Port Blandford, N.L.
12 p.m.

Warming up

By Jonathan Parsons

The Packet, Clarenville, N.L.

www.thepacket.ca

Sandy Fowlow tees off before her daughter, Chelsea, on the second hole of the golf course.

On this occasion, she makes perfect contact with the ball and her drive is straight down the middle of the fairway.


Sandy Fowlow tees off during a golf tournament at noon on Thursday. Everyone joked she should have the camera on her all the time if her drives would be that straight. Jonathan Parsons photo

It is much like the contact she is making again with her daughter who has spent many recent years away in Vermont at boarding school and college to play hockey.

Sport can be a great way to spend time together—especially after spending some time apart. For mother and daughter, playing as part of a team in a local golf tournament is an excellent way to spend the day. These times have been a little less common and very soon Chelsea will be heading to Acadia University in Nova Scotia.

It can be hard to be away from home for such long periods but she is used to the distance by now. She says she wasn’t homesick for the first year.

Now, with Chelsea home again for the summer, the two can enjoy each other’s company and make for some lighthearted competition as well.

Chelsea is joining in on Sandy’s pastime, a weekly hobby she picked up over time.

Chelsea says she enjoys golfing with her mom, but Sandy jokes, “She likes to out-do me!”

The two women laugh as they shared a golf cart, critique each other’s swing and talk away on the cool, breezy day.

When asked how their golf game is coming along, Sandy says, “We’re warming up still!”

In Clarenville, NL, after the heat of July has subsided, perhaps temporarily, the town still goes through a substantial amount of water from its 1.215 million gallon water tank. In one week, 12.6 million gallons of water gush through its pipes and out of the taps in residents’ homes.

 

Sackville, N.B.
2:30 p.m.

Bingo caller gets star treatment

By Scott Doherty

The Sackville Tribune Post, Sackville, N.B.

www.sackvilletribunepost.com

“O-66, oh clickety click!”

Packed to overflowing with residents, silence and a sense of concentration reigns part of the time in the Drew Nursing Home’s main lounge, but at other times the air is filled with the deep, resonant voice of bingo-caller Bill Durant, the occasional stifled cough or murmured voice, and frequent outbursts of laughter in response to the 74-year-old volunteer’s good-natured teasing.


Volunteer bingo-caller Bill Durant helps residents at the Drew Nursing Home check their cards. Scott Doherty photo

The retired math teacher has been calling the numbers at the local nursing home for the past 13 years, but he’s quick to add he’s not the only volunteer, pointing to his wife who joins him every week, and several others who sit around the room, offering help to any residents who need it. And he’s quick to issue a plea, urging anyone interested in volunteering to come out and join them.

His landing the leading role at the weekly event, he insists, is solely due to his “teacher’s voice”.

While he may downplay his popularity, Drew staff members agree he’s something of a star at the weekly outings.

In between games Durant walks the room, stopping at tables and speaking with each resident, often exchanging what he calls “zingers” with them. And while he likes to tease the residents, he says, they give as good as they get, which he believes is why they enjoy themselves.

“Most people say it’s not the games they enjoy, it’s the atmosphere.”

Asked why he returns every week, his answer is simple.

“The smiles,” he says, with one of his own.

 

New Glasgow, N.S.
3:45 p.m.

Making ordinary memories

By Amanda Jess

The News, New Glasgow, N.S.

www.ngnews.ca

It is an ordinary moment.

The crack of a ball hitting a bat. The sound of little footsteps in centrefield. Laughter.


Ray MacGillivray throws a softball to one of his sons during an afternoon family game. Amanda Jess photo

“Dad!” Cory shouts. Ray MacGillivray, better known as Dad, turns towards his son, ready with mitt in the air.

Cory and Ben play at home with their father and in minor baseball games, the peewee and mosquito leagues, all the time.

Today, they wanted to go to the field.

“Anytime they want to do something, it’s worth doing.” Ray says parents are often pushing their children to practice a sport or a hobby.

It’s something the three of them can do together. He watches one of his sons send the ball up and over the back stop into a nearby cemetery.

Ray had told him not to hit in that direction, just as he told one of the boys not to hold his bat by the barrel.

He wasn’t stern, laughing when his kids made a silly mistake.

It may not be remembered tomorrow as an extraordinary day but Ray knows – years down the road – the memory will be a homerun.

 

Annapolis Royal, N.S.
4:30 p.m.

Man out of time

By Lawrence Powell

The Annapolis County Spectator, Middleton, N.S.

www.annapoliscountyspectator.ca

Ken Maher is in the right place – but in the wrong time.

He pulls the drawknife down the length of ash. People watch. A lot of people over the course of the summer. Thousands.


Lawrence Powell photo

Today, like most days, he’s on the wooden sidewalk on St. George Street in Annapolis Royal, Canada’s oldest settlement, in front of Canada’s second-oldest wooden building. Canada’s oldest Acadian building. He’s the interpreter at Sinclair Inn Museum.

Yet Maher isn’t a history buff. At least not in the academic sense. He likes old stuff. Old things.

“The love of old things was always there,” he said. “It wasn’t until I started this job that the draw of heritage really grabbed me.”

He’s always had a strong feeling that there was value in doing things with his hands, and despite no training he’s always made things, mostly in traditional ways. Old tools, old wood, old hardware.

Maher has spent eight seasons with the ghosts at Sinclair Inn. And there are ghosts. Documented.

He’s been many things. Always on the fringes of things cultural. He doesn’t see a path that led him here, But here he is. And he says it feels right. Sitting on his shave horse with a two-handled knife and the potential of a piece of ash feels natural. Normal.

People watch. Both feet are down hard to hold the big wooden clamp. The ash waits to be an axe handle. He feels he was born in the wrong time.

A hundred-and-fifty years too late. Stuck here. You can almost hear the clip-clop of hooves on cobbles.

• British officer Francis Nicholson captured what is now Annapolis Royal in 1710 using 35 ships and 2,000 British and New England troops.
• 1738 was the date of the first Masonic Lodge meeting in Canada held at what is now Sinclair Inn Museum.

 

Paradise, N.L.
5:30 p.m.

A growing young mind

By Glen Whiffen

The Telegram, St. John’s, N.L.

www.thetelegram.com

He's only 10 years old, but Zachary Howlett has a growing mind.

Like most other kids his age, video games, summer camps and weekend trips are a big part of his summer.


Zachary Howlett, 10, enjoys the peacefulness of gardening and watching his small potato garden grow in his Paradise, Newfoundland backyard. Glen Whiffen photo

Now toss into the mix, some, well, potatoes.

“I was a little bored so I started to try stuff like growing potatoes,” he says, while plucking weeds and watering healthy stalks in the backyard of his home in Paradise.

In his red T-shirt, shorts, sneakers and a ball cap, he looks ready to go out playing with friends on the street instead of the solitude of tending to his potato garden.

Mashed for Sunday dinner. Fries.

He just really likes potatoes.

It’s more than skin deep.

His mother Tracy recalls he’s always been interested in the potato garden at his grandmother’s home in Whiteway, Trinity Bay.

And his other grandmother in Petty Harbour used to grow spuds, as well.

Earlier this summer, Zachary asked his father if he could dig up a small area of ground and drop in some seed potatoes.

Next to his small garden sits his wheelbarrow and gardening shovel — tools of the trade for any true spud farmer.

The soft-spoken boy's freckled face is now scrunched up in thought.

Next year, he figures to grow even more potatoes.

But why limit his future at such a young age?

Maybe, he ponders, he could add in carrots, cabbage, radish and, maybe, tomatoes.

Sharing it all with his family and friends, what a great harvest that would grow to be.

 

The Authors

Glen Whiffen

Glen Whiffen is a reporter/ web editor with The Telegram/TC Media in St. John’s, N.L. He was born in Bonavista and has been working with The Telegram for 24 years.

Lawrence Powell

Lawrence Powell is editor of The Annapolis County Spectator in Middelton, N.S. and a career journalist who has worked in dailies and weeklies for 35 years. He has won numerous regional and national awards for his writing. He lives in Lawrencetown, Annapolis County.

Amanda Jess

Amanda Jess is a general assignment and arts reporter for The News in New Glasgow, N.S. for the past year. She enjoys coffee and long nights at the office.

Jonathan Parsons

Jonathan Parsons is a reporter at The Packet newspaper in Clarenville, N.L. Originally from Bonavista, Parsons provides sports coverage for the area, as well as a variety of other topics on a weekly basis.

 

Scott Doherty

Scott Doherty has been in the field of journalism for the past 16 years, most of it spent at the Sackville Tribune-Post in Sackville, N.B. serving as the paper’s managing editor since 2001.