An Historic Edge

The edge of the roof on St John’s Anglican Church, Lunenburg, Nova Scotia. 

Some of you may remember that this lovely lady suffered a devastating fire onHallowe’en  night, 2001. This site has been a place of worship ever since the Town of Lunenburg was settled in 1753.  It would have been an easy decision to tear down what remained, and build a spanking new church in its place. So, it is a great credit to the community (of the church, the town, the province and the country) that the decision was taken to do the right thing – not the easy thing. Instead, a massive and completely sympathetic restoration  was undertaken and completed in 2005.  

And here she stands. Lovely on a foggy September evening. 

Framed Invitation 

The world is full of people who have never, since childhood, met an open doorway with an open mind. – E. B. White
This doorway frames in invitation to enter into this peaceful garden room and recharge.  It belongs to the bright, new star of the vibrant Lunenburg  coffee shop scene: No 9, Montegue Street.

Join me?

Machine Shop Door

Later this month the Lunenburg Foundry (est 1891) plans to demolish the Old Machine Shop building  (which dates from 1907).

This is the building in which items cast at the foundry were machined and the patterns for casting were created in wood.   And here, too, the Atlantic brand make-and-break engine was designed and built.  These engines were sold world-wide.

This building has witnessed the rise and fall of the Grand Banks fishing schooner, the end of the age of sail as well as both world wars.  With it goes a a significant piece of Lunenburg’s, Nova Scotia’s and Canada’s built history. 



And here are just a few of the patterns that were offered up for sale last weekend in advance of the demolition. 


I think these were specifically parts for the Little Cod wood stove.  My grandfather had one of these sweet little stoves on his schooner.  Seems an unlikely combination: a wood burning stove aboard a wooden schooner. 

Linked to Norm’s Thursday Doors.

Spare

This scene is part of my morning commute. This beautiful Lunenburg Dory greets me in the morning and again in the afternoon. 

Now, I am not a morning person.  Slow to rise, and constantly underestimating the time it takes to get out the door generally makes for a rushed, and frazzled drive to work. I have always been that way. 

When I see scenes like this one, where the water is calmand the morning light is perfect, I regret not having the time for a photo. No time to stop. 

But on this particular morning (last Wednesday) I couldn’t resist.  I could not. I pulled over, hauled out my phone, quickly snapped the shot, then rushed off.  Not a second to spare to check the photo.

Later, however, when I caught my breath,  I was glad I stole the moment.  Maybe, tomorrow I’ll get up a bit earlier 😉 .

WPC – spare

All’s Quiet on Waterfront


With a half hour to spend between visiting the Farmer’s Market (every Thursday morning) and the opening of the wool shop (they’re having a sale!), I took myself for stroll along the waterfront yesterday. Why don’t you come with me?

It’s a “working waterfront” all year around, but a lot quieter this time of year than, say, the hight of tourist season.

The golf course, across the harbour, does double duty as the community’s sledding hill in winter.

Hey you, pigeon!

Playing with reflections.


The Dory Shop.  I could hear boat building going on inside.
 Ironworks Distillery, housed in a former blacksmith shop.  The store may be closed, but smoke from the chimney suggests the still is working and there’s something brewing.

It’s soon time to take down the Christmas decorations. This Christmas “tree” is made from old lobster traps, and was a popular family/group photo spot over the holidays.

Time to go. Just one last glance.  So peaceful and lovely.

 

Now

It is one of the great coincidences of nature that lobster season here happens at the same time as the holodays.  It follows that lobster is big part of many culinary traditions.  My grandparents often served lobster as the first course at Christmas Dinner.  I know folks for whom Christmas Eve (or New Years Eve) wouldn’t be the same without a feast of lobster, complete with pots of drawn(melted) butter, soft bread rolls and coleslaw (and perhaps some sparkling wine).  Mmmmmmm!

image

One of our boys has shellfish allergy, so don’t tend toward these traditions.  And in a way, that makes this gift all the more special!

At 4am this morning a very generous neighbour, who just happens to be a lobster fisherman, headed out to pull his traps.  It’s a cold, harsh, dangerous profession, for sure.  But around 4pm this afternoon, he surprised us with a gift of four “sea bugs” (1.5 &2 pounds each).

As you probably know, it’s essential to cook lobsters live, so we went to work immediately.  (Steaming is our preferred method.) You can’t really get much fresher (these guys were walking around the North Atlantic Ocean floor this morning), and you can’t get much more local. We are so grateful!

image

Now, if you’ll excuse me …… We have a feast to share.  (Son #1 is having leftover turkey 😉)

WPC – Now

Wet Paint

  

  The rain on the window this morning was a welcome sound, bringing with it permission to linger a little. That’s what happens after a very busy weekend.  Just as we have done for the past four years, an artsy friend and I participated in the our local community art gallery’s annual fundraising event, Paint Sea on Site.  That’s kind of an awkward title for a wet paint sale.

  
If you are not familiar with a wet paint sale, it works like this:  artists (from near & far) sign up and spread out around the town to create art.  The artwork is collected throughout the day, and often whilst still wet, the pieces are displayed at a central venue for the public to enjoy and bid on, silent auction style.  At the end of the day, the highest bidder walks away with a piece of original art.  Fifty percent of the proceeds go to the art gallery and the other fifty percent goes to the artist.

  
It’s a two day event and is so much fun!  My friend and I have a longstanding date to spend the weekend together.  We use the opportunity to catch up, while supporting each other as we rush to get some work done.  We talk, we paint, we eat, we entertain friends, acquaintances and tourists who stop by.  The time absolutely flies!

  
It is usually one of the hottest weekend of the summer, which can produce some challenges to keep the paint from drying too quickly. And so, we have learned to seek out a place with some shade.  (We also try to be near some public washrooms – but that’s just because we like our comforts)  Heat and drying paint was not a problem this year, not by a long shot. Saturday was cloudy and cool – a little too cool for me – and on Sunday it absolutely poured rain!  

  
The smart people moved inside to work, but not us! No! We stuck it out, finding shelter under a generous person’s deck. It worked pretty well for the morning, but by afternoon, everything was so wet including the canvasses, it make working very difficult, indeed.  The above daisies were in our host’s garden, the blue sky was in my dreams.

 
  
At the end of each day, we went back with our last pieces to watch the auction close, tally the results and compare notes of the day with all the other painters.  There were around 70 of us this year. The gallery provides us with a nice salad supper and some social time.  In spite of the weather, I’m happy to say that all seven of the pieces I produced this weekend sold. (I forgot to take pictures of the last two – no surprise, there). 

But perhaps more significantly, by bedtime last night, my body was tired, my eyes were blurry and my heart was full of the companionable friendships – some newly made and others warmly renewed. 

Permission to Come Aboard?

IMG_3889

This door leads to the cabins below the deck of the Bluenose II, a replica of the original fishing and racing schooner.  The original schooner Bluenose was purpose built in Lunenburg, Nova Scotia in 1921 in response to a losing an international race off Gloucester, Massachusetts.  And win she did!  The Bluenose held the title for 7 years.  She was also a working boat, fishing cod on the Grand Banks off of Newfoundland until fishing schooners became obsolete. Sadly, in spite of efforts to keep her in Lunenburg, the Bluenose was sold to the West Indies where she worked as a freighter until she struck a reef off Haiti in 1946.

The story continues in 1963, when Olands Brewery commissioned a replica be built by the same Lunenburg shipyard and using the same plans as the Bluenose.  The brewery used Bluenose II to represent their Schooner brand of beer until it was sold to the Province of Nova Scotia for $1.00 (or 10 Canadian dimes) in 1971.  This beautiful vessel then became our “sailing ambassador” and a great source of pride for the people of Nova Scotia and all of Canada.  In fact, her image in on the Canadian ten cent piece (the dime).

After almost 40 years and several refits, the Bluenose II was decommissioned and a “reconstruction” was ordered.  Happily, several weeks ago, the new Bluenose II received the green light to sail and she is ready to work. She was a beautiful sight earlier today, in the morning light, with her crew polishing and preparing to welcome visitors. It feels like a long lost relative has come home….. and after surviving an illness.  We are so happy to have her back.

The name Bluenose comes from a nickname given to the people of Nova Scotia.  We are called Bluenosers.  Is this because of our cold, damp winters? Or, as some say, from the dye rubbing off the fishermen’s mittens as they rubbed their noses in the cold and wet North Atlantic while fishing for cod?

Weekly Photo Challenge: Door.  Also, my entry for Norm’s Thursday Doors.