Thursday, August 9, 2018

Marking Time

Whenever our housekeeper visits, we get out of her way.  The occasion has become a mini-vacation in some respects because we feel the necessity to abandon the apartment for virtually the entire day. Admittedly we've fallen into that comic trap of tidying up the place before it is cleaned.  While we don't do anything like scrubbing or vacuuming, we freshen the bed clothes and bathroom towels; we put away the myriad of things spread out on the bathroom and kitchen counters; the computers are closed and closeted; fresh foods are put on the shelves of cupboards.  I even wind the clocks!

It was in this purified state of mind that we easily resolved to go to the golf club for breakfast.  It makes for a culinary treat (mountains of protein) and it affords a beautiful way to start the day, sitting in the club house overlooking the first hole, watching the meandering Mississippi River.

After our uplifting breakfast we headed to the City to visit my elderly mother. Historically I visited my mother at her retirement home more often than I now do. But I am increasingly feeling my own old age. The drive there is through a very urban part of town. If I am obliged to park any distance from her retirement residence, it means a longer walk than I would prefer.  Besides I am convinced my mother doesn't need to see me every day and that she is just as happy to converse with me on the telephone (which I faithfully do every day). Nonetheless I still harbour an element of sympathy for her age and condition; so today I decided to bring her a box of chocolates. We stopped en route at Louise's Belgian Chocolates in Bells Corners.  There we ordered a box of various chocolates including marzipan (my personal favourite).

After the maternal visit we headed to the Village of Manotick where we briefly stopped to buy two bottles of water to quench the thirst arising from our salty breakfast. Then we sped to Highway 416 and directed ourselves southward. Our destination was the Village of Spencerville, a small Ontario town which I believe is predominantly unknown but which I had recently discovered was singularly charming.  The town is filled with the characteristic stone homes which were peculiar to the historic mills in the area.

As a diversion we ventured into a museum perched adjacent the South Nation River in what was the original grist mill of Peleg Spencer around the year 1811. The caretaker of the museum was a young girl who is related to one of the former mill owners.

The real charm of the journey was the drive northward along the largely untraveled rural roads which are parallel to Highway 416.  It is just short of miraculous to discover the many lovely homes on the way.

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