Tunnel Gift

I haven’t written anything since the FF two Wednesdays ago.  I dunno what’s up… I was looking at my blog and found that I had twenty-one (yes, 21!) drafts!  Seriously?  I do this to myself like all. the. time.  I start something, get side-tracked, go back, don’t feel it, put it aside and next thing I know the story is too old.  I decided I’d do a clean-up but not before getting my steps in, which, being a non-running day, can prove difficult.

For those who don’t know it, I have challenged myself to do 10,000K steps per day for a whole year.  82 days left to completion! (And I cannot wait for that day to arrive without making time go any faster, if that makes any sense whatsoever.

I finally convinced myself that I could sacrifice an hour of my time (on a beautiful day, no less) to “git ‘er done”.  I made the decision to walk towards a park that I thought was not too far. Right. Wasn’t too far by bicycle!  No matter. I wanted a new path today because no matter how much joy I find in taking the same path over and over again and discovering something new, today was not that day.

I walk past the golf course and know that soon, I will be off this loud and noisy and dirty boulevard.

I see there is graffiti in the tunnel and decide to go take a closer look-see.  This is where part of this post turned into an hommage to Resa’s Graffiti Lux Art & More blog.  What a find!  It started off with a quote that translates to mean:  “Yesterdays follow me and ressemble me less and less”.

A lovely and colourful ’50’s style scene unfolds.  The first frame feels like it doesn’t belong and was created by a totally different person.  Or actually, like a commercial before the main event.

First one side:

And, then, the other side:

Truly amazing work.  It took me three tries to film this without interruption from cyclists and golf cart drivers. It finally worked when I went backwards. Apologies for the movement. It’s hard to walk and hold a phone!

Time to keep moving as my destination was still a ways away.  I went another block or so and turned onto a street, getting away from the boulevard.  At the end of the street, I looked left and ta-dah!  I could see the park.  Two blocks away.  Finally.  I couldn’t find an entrance so I cut in, knowing I would eventually catch up with one of the many trails within.  I chose one that is used for mountain bikes in summer and snowshoes in the winter (note to self:  definitely must come back with snowshoes this winter).  I had lost interest in exploring this park more fully (Michel-Chartrand) knowing I had a good trek back. I shall definitely return but will take my car to get there and give myself that two hours completely in the park instead of wasting most of it on a sidewalk.

FYI, I totally busted my goal, getting over 13K steps.  Woot!

Glorious Autumn

dVerse spoke to me today!  Kim from Writing in Norfolk is hosting and today’s theme is:  Haibun Monday: Being But Human – what is it she is asking? This:   to write about a time when you last watched stars, a storm, the sea, an animal, or something else in nature that left you with a sense of wonder or awe. Aim to write no more than three tight paragraphs, followed by a traditional haiku that includes reference to a season. Hmmm. Here goes:

 

 

As I walk along in an autumn woods with no sounds save the crunch of dried leaves beneath my feet, the wind rustling the leaves above me and maybe the occasional trill of a bird I find my heart slowing, my breath deepening, my muscles relaxing and my mind freeing itself from whatever worries I might have.  As this happens, I become more aware of my surroundings:  I marvel at the velvety, almost neon green moss growing on fallen trees.  I delight in the different kinds of fungi growing here and there:  white, bright yellow, striped greys, polka-dotted red.  I watch and smile at the antics of squirrels and chipmunks darting here and there, looking for nuts they will hide away for the winter.  The sky is a shade of blue not seen the rest of the year, which makes the yellows and reds and oranges pop all the more.  I am blessed to live through this season every year.

Colours brilliant
Fall into crispy ground
Joy is found in death

Walktober 2020

“Fall has always been my favorite season. The time when everything bursts with its last beauty, as if nature had been saving up all year for the grand finale.”
Lauren DeStefano, Wither

It’s here!  One thing we can count on, Pandammit or not!  Walkober is what I’m talking about. Thank goodness for peeps like Robin who keep the good things happening, don’t you think?

Mother Nature decided to be most generous last weekend and I went out both days with my bestie, Julie. First time I am accompanied during Walktober and it was lovely. The result? Over 500 photos.  No, don’t worry, I won’t post them all here!  But oh… how to choose…

On Saturday we met up around 2:00 pm at the St. Bruno National Park.  There are miles of trails and there were quite a few people so we kept trying to take the paths less travelled, so to speak. We “done good”, I think.

We decided to search out some fungi, figuring there must surely be some, somewhere!  There were, indeed. Do not ask me to name a single one. I’ve zero clue.

I did not realise there are five lakes in this beautiful park.  We knew we wanted to make our way to the main one (in our minds, the only one) and tried to find a trail less populated without getting lost.  I’m assuming this lake was the main Seigneurial one! So beautiful and did not disappoint.

We found a lovely Salon de Thé that was open and were pretty sure would also have coffee, but if they didn’t, a nice hot tea would do.  They had the machinery necessary for us to each have a latte – would have been nice if it was hot and had more flavour but hey, it was something.  I do know that I would love to return post-pandemic to be able to sit for a spell.

Coffee in hand, we continued our walk.  We both wished we hadn’t missed the reds of the season. It’s amazing what one week does in terms of autumn colour.  The oranges were beautiful and we could see the yellows were truly taking over but when we saw red?  How could we not stop?  Though bright green and white also got our attention.

 

We headed back, passing by someone’s property, marvelling how people who lived in these areas were never outside to enjoy their own views.  Then again, when you have all sorts of people traipsing around your backyard, would you?  Once upon a time, those who lived here had found tranquillity. Now, they were smack-dab in the middle of a national park.  I might wait for after-hours myself, now that I think of it.

Have I lost you yet?  No?  Oh my goodness. You are all so kind.  That was day one.  Now, onto day two and the Parc National des Îles de Boucherville…

“The magic of autumn has seized the countryside; now that the sun isn’t ripening anything it shines for the sake of the golden age; for the sake of Eden; to please the moon for all I know.”
Elizabeth Coatsworth, Personal Geography: Almost an Autobiography

This time, we decided to get an earlier start. We didn’t stay long enough for the sunset the previous day and we couldn’t get to this park by sunrise, but still.  We didn’t want the same time frame.  We should have packed ourselves a lunch but that would have required either of us to be organised and honestly? It was Sunday. We have to be organised all week, let the weekend be more relaxed, eh?

We met, this time, at around 11:00?  Five little islands with 21 km (13 or so miles) or trails form this national park, it’s also a great place for kayaking, paddle boarding, picnicking, and you can even camp there – when life is normal, that is. Again, there were quite a few people. This is when I appreciate my time working on shifts. I could visit these areas during the week. Alas, those days are over. For now.  We set off, grabbing a map of the area.  We did take it out once to make sure we were going in the right direction and according to Jules, we were (I suck at reading maps.)  It was another spectacular day of golds and oranges with a few pops of red.  We were so hoping to see some wildlife – there are deers galore, but other than a frog, ducks, geese, a snake that slithered too fast to capture, and a few caterpillars – nuthin’. Sigh. But I have to say, it was pretty cool looking at my hometown from across the river. We had a perfect view of the old Ste. Famille Church.

It’s amazing how two areas, a mere twenty-minute-drive apart, felt so very different. There were so many textures to enjoy.

As we walked along, Julie reminisced about late summers spent working on her friend’s farm. (Actually, I also went to high school with Marielle – just didn’t hang around her!)  They were expropriated some time just after we graduated from high school and are now settled up the road from my childhood house. Julie was trying to visualise where it was exactly but we could not find any “remains”.  So we kept walking until we spotted an old barn and, without having to discuss it, started towards it, through a field that has been ploughed. How weird. Of course, once we crossed the uneven terrain to arrive at the said barn, we saw there was a sort of road that we could have taken. What’s the adventure in that? And what is so intriguing about old barns?

Once we were done exploring this old barn, we followed the “road” and it led us to three more abandoned buildings. One looked like a storage shed for, I’m not sure, grain for animals? It was very low to the ground. One looked like an atelier (workshop) of some sort and the main one might have been a stall for horses – I didn’t venture inside but there was a structure that looked like it might have been a well once, right beside it.

After taking a bazillion pictures, we slowly made our way back.  We ended up at a lookout point and found that as we watched the grasses sway like waves, and the few trees in the middle, it gave us a sort of African Serengeti Steppe vibe (okay, maybe we were both weird but you be the judge!

There is a golf course on one of the islands and the only way to get there is by ferry. How cool is that?

Our feet were feeling the two days’ worth of walking and we were glad to see the parking lot.  Such great company and we are planning on making this a regular thing.

I wasn’t planning on going on and on but it’s all Robin’s fault. She said go big for this year. So I did!  Hope it wasn’t overkill. 🙂

Heck, I’m plumb tuckered out from creating this ramble, so I’ll be taking a week off starting tomorrow – completely unplugging.  Please note, if I don’t get to any comments right away, don’t think I’m dissing you, I’ll take care of them upon my return.

Weekend Writing Prompt #179 – Lucid

A word prompt to get your creativity flowing this weekend. How you use the prompt is up to you. Write a piece of flash fiction, a poem, a chapter for your novel…anything you like. Or take the challenge below – there are no prizes – it’s not a competition but rather a fun writing exercise. If you want to share what you come up with, please leave a link to it in the comments. Should you want to play along, click here and leave a link in Sammi’s comments.

 

Wind and leaves create a symphony
in the crisp, autumnal air

Sun renders all it touches
with a lucid and effulgent glow

No deer, no beavers,
no racoons, to be seen

But loons and mallards
caterpillars, a frog

add to the luminescent day