Out of the Frying Pan

Beach Day

Heatwaves. Wildfires. Grizzlies. Mudslides. Avalanches. Floods. I came to the conclusion many years ago that there are so many things trying to kill you in the BC Interior that it's foolish to focus too strongly on any one.

In recent weeks, daytime temperatures have demolished all-time records, wildfires are increasingly raging all around me, and dehydrated bears keep stealing my watering can despite my best efforts to thwart them.

I can't help noticing that COVID-19 is, for the first time since early 2020, registering as the least of my worries. I'm aware of its continuing existence, but southeastern BC has not witnessed the raging pandemic that most of the rest of Canada has and mostly I've spent the last year hiding in the forest, wondering if I will ever be able to venture near civilization again without being masked like some wild west bandit.

I can now cautiously say that we seem to be coming out the other side. And as Canada starts the slow ascent to normalcy that will hopefully result in our collective freedom this fall, I will once again be hitting the road, this time running a series of workshops aimed at teaching genealogy enthusiasts how to transform their personal histories into stories that will inspire and delight readers.

It's the first step in what promises to be an interesting -- and delightfully ZOOM-free -- future as we collectively learn how to navigate a social landscape that cannot help but to have been warped radically by more than a year of forced isolation. I'm guessing we'll stumble a bit at first. But I'm also guessing we'll get back into the swing of things fairly quickly. 

I, for one, am looking forward to once again being able to meet my readers face-to-face instead of computer-to-computer. Say what you will in favour of Zoom, Skype, and similar platforms that have allowed us to digitally connect over the past year, there is no substitute for human interaction.

Based on the real-life 1877 killings of William and Charles Bryan by their neighbours, The Haweaters brings to life some of Manitoulin’s earliest European settlers as they struggle against nature, poverty, and each other in a collective quest to leave their dubious pasts behind them and attain prosperity in this rugged wilderness community. Learn more.