Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Slife Three

Slife = Slice of Life:
A weekly bit showing our daily world, 
shared with online friends to get to know one another better.
Vacation Diary Day Three:

Am cooking a turkey, one of those discount turkeys we bought on sale and stuck in the freezer. It smells insanely delicious. After reading My Great White North's blog and salivating over her turkey pictures, I knew it was only a matter of time before I hauled the old bird out and stuck it in the oven.
We're having some of Dave's family for dinner tonight. I'm sure they'll taste delicious.
While we wait for the visitors I'd like to show you this picture of our new birdhouse. This thing cost more than my friend's boob job, I kid you not. But it is guaranteed to thwart squirrels (as does the boob job, I hear). 
Not that I object to feeding the squirrels: in fact, we will continue to feed them at our old feeder, using cheap seed.
We were just tired of feeding that chubby old rodent our good stuff.
So far the squirrel thwarting gadget is doing well.

During my gallivanting today I fell in behind this Culligan water truck on Highway 11. LOVED the picture on the back of the skinny lady holding up a gigantic water jug. Not only holding it up but smiling about it, too. I am impressed by her strength but I'm asking why she doesn't just yell, "Hey, Culligan-Man!" and let him do the grunt work? Women's Lib, eh? Pfttt... now we have to carry our own water, hold down jobs and still give birth. What was Gloria Steinem thinking???

Went to the Bracebridge Courthouse yesterday. Not for any reasons you might be thinking. This stately old building houses several government offices including the driver's licensing bureau and the land registry office, both of which I needed to go to. Isn't this how everybody spends their vacation? Doing errands they put off all year long? Oh, and I also got my library card, but not at this building. At the library. But I forgot to take a picture.

This is part of the land registry office. It looks so much like a John Grisham movie that I kept looking over my shoulder, waiting for Matt Damon or Tom Cruise to show up. I was there, rubbing shoulders with real estate law clerks, researching former owners of our little log cabin, which, we were told by the tax department, was built in 1880. I wasn't sure what to expect but it was easier than I imagined. The lady behind the counter asked me a few questions and then went directly to one of the many thick binders shelved in the library-like room. She opened one binder up and pointed to the four or five pages that dealt with my concession and lot number. I was amazed: there, in black and white, were the names and dates of all the real estate transactions on the property over the years.

This is the first page dealing with our property. If you click on the photo you should be able to see a bigger version and, with luck and reading glasses, see the first few transactions. Two of the highlights of the page: at one point the Sheriff of Muskoka claimed the property because of unpaid taxes: $24 was owed to the Township of Draper. Take that as a lesson: always pay the tax man, even if it's only a few bucks. The other interesting thing was seeing the Ontario Hydro Electric Commission paying for the rights to turn the property into a floodplain. This was in 1930: it must have been when Hydro was building the big hydroelectric dams along the river.
Later today my friend Mark did some quick googling and came up with more information about the first inhabitants of our cabin. They were Irish farmers: 50-year-old Richard Doherty, his 52-year-old wife and their six children. That was quite an age to be leaving Ireland to head to the wilds of Ontario to try to farm on the rugged granite of the Canadian Shield. I am looking forward to finding more out about this intriguing wee home on the Muskoka River.

Just around the corner from us is the tiny hamlet of Muskoka Falls. Famous for its waterfall, the hamlet has a school, a cluster of homes and a quaint little white church. Whenever we drive by I say to Dave, "Wouldn't that be a fine little church to get married in?" He usually ignores me. Sometimes he says, "You're not helping your cause."

While I was taking these photos the neighbours came out on their front porch for a smoke and asked me if the church was up for sale. They thought I was a real estate agent. I tried to assure them I'm not but I know they thought I was lying. So now everybody in town is probably gossiping about the church being up for sale and that lying old woman who was taking photos. 

Back home again, with a few flurries coming down. I never get tired of this view. I can hardly wait till the ice goes out and I can go canoeing.


  1. Hey great view-can I come up from TO and paint your view sometime?

  2. i love the little church, apart from the jut off the side, it looks just like the 175 year old church we attended when i was a wee one.

    and now i'm hungry for turkey...

  3. Hope you saved me some turkey! The birdfeeder is such a cool design but like you - I like the squirrels too much to stop feeding them entirely. Lately, though, they've been using my truck as a food storage bin.
    The rest of the photos are wonderful too - I'm chuckling over you being the topic of gossip for taking photos of the church.

  4. I won't stop bears. My squirrel proof feeder showed how useless it is against bears two days after we put it up.

  5. Yes, but you bought the squirrel proof feeder.
    Not the bear proof feeder.

    How was work today?


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