"Cowardice asks the question...is it safe? Expediency asks the question...is it politic? Vanity asks the question...is it popular? But conscience asks the question...is it right? And there comes a time when one must take a position that is neither safe, nor politic, nor popular but one must take it because it is right." ~Dr. Martin Luther King

Wednesday 14 August 2013

I Have To Tell You This

My mind and heart are still in Prince Edward County. I spent a couple of days on the beach at Sandbanks Provincial Park. Four generations of my family were gathered there. We discovered it when my youngest son was an infant in my arms. We were on a trip and camping overnight wherever we found ourselves. It was near dark when we checked in to a private campground. The site was deep among the trees. When we made our way to the beach in the morning, we came out of the gloom into brilliant sunshine, sand dunes,a beach that stretched for miles and the lake spread out before us sparkling and blue with a horizon that dropped off the face of the earth. We had to drag the kids away to continue our journey. It wasn't easier for me. Except for the smell of the sea, air that feels like gentle fingers touching one's face, the scene was straight out of my childhood, probably the happiest,most carefree of my entire life. Sandbanks became the annual trek for my family. This year, four generations formed a semi-circle on the beach. Four children built castles, made moats and splashed and floated in the water for hours. Two infants, one still unaware and the second, just two months older, drinking in everything he could see; the fourth generation to enjoy that glorious place. We hailed from different places;Aurora,Newmarket,Penetanguishne, Kitchener and Washington in the sky. The entire clan wasn't there. But enough. My daughter Heather and husband Andy Brookes ,son of my best friend, the late Margaret Brookes, last Postmistress of the Village of Kettleby, are the continuity. They graduated from a canvas tent, a fly sheet over the picnic table and one infant,Special Olympics Champion, to four children,now adults who still spend time there and have to tear themselves away. Now they have a tent trailer. The third and first new. The field kitchen is an organizational joy to behold. The camp fire always plentifully supplied. Smors, popcorn and marshmallows on a stick are de rigeur. They take bicycles and have a day of golf. They sleep up off the ground,play cards and scrabble and watch movies on an iPad on rainy days. I've sometimes wondered if gypsy isn't part of the family genes. Life outdoors seems so right. I had my scooter with me. They rode on bicycles ,I tootled along on my four small wheels. My grand-daughter Lindsay and Scott and their three girls had a site abutting amenities of flush toilets, hot showers and laundry facilities. A tent trailer can be rented and placed on a site as part of the camp service. Ontario was growing a provincial parks and campground program when we discovered Sandbanks. They stopped a long time ago. There were no food banks then. Social housing was a recognized need. I think full-facility campgrounds are the ultimate summer life style for Ontario families. I think food banks are an appalling reflection on societal values. I think $billions squandered in desperation politics is criminal.


Anonymous said...

Thank you, Evelyn. That does cut through the usual babble about us.

Anonymous said...

I recall being quite amazed by the awesome old trees in those towns. Hope they don't have bugs.

Anonymous said...

OK I am probably going to date myself. Can you still take a ferry to Picton & is there a fish hatchery just up the way to enthral kids while they wait for the boat ?