Monday, June 29, 2009


When I first came to the Harbour back in 1975, I think I arrived here in June sometime. Over the summer I built a small house and after five weeks of work was able to move out of my tent and into the house. It was by no means finished, but it was more liveable than the tent at that point.

I remember that I moved into the house in early September, which means that the five weeks spent building the house were all of August and a small part of July. If I moved up here in June with the intention of building a house, why did I not start until over halfway through July?

That's a question I have been thinking about lately. My memory for such details is not great and I did not write anything down then. I do remember going through a period of illness, I think a series of colds or bronchitis or some such thing. So I know that I was sick enough to not be able to work on the house for a fairly long period of time, and that may be the whole explanation.

The last couple of weeks here have been thoroughly wet. It rains almost every day, sometimes just showers, sometimes periods of heavy rain. The trail into my house is turning into a swamp; I can still get my bike through it but only just. Really, in this part of the world, you can't count June as part of summer, the weather in June is just too unpredictable and almost certainly involves a lot of rain. People say that a Nova Scotian summer only consists of a couple of weeks in July, the rest is just a tease.

But the worst of it is the mosquitoes, they are proliferating like crazy in all this wetness and they make trying to do anything other walk fast---very fast---almost impossible. Anything that will cause you to sweat (it's very muggy now) will attract the mosquitoes and simultaneously wash off any repellent you foolishly applied. Bug jackets I guess work, but so far I haven't invested in one. They block your view, they don't stop the high-pitched mosquito drone, and I suspect they make you even hotter and sweatier.

I have one or two projects in mind for this summer but so far I have not started on them and am increasingly more frustrated at the passage of time and lack of progress. So I've been thinking about that summer of 1975, how frustrated I had to have been watching June and half of July go by without anything accomplished at all. Living in a small tent with a two-year-old and a four-year-old, very conscious of the shortness of summer and the longness and coldness of winter. I remember working like a demon when I finally did get started; I went to bed exhausted every night and woke up every morning in so much pain I could hardly move.

But move I did, pretty much non-stop for five weeks.

I guess a month or more of sitting around being sick in the rain and mosquitoes will do that to you.


Barbara Anne said...

So you've been WonderWoman since 1975 and probably before that???? I am impressed!

What a cutie is asleep in that picture!


Zabetha said...

Well I wasn't really trying to boast, just consoling myself for my current frustration at complete idleness. Hopefully this is a temporary state!

Poor little guy, he fell asleep hammering a post!

All growed up now though, you can read his thoughts and exploits over at Bush Planes and Black Flies...

Hugs back!

20th Century Woman said...

Mosquitoes are the reason I don't want to spend the summer in Alaska. Spring and fall are lovely, but the bugs in summer spoil the rest.

And rain makes them worse. But it will soon stop. Take heart.

Barbara Anne said...

Hi Anne -

I googled "bush planes and black flies" and got the reverse as in a Canadian pilot with a wife and a blog called "Black flies and bush planes". Is that your long-ago sleepy son? Handsome and what a cute wife!


Zabetha said...

You're right Barbara Anne, I keep getting it reversed. In any case it's linked on the right-hand side of this blog.

Hugs to you

Wisewebwoman said...

Gee Annie, I'm way more than impressed with your doactivity. Waytago!
Not many mosquitoes here in NL, one of the reasons I love it and dems that do venture in get snapped up by the many dragon flies. We do have what they call 'nippers' which take a nice wee chunk out of any spare body parts. But season is short.