive and the time with your brother and the family - so important to have these days together. You will recall the travel days and the time with just the sights and memories - and pictures are with you and Ned in your minds and hearts. What we saw was beautiful...I love the story of your parent's meeting and the start of their lives together.

Judy Martin said...

The purpose of our visit was to inter the ashes of my parents, Paul and Pauline Johnson in the Devlin cemetery. Pauline died age 80 in 2007, Paul died 10 years later age 96 in 2017.

Mystic Quilter said...

Thank you for sharing these beautiful photos of trip and family even though the reason for going was one full of memories, both happy and sad I imagine. Pleased you arrived back home safely.

Anonymous said...

Love this nature …you can have only in Canada! So far only one holiday there, but love these pictures. Stiching in the car, not possible with our traffic and hektic on our streets here in Germany. Love your fantastic work! And that your father was born in Finnland! And so long time married! You could be proud. Thanks for sharing, Eva

Judy Martin said...

Thank you Eva. I write short biographies of each parent so that the children would know them a little better. What hit me later when I got home, was my own memories of my own youth. They kept coming back in dreams for a weeks

Threadpainter said...

Around Lake Superior is one of the trips I'd love to take.
I don't think I could handle that long drive (even with frequent stops) anymore, so I have thoroughly enjoyed the trip through your eyes !
I spend quite a few weeks a year going in the direction of North Bay these days with 2 daughters, hubbys and 5 grands to spend time with.
Wishing you well ... and your work is still stunning, your devotion to it so admiral.