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Fortune Outdoors

Written by William Butt, reproduced from the Fortune Teller

July 2004

The expectation of warmer days has brought out a few things around town, have you noticed? The Fortune sea cadets were out in force making their contribution to the cleaning up of the town, as we all can see the discarded paper trays, cups, bar rappers, chip bags and lots of other things thrown away by our people and some of it by people in cars passing through. I have seen them and no doubt you have too; down with the window and out it goes to land in some bushes or gutter around town. I have only had the chance once to see someone and then they stopped long enough for me to remind them that was no way to treat our town. I quietly reminded them that there was a fine for littering and if it wasnít retrieved I would pass their plate number on to the proper authority. Needless to say, I got some sour look! But I was serious and I think anyone who witnesses such a thing should make it known that we donít tolerate that practice here in Fortune. The word will get around and they will find a garbage container somewhere in town. Thanks kids you did a great job; itís very noticeable.

We have a new addition to the duck family on the waterfront. 15 young was my last count. Please take your children out to feed the ducks. Let them know that we are their friends and mean them no harm. You will feel better for it.

Our labor of sifting mud, transplanting flowers and digging up new ground is paying off. New shoots are coming up every where. We have put in some new trees, new flowers and new shrubs. Some were given in exchange; others were bought for this seasons bloom. We are looking at them everyday to get the results of our labor.

The weatherman is not on our side this year; the month of June as been cold and wet it makes gardening very unpleasant.

On my walks I see almost everyone has a few flowers of one kind or another, but have you noticed that some peoplesí are out in bloom more than others? I guess it must be the way the sun plays on the beds. I noticed too that in some yards the trees are fuller than others; mine are really late this year. I have made a note to see if itís a yearly trend or just a happening this year. Please take notice and letís comment on it next year if we are on this side of the sod. Little things like this make life very interesting.

I had my first cut of rhubarb on the 8th, what a treat on the morning toast. It too has its drawback. With fresh fruit like that one tends to reach for that extra slice of toast, and I might add: if you are going to savor that extra piece get up early, then no one but you will know!

My favorite time of summer is just around the corner - fresh berries. Who can wait for that pie in the pan? Every kidís dream is to look in the mirror and see that beautiful blue ring around his or her lips and sometimes up the side of the face. Thatís one part of summer that makes it all worth while.

Sailboats are starting to come to the waterfront park. Thatís always a nice addition to our town. Also a few campers are coming to town. Every bit of revenue counts. Try to talk to as many new comers as you can, point out our trails and sites; let them know that we have things for them to see. Itís our points of interest that brings them here; we want them to come back again. To see our beautiful Fortune outdoors.

August 2004

Just when you think summer is going to happen we get a big let down. We had planned a trip on the old railway bed, we thought the time was right, the weather would be warm and it would be too early for the onslaught of black flies. We certainly miscalculated our timing - both for the good weather and the flies.

We started our trip at Goobies, unloaded the quads from the trailers, loaded the gear on the bikes and away we went to make our way across the island. For the first time traveler this is quite a ride. The scenery is awesome; the view from another side that you only see if you travel this way is breath taking to say the least.

Tom Douglas and Patty Parsons were my traveling partners and a good outdoor pair they were. Thatís a very important thing when making such a trip, to have people who like the outdoors and can take the good with the bad. Cooking is a big thing, outdoor cooks are a breed all their own, itís very hard to screw up on tin beans, we had some very good meals and a trip to Mary Browns is a blessing when all else fails.

On our trip the weatherman was promising some good weather but he failed to deliver. I have made this trip a few times and every time itís just as exciting; new things to see and of course new friends to make. As we journeyed through the towns we met people from other provinces of Canada. They think our people and province are very special, so of course we went out of our way to help them out and to keep that thought in their mind.

Our hotels were made of nylon and, except for a few flies and the snoring from the next tent, all hands had a good nightsí sleep every night. Itís the fresh air that gives the weary rider a fast to sleep boost.

This old railway bed is a very nice way to see the country from another side - the inland side. Itís quiet, peaceful and scenic. We did a little trout fishing along the way and, even though I was skunked on one outing, I still had my share of this delicious meal of fish at its best.

Fatherís day was coming up of course we wanted to be home for that; families calling from away to send greetings to their favorite fan - Dad. It made us hurry towards home for that special day.

July month had a weather change but, as you all must have noticed, our trees and flowers are at least a month behind everyone else on the island. All down through the country the trees and flowers are out in full bloom. I guess the capelin weather on the coast brings fog and dampness almost every day and it sort of keeps our temperatures down; the things just donít grow as well - but look at it now itís all out in full bloom!

Fortune Day was another great success; old and young people alike had fun; letís keep it up. Itís just another way to share our good times together in Fortune. Looks like the tourist trade is still good; I see some campers in the park and almost everyday people are lined up to go to the French islands. I hope they leave some of their tourist dollars here in town; we need it in the worst kind of way. Do you know of something that might bring in tourists? If yes, please pass on your thoughts to Council; you may have a money maker in mind and not be aware of it. We need to work together to bring our tax base back so that our town can improve its looks and money to help get our roads back in shape.Have fun this summer in and around Fortune outdoors

September 2004

The wait is over, warm summer days are here; with it comes the pest flies. If we are going anywhere near the woods we want to have a good fly dope or net to cover our face and neck. This is not a good time for long sleeves, but then we must remember the West Nile virus that has killed some people and made others very sick. We must protect our bodies from being stung by those pesky flies,

There is much activity along the roads where outdoor people park their cars then walk to their favorite pond to do a little trout fishing. On walks like this your eyes are scanning the marshes for bakeapple flowers and wondering if this is going to be a good year for the harvest of this special wild fruit. A lot of families look forward to having bakeapple jam on their morning toast. I have been there, got some but not a lot.

I have noticed the sea trout are hanging in the gut, going through the water change before they make a run to go up river to start life anew. I notice too that some real young boys are having a field day jigging the young trout that linger under boats while this water change is taking place. On the jetties young trout can be seen just laying there and not taken home to eat. This is such a waste. Please encourage your young boys not to do this, if they donít want them why not let them go? At least some of them will make it. Another practice I have seen on my walks is a few boys catching sea gulls on a trout pole. They bait the lure then toss it out for the gulls to take in. They then have a great time trying to land a sea gull with a trout pole. Not only is this against the law, the fine is very high. What boy would want a police record just for the sake of catching a gull with hook and line? Wildlife officers are on the watch now for this activity. Just a few days ago myself and the harbor authority supervisor saw one of our tame ducks with a fly hook and cat gut protruding from the corner of the ducks bill. This poor bird found it very difficult to eat. The hook has been removed. There are people that buy food just to feed the ducks. The children love this and can be seen almost any day down with their bag of goodies. It will do your heart good just to see the birds and kids together; the ducks eating out of their hands. Surely we donít need some kids abusing our little bit of wild life that gives other kids so much joy. Again, moms and dads, please ask your boys not to continue in this practice. Itís not a good sight for our visitors to see. We donít want them to leave with the impression that we have bad kids - we do not. It was just a prank for a laugh, not really thinking of what they were doing.

The food fishery got off to a good start once the weather settled down. Lots of boats and fisher persons could be seen at their favorite sport - cod jigging. Itís food for the table but itís also lots of fun looking for that big one,

My favorite topic I guess is outdoor gardening. Our few vegetables are coming along, I donít think we will flood the market, but we had the best strawberry crop in years. We cut our rhubarb 4 times and itís still growing. Flowers are very nice too; our transplanted trees are off and running; some new shrubs and plants added beauty to our garden. I hope all of your gardening was successful as well. Keep up the good work in and around Fortune outdoors

Fortune Teller

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