Once again this summer our family made a visit to our retreat in the Codroy Valley. Since our house often sits empty, I think the walls of the place actually roar and push back what with the exuberant energy of grandkids who take up residence for a few weeks. These kids put the systems of the place to the test. I am not a doting grandparent, so I often cringe with the actions of these impetuous but lovable young creatures. Be assured I like my quiet time too, especially when the ferry leaves the ferry dock and all are safely on board.
Our visit this summer had its moments due to the poor health of my wife, Dianne. We were well served by the Dr. Charles L. LeGrow Hospital and the successful execution of a procedure that had to be carried out in Western Memorial Hospital Corner Brook. Many thanks to those hospital personnel that attended the situation. A particular shout out goes to Dr. Elhamy Samak at Port aux Basques for his special attention and reliability when follow up with him was required. After five weeks we returned to Ottawa.
During my visit I got to meet René and Rosalyn Roy at their place and where the Weekly and now the Appalachian are published and put to print. I visited when René was literally getting the paper out the door, so the high energy of a busy newspaper was hard to escape. I felt helpless that I could not jump in, but after some brief conversation I knew I could best help by getting out of the way. My hat goes off to these people for their bravery and tenacity in producing now two weekly papers.
It came as no surprise that the tourism industry on the Southwest coast continued to take a hit this year. Those with whom I spoke noted the continued challenges in business due to the pandemic. There were spots of activity in places but overall my sense was the season left much to be desired.
While I am on the topic of tourism I feel compelled to comment on the railway museum in Port aux Basques. I took my young grandson to see it. He is a bit of a railway buff. Sadly, this museum has seen better days. Much of it is now off limits to visitors for safety reasons. It is in need of serious remediation if indeed it can be restored at all. Its tourist value is absolutely missing now. It is best that it remains closed unless it gets major investment and restoration.
Finally, I should note that I began this piece before the death of my wife whose obituary appeared in the Weekly a few weeks back. Her loss on October 7 in Ottawa was sadly anticipated and as a family we are all picking up the pieces after a life well lived. It is said that death is the final act of life. The pages of the Weekly reflect each week the lives of people who lived well and no longer are with us.
Life goes on, doesn’t it?