Remember this past winter when I was bemoaning the fact that I had too much time on my hands? I’m pleased to report that the change in seasons has removed that challenge. That and the fact that I’m busy with the Cobalt Historical Society, big time.
Early in June, we held a Speakers’ Symposium, a first for our group. We had no idea how well-attended it would be, especially given that the day-long event was held on a Saturday. And, this was the first warm sunny Saturday in weeks.
Of course there were hiccups, but nothing that couldn’t be fixed or accommodated. Problems like a computer that seized-up while downloading a thumb drive driver. Fortunately, we had back-up.
We filled the room, paid the bills, and have a bit left over to add to our trail account. Judging by the feedback we received, and the lively chatter during the breaks, the attendees enjoyed themselves.
Reiner and I are also busy attending meetings to discuss funding and grants as well as learning about Agnico’s plans for rehabilitation to the trails on the company’s mine sites.
Speaking of trails – or should I say “trials,” Reiner has been busy with the less than pleasant task of picking up garbage. He’s making the best of the “trashy” situation by saving the beer cans for a refund, and donating the proceeds to the trail account.
This morning we received news of a more serious nature. The Right-of-Way Mine was hit by vandals. Again. They broke the lock from the door that Reiner repaired a month ago and smashed all of the windows within reach.
I don’t imagine that there’s much we can do to prevent vandalism. If only the kids had a sense of pride for the place, a sense of their heritage.
If I won the lottery, I’d spare no expense to restore and protect the heritage sites: make the place a world-class destination. It would be something else! It would create jobs and tourism and we could have a riverboat gambling cruise on the lake and the train would run from Toronto loaded with loaded tourists who would unload their cash and load up on beer from my micro brewery – Cobalt Blue, I’d call the brew. Unless Labatt have a problem with that. If they do, then I’d buy Labatt and problem solved!
But, since I don’t buy lottery tickets… the best I can hope for is that when I give a kids’ talk at the library later this summer, hopefully I’ll be able to encourage a sense of ownership and appreciation for the mine structures and heritage. Maybe the upcoming generation of taggers and trashers might think twice before… well, tagging and trashing.
On a more pleasant note, this Monday we stopped in to visit with one of the Society’s board members, Florence Dean. Remember Florence? She of the “Find Florence” photo from back in May? It turns out that wasn’t Florence, but her niece who also has a house on the sample parcel of land.
Florence lives in the original McKinley Darragh Mine guest house. Her father, John Charles (Charlie) Dean bought the house 1928. Florence grew up in Coleman Township and recalls playing in the yard and visiting her friends over on Nipissing Hill. As an adult, she studied fashion and moved to Toronto where she worked as a buyer for Eatons. She’d return north for holidays any time she could, and when she retired, she moved back to live in the family homestead.
Florence gave us a tour of the house and her paintings. Over coffee and muffins, she showed us old photos that she thought might be interesting. I asked if she had more. Oh yes she does! Might I scan them for digital safe keeping? Oh, yes I could! Something tells me I won’t be bemoaning the fact that I have too much time on my hands next winter!
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Inspired by Cee’s Share Your World – June 12, 2017
What do you do when you’re not working?
If you are retired, what do you that is not part of your regular daytime routine?
What would you do if you won the lottery?
What makes you laugh the most? What is your biggest pet peeve with modern technology?
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