Saturday, September 12, 2009

Magical Newfoundland Moments, Part 1.

There are some moments in life that you look back on and say to yourself, oh that was the time, it was so inspiring, why didn’t I see it then? I’m getting better at observing in the now – more aware, more in the magical moments, more grateful for the gift of this incredible life.

Well, I’ve had a ton of those moments over the summer, let me tell you, and I had those moments in gallons in the last couple of days.

Seven of us headed over to Ferryland on Thursday afternoon for an evening of dinner theatre and to stay overnight in this glorious old house that has been painstakingly restored. Ferryland was settled in 1621 and there are significant archaeological exploration there as the site has been so perfectly preserved.

But we were there for the theatre, a wonderful show called "Outport Taxi". I don’t think I stopped laughing from beginning to end. The place was packed and as tourist season is closing, nearly all of us were Newfoundlanders. And as is the way when that happens, everyone starts talking to everyone else and the audience becomes one huge party.


We had a PJ gathering after the show in the big kitchen of the house, slurping drinks and evil junk food and shooting the blarney. I love nights like this, a direct golden path leading to the harvest moon above the water outside the door, every star as clear as a button holding back the navy blue sky and the lilt of female voices spinning the yarns of the tapestry that make up our lives.

We had an amazing breakfast provided by the owner and her husband, a good friend, up in her café on the hill above the house.

It never ceases to astonish me, the quality and diversity of artistic talent contained (or should that be brimming over in every direction?) in a thinly populated province like Newfoundland and the joy of discovering yet others like myself, the CFAs (“Come-From-Aways”), who visit here, become captivated (or taken by the faeries as some have it!) and make a startling, sudden and heartfelt decision to leave all that is familiar and come and live here.

Our first stop was to the home of an ex-pat Britisher, Nicola Hawkins, and her husband Andy who took this old church that had been abandoned for twenty years and made an exquisite home and galleries out of it. Here is the inside:
Breathtaking doesn’t do it justice. Example: stones from the beach in front are laid into white cement in their entire lobby floor, Canadian coins, mainly pennies, are embedded into their bathroom floor.



Greenhouses, dove cotes and two lightfilled workshops cling to the hills around the converted church:
A feast for the eyes and the soul. Among other creative endeavours Nicky takes old tin boxes that formerly housed biscuits, tea, tobacco, etc. and gently beats them into astonishing artefacts, chairs, chests and tables. She also paints and teaches Yoga. And took time away from her culinary endeavours to talk to us and show us her stained glass as her husband busied himself outside, laying out a 100lbs of cod to dry.

Apologies for the quality of my photos, all due to living in Dialup Dementia, soon to be Highspeed Heaven - if all goes well.



…..to be continued.

10 comments:

  1. Hello from the other end of Canada! I don't remember how I found you but I've been enjoying your blog for some weeks now and felt it's time to say how much I'm enjoying it. It's interesting for me to learn about life in Newfoundland which I've never visited and hope to one day. Ferryland sounds delightful. The archeological sites are on the top of my wish list!

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  2. You make Newfoundland sound very intriguing. I must come for a visit some day and hang out with you people. Ah, it's a dream, but I can have it, can't I?

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  3. Thanks Marja-Leena and welcome. You would definitely enjoy Ferryland and the digs are amazing!
    XO
    WWW

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  4. Irene:
    You just never know, I think if we desire something strongly enough it just happens. Manifestation? who knows. I'd love to have you here!
    XO
    WWW

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  5. That PJ party sounds wonderful and I love the idea of the pennies embedded in the floor.

    You seem to have had a heavenly summer, long may it last.

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  6. They've brilliantly transformed that old church into a beautiful home. And I love the idea of floors made of beach stones and coins. It only takes a little imagination to turn something derelict and forgotten into something magical.

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  7. It's kind of poignant that we discover late in life what really makes magic. Good friends, good times! and nothing to beat a bunch of dames carrying on!

    Oh and I am sure Newfoundland is lovely too ;-)

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  8. GM:
    Yes, this has been a remarkable summer/fall, we have to grab them as they fly as they may never come back again.
    XO
    WWW

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  9. Nick:
    i think guts comes into too. I am consistently amazed at how the ordinary gets transformed into something so incredibly beautiful!
    XO
    WWW

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  10. Annie:
    How true! As we age we really know how fleeting and precious are these moments!
    XO
    WWW

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