I wish it were that easy! Unfortunately the fiercely-determined Irene will say farewell in her own good time. We’ve been told to expect heavy rains and wind for the next 12 hours, and we’ve seen a fair bit of that already today. Is it just me or has this year been especially laden with what might seem the Plagues of Pharoah? Floods, earthquakes, tornadoes…enough already! Spare me the locusts and boils.
Everything is going along quite normally here. Chemo treatment #33 happened on Thursday past, and I’m doing fine. I just finished another novel by my new friend (whom I’ve yet to meet in person) Cathie Pelletier. But this novel, Candles on Bay Street, is written under her pseudonym, KC McKinnon. What’s it about? Well, uh, in large part it’s about a woman dying of cancer. Very touching actually. Though it might seem I’d be a tad sensitive, I actually don’t mind seeing or reading this kind of material. It’s all part of the stories that swirl around our lives, touching us all in some way at some time.
Next Saturday will mark Maggie’s official debut as a bus tour guide. She’s very nervous of course (who wouldn’t be…two hours of riding around Saint John trying to keep a gaggle of tourists focused on what you’re saying) but it’s high time: she’s studied hard and is becoming an expert on Saint John lore. I predict she’ll perform handsomely!
As for me, my next red letter day is September 7th when I depart for my Ontario trip. I’m looking forward to it a lot, a chance to visit with friends and family and partake of Canadian Country Music Week, always a slice of boozy, schmoozy madness.
What else? Nothing awfully new. Writing songs and watching the summer slip away. Last Sunday Maggie and I went on a lovely river cruise with several friends. Lovely…floating slowly down the river on a pontoon boat, sipping on wine and watching eagles and ospreys enjoy their habitat.
Mike Biggar and I went to the Shiretown Publicans bar last Friday. Mike did a half-hour opening set for Dave Gunning, a well known Maritime troubadour whom I was hearing for the first time. I became an immediate fan! There are some superb, truly world-class musicians and writers plying their splendid craft in these Atlantic Provinces, well beneath the radar, unfortunately, of the Beiberites and American Idol fans. Wonderful stories, lilting Celtic melodies, fiery musicianship. Check out Dave Gunning…and JP Cormier, Ryan Cook and the late Stan Rogers. This is music with echoes in our deep collective past, serious, heady, soulful stuff.
I’ve been going around for the past week humming “Broom of the Cowdenknowes” and the eerie “Pills of White Mercury.” I may never write another country song again. Just kidding…