Cape Breton evokes deep memories and strong emotions for me as well as a deep appreciation for the beauty of my adopted island. My hopes are that you too might find the photos evocative - maybe a view you've not enjoyed before, or an 'Oh I've been there', or if from away that you may be encouraged to visit this fair isle so that you might come to love and breathe Cape Breton as I do. One word about place names that I use - some are completely local usage while others are from maps of Cape Breton that I've purchased over the years. I frequently post travel and other photos that are of interest to me - and hopefully you.
On the right hand side bar find my take on Single Malt whiskey - from how to best enjoy this noble drink to reviews (in a most non-professional manner) of ones that I have tried and liked - or not. Also musings, mine and others, on life in general.
The crèche set gathered through the years from various sources starts to appear on the mantle, piece by piece, one each night, some weeks before Christmas with the Angel and the manger being the first to appear and so it goes night after night until Joseph and Mary appear on Christmas Eve - and then the baby Jesus in the night
On 21 December, St. Mary Anne's Episcopal Church had a quiet service of candle light with soft music and singing. The damp cold night, the lighted church, the empty church yard conveyed the hush of expectation even to the dull ears of this devout agnostic himself.
Looked over a lot of trees with the selection criteria being 'has to be taller than me' - two trees met the bill. I walked the field again then went back to chose the second tree (its' trunk was a little skewed and the trimming not quite as symmetrical so that decided it). Walked back, paid my $22 then drove round the field and loaded it up. Tomorrow night - the 23rd - we'll put it up and decorate while drinking wine and listening to a multitude of Christmas songs. Merry Christmas everybody or Happy Holidays if that salutation fits you better, my wishes for you are the same - love, health, a warm place to sleep, and good food to eat.
For my first sixty or so years of life our Christmas tree was a wild, shaped by nature not by shears, sort of tree - and was, when living here in Maryland, usually what we colloquially called an Elk Neck Pine that I or my father before me cut in the then semi-wilds of Elk Neck. However the press of rapidly expanding developments and population density stopped that holiday rite some time ago. So I grudgingly gave in to the 'buy-a-tree' idea and the artificial look of a geometric cone-shaped tree that grew in some old hay field rather than the natural sprawling uniquely shaped old wild pine. This particular tree farm was pointed out to me by my older son. When I first went there some fifteen odd years ago I was pleased by the pleasantness of the 'old fellow' (he was some few years older than me at the time and though not active now in the sales is still going at 98) running the operation and was able to swallow my chagrin at 'buying' what amounts to a manufactured tree. By now I accept it fairly graciously but still feel a nostalgia for the 'good-old-days'. So yesterday - the 21st, for I still am a Christmas-Eve-put-up-the-tree person even though this has slipped back to maybe the day before Christmas eve - I drove out through the still lovely rural country side to once again perform this centuries old historic ritual of bringing an evergreen tree into the house during the time of the winter solstice, though now it has became associated with most people to the birth of Christ.