2 min read
19 Aug

It was fun to see some new (to me) countryside a week ago Saturday when Mimsie, Judith and I were invited to Betty and Peter’s cottage on a beautiful lake in Quebec, less than an hour’s drive from downtown Ottawa.  The weather was perfect to spend lakeside with good friends and great hosts.  Perfect! 

Dee needs a cocktail dress for a wedding she’s attending in 3 weeks, so I felt my foot was now well enough and needed to be put to the test, so I went shopping with her.  She found one at full price but I got 2 summer dresses at 60% off sales!  Of course, I now have to weed some old things out of my wardrobe because all my clothes, accessories and personal things have to fit in one large suitcase and one carry-on wherever I may go.   This forces me to keep my belongings only to things I will use and my wardrobe stays updated - cool. 

Living in the centre of a large city is a first for me and I’m pleasantly surprised that I haven’t missed having a car at all.  I’ve been reflecting how everything is so convenient when living downtown.   Last week I read an article referencing cities and the aging population of baby boomers.  It said that aging populations could flock to cities at higher rates. They went on to say, older people “…want to be where the services are easily accessible, where there are transit choices and ways to get around, and cultural activities and entertainment, all the things that people in their older years want to be able to enjoy.  Cities will probably become less business and more amenity oriented with an emphasis on culture and entertainment.”  This article echoed what I’ve been experiencing since my big move.  What a wonderful time to be older and alive! 

I was invited to spend a few days in Prince Edward County with friends I haven’t seen in 30 years.   To get there, I had to take the train, something else I haven’t done in many years.  I did have a few butterflies about what to expect, so I phoned Via Rail.  Just like the airport, they will ferry me by wheelchair and handle my luggage– great. 

Jeanette and Dale met me at the Belleville station.  Amazingly, Jeanette and I were dressed similarly – flared sleeves on colourful tops, black pants with slits up the sides topped by ties.  As we hugged and Dale took our pictures, the years seemed to slide away.  We headed to their lovely home situated on a beautiful gardened space backing onto a golf course.  Wine, dinner, hours of conversation, then bed. 

The next day, we visited many lovely places in the County.  We saw several wonderful art galleries; almost found ourselves guests at an outdoor wedding at a winery on the lake; had lunch at a pub at Lake on the Mountain (this unusual lake at the top of the mountain formed when the glaciers melted).  

Late in the afternoon, on the drive home, we had to drive into an almost black cloud cover that made us feel like it was midnight.  The rain poured down so hard Dale could barely see to drive, hailstones pelted the car, many drivers pulled to the side of the road, we passed some downed trees and branches.   From the backseat, I watched anxiously, fearing we were driving into the tornado the weather forecast had warned about.  Dale persevered, inching the car through the storm, finally breaking out into a clear sky.  When we arrived safely home, Dale admitted he had the same fear of a tornado but didn’t want to express his concern and scare Jeanette and me.  

(Please read the blog following this one to complete this story)

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