Along the 49th Parallel


Dreamcatchers in performance 2An energetic crew of singers, dancers, and actors performed in the Masonic Auditorium at the International Peace Gardens. While it felt a bit like an “Up with People” for the 21st century, there were significant differences. The material was developed in interviews and workshops across Canada as this is another Canada 150 project, included someone from every one of our 11 provinces and territory, and captured the spirit of inclusiveness with healthy representation from many different Indigenous, and settler communities including newcomer refugees and, an active performer in a wheelchair which did me in. I laugh easily, I cry easily. I was won over by the space and the sound was better than anything I’ve ever heard at Rainbow Stage for a facility like this.

The performers are all on the bus tomorrow for a trip to Flin Flon. What a great job, and the youthful spirit reminded me a lot of school tours back in the day when I worked in theatre. The evening was brought to the IPG  as part of the “Sharing our Stories” Initiative of which I am also a part as the Writer-In-Residence.


Hot, here in the Peace Garden. Tornado warnings given for neighboring towns on both sides of the 49th, even though we’re not in Kansas. The pattern for most of this summer month has run from overcast, in early morning, holding back on the much needed rain, but once, and then it came too fast. Wind, then cloudy, clearing skies and blazing sun from 3 to 9pm only losing its intensity in the last few minutes before disappearing behind the cottonwoods and then the horizon. Downright cool overnight. The boss bungalow faces due west with living room picture windows, dining room windows, and kitchen window getting the full brunt of solar energy! We are in farming country where the weather can make or break a year’s work. Slow rain, not hard rain, what is needed for the crops and for the Garden.

Majority of the evenings until tonight have cooled significantly, and it sometimes feels like there is a very small micro-climate here on Turtle Mountain. I actually slept with a quilt last night, yes the window was wide open and the fan was running, but with a quilt! Now I can hardly keep my clothes on. And so it goes weather or not, the sun rises over the Garden. Quick borrowed joke…Adam and Eve are sitting outside the gates of the other garden, the Garden of Eden, and so Adam turns to Eve and says “You know, I can’t help thinking there might be a book in this.” Maybe it’s just a joke for writers.

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