April 16, 1917 As The Crow Flies

April 16, 1917

I wrote a letter early this morning to my father. I promised Shannon that I would take the mail to the train station first thing in the morning. Shannon needed to get his order to the Renfrew Creamery so he couldn’t afford to miss the mail today.

Mildred was in the kitchen doing lessons from the Provincial Curriculum..  Mildred is Shannon and Annie’s daughter. Mildred looks like Shannon, but has the resolve of Annie. She’s pretty smart with numbers too and she’ll probably end up as a store or play clerk, like what Winnie does in Huntsville At thirteen, and this will be her last year of schoolwork (Gr. 8) unless she decides to go to Kingston for high school were Shannon has some family. She might go but my feeling is that she is going to stick around working at the Lodge. Mildred is too attached to her mother and grandmother to stay away for long.

I walked up to the train station to bring the mail. A  good mile or more  as the crow flies but you have to make your way around the chip yard, so by the time it’s done, it’s almost another half-mile.  Today was a problem for Shannon. He had to put an end to the milk cow (the one with mastitis) and needed the wagon.  

After dropping the mail at the station, I paid a visit to Annie Colson at the Outfitters Store. She was busy getting things ready. Said she didn’t have much time, but she made tea and we sat and chatted. She was happy to be on her own venture now. She worked for long enough at the Highland to get sick of the “Inners” as she called them. The city-slicking guests who dressed up and took for granted room-service in the wilderness. At least with outfitters store at the Algonquin Hotel, she hoped to deal with “Outers” as she calls them, people who know their way around outside.

I went to the east shore of Joe Lake and found a north-facing slope and made my sketch. It was similar to what I had painted a couple of days earlier, but more mature maples this time. There was a number a sap-pails on the trees. I don’t think these were Shannon’s or Ed Colson’s either. I had no idea whose pails these were, so I left them well enough alone.

The water is running hard at Joe Lake Dam. The streams have all broken free of ice. The winter scenes in the woods are becoming tiresome so I think I’ll try some rapids in the next few days.

I heard what I thought was thunder or dynamite. It wasn’t either. It was the lake ice cracking.

1 thought on “April 16, 1917 As The Crow Flies”

  1. I love your site. I am an Owen Sound girl in that both sides of my family are from Owen Sound. I was born there and most of my ancestors are buried in the same graveyard in Leith as Tom Thomson. I enjoy reading Tom’s writings from Christmas 1916 at Owen Sound and Annan before he passed away as he describes Owen Sound in the days of the time my Grandfather Neil Burns Graham was born. Is almost just like being there and very close to home for me. Thank you so much for this much valued information.

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