People and commerce, coming and going

Cakewalk Chronicles: thoughts and observations about small town life.

Fields – Good News!

Fields store won’t be closing after all! That is great news for those of us who depend on the outlet for so many household and personal things.  Everything from laundry baskets to underwear. Thanks to Kelrockden Holdings who’ve been negotiating and have advertised in the March 20 issue of The Journal, that a new corporation has taken over the Fields chain. It is a great relief to consumers, as well as employees, no doubt.

Passing of a matriarch

I shared many a drink at the Royal Canadian Legion with Don and Teresa Kennedy in years past. Don worked for the Village of Ashcroft for years. Teresa and he were Legion members. The couple had a large family and made many friends here and in Kamloops. Teresa’s droll sense of humor and her strong family values were hallmarks. Don worked as a cowboy for years, and met Teresa through his ranch work. He was a good worker. I can recall, when we lived on Bancroft Street, sometimes forgetting to put out the garbage. But Don and Wes Common would go into the yard and get the can, and we’d come home and find it empty on the lane. God Bless ‘em! St. Gerard’s was packed March 17. Standing room only. The family gave Teresa a fitting send off, and I was glad to be part of it.

Congratulations and Happy Birthday

Sunday, March 19 was blessed by a twin-happy event. Well known building contractor Micheal Godau’s 55th was observed by family and friends at the Legion, and the handsome couple, Miguel and Jessica announced their engagement. The happy couple mingled with the guests, and reunited with former teachers, some who came from Kamloops for the occasion. Linda, Miguel’s mom, prepared a sumptious feast, a smorg of fine food that had us all munching, and going up for seconds. Even thirds. (Yeh, I counted).

Cripes – Scypes!

What’s the world coming to when people run for office and can’t find the time to be physically present at the meetings? Half a council on Skype in Cache Creek. You know, that monitor with the image of the person and the voice that is not quite in “sync”, – like some futuristic science fiction gothic fuzzy wuzzy. Gad! Sure, there are emergency times when it just isn’t possible to be present at a meeting. But regular use of Skype is scarcely an example of Democracy in action. But why am I not surprised by this flagrant use of the techno? Critics in Cache Creek are justifiably protesting. Keep it up! Maybe Council will wise up.

Sears and Workwear

I sure miss our No. l sales person, Gerry Anderson, who operated that fine store on Railway until a few weeks ago. The store is up for sale. I bet there are a lot of people in town who miss Gerry’s special brand of service, – whether she was fitting you with a pair of walking shoes or helping you find what you need in the catalogue. Hopefully, the store will re-open soon.  Sometimes, when it’s time to retire. it is time. We wish you all the very best Gerry!

Quebec’s student protest

I make no apologies for reading newspapers and listening to the news. But that university student rioting in Quebec over increased tuition fees seems an ominous kind of reflection of what happened during the Stanley Cup mayhem in Vancouver. Again, you wonder why the violence? Many of those youth both in Vancouver and Quebec came from middle class families. The Quebec tear gas and riot gear episode speaks poorly of citizens getting an education that will provide them with good jobs down the line. And consider this. Quebec has the lowest university tuition fees in Canada!

A pictorial history of Ashcroft

I’ve received assurance from Kevin Kierans, TNRD’s Director of Libraries that the art collection I donated to the Ashcroft Library has a permanent home there.

This is a great relief. The history of Ashcroft is in that collection. Homes and buildings of Ashcroft, some dating from the village’s earliest history and some of which no longer exist, are depicted in the collection. If at some future time, our Ashcroft Library ceases to function or no longer exists, the paintings will remain in the village, offered to some public building here. I haven’t stopped painting the village. It’s alleys, churches, cottages, are still very much my favorite subjects.

Brain storming

The session at my place earlier this month brought a nice group out – 10 in all, to discuss where Ashcroft is going. Ideas and reflections were freely given. Consensus was that Ashcroft needs to concentrate on the resources it has in its colorful history, and in its generous artistic and cultural endeavors. John Kidder advised about his negotiations to take over the ownership and operation of the Opera House and the formidable things needed: volunteers and willingness to support and participate. But John assured that anyone working for the Opera House will be paid a salary, too. This is a project we can all get behind. John’s experience in management and his political contacts can be of inestimable value.

Old – versus brains and experience

When I consider the senior citizens of these villages who manage and operate the various resources we all depend on, I can’t count them all.  Yet, that old bugaboo persists, that once your hair turns white and your hands get gnarled, your brain no longer functions and your experience counts for zilch. Mel Rothenburger, editor of Kamloops News and former Mayor of Kamloops wrote a column on this theme that prompted this inveterate letter-to-the-editor-writer to thank Mel for hitting the nail. I get so gd tired of being patronized by younger persons who think they’ve invented the wheel. As far as the media is concerned, I’ve been in contact with them long before some of those younger ones were born. Patience old girl! You’ve got to put up with a society that thinks age means you’ve lost most of your marbles. There is a term, long out of use. I wish it would return. It is “venerable old age”. When the younger people lose respect for the older people who helped build this country and worked full time at jobs for many years and were good at what they did, that is a very sad commentary indeed on our society.