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Fortune Outdoors

Written by William Butt, reproduced from the Fortune Teller

October 2006

Summer is taking on a new look; things like yards and houses are taking on a new look; fresh paint jobs, old tree branches that have broken or blown off during the winter are collected and left by the side of the road for pick up. We can also see our long distance runners on the move in the evening times getting in shape for the Telly Ten k to be run in the Holy city with different age groups competing for a chance to show that they can still run 10 k and look good at the finish line. Our runners gave a real good effort; their times were not too shabby either.

We are still waiting on something to happen to our employment crisis; still nothing in sight; a few projects around town to help keep the wolf from the door. We all hope something will break soon.

We have one bright spot in town that we can be proud of - the Interpretation Center. I had the privilege of attending the pre-opening and was invited to the official opening and I must say it is a great success story, with lots of hard work for all of those who made it happen.

It was a great sunny day for the occasion. It was well represented by people from most towns if not all on the Burin Pen. We can be proud of the beautiful building and its display of artifacts that is on display inside. As I moved among the people I listened with interest to the comments made, a few of them even said they would like to have had that in their town.

The food and refreshments were second to none; the way that the workers had it presented was an art work in itself, and received great comments on how beautiful it was done. The selection of food was arranged in such a way it made all the visitors take notice of a job well done. The staff must be commended for it; you have shown that you take great pride in what you do and you did it very well.

This is the year to compare winters to the old sayings, lots of dogwood berries means a good winter for sure. Well we had that last winter, every dogwood tree was loaded with berries and the winter wasnít all that bad. However, if you havenít noticed, this year our dogwood berries are very few, nothing compared to last year. Are we going to have a bad winter? Itís a wait and see thing, but I have my own thoughts and predictions about it. This will be a good winter for skidooing; of course I could be wrong - it wonít be the first time.

Our summer was not all that bad, so letís hope for a good winter that we can all enjoy; not too cold, easy on the pocket book for fuel, for home heat and recreation as we donít have much more to look forward to as yet.

The tropical storm brought a lot of destruction to the town and surrounding areas. Almost everyone that had trees lost one or two, some people lost more. It was the worst storm in a long time, and of course we nearly had a bad accident on the waterfront. One of our townís citizens got washed overboard while trying to secure his boat. He fell between the boat and the wharf and washed up under the floating dock. A very lucky man that there was help around to rescue him from underneath. A section of the dock had to be removed in order to get him out; he was rescued without very much injury. The western pier got some real destruction to it as well; I hear it has to be totally replaced and a lot of work done in the area.

The storm had a great impact in and around Fortune outdoors.

November 2006

A little frost on the windshield brings a cold chill down your spine; it doesnít last because we are experiencing beautiful fall weather; the temps get up there and we are reminded of the summer days with warm temps. We have had a great autumn. We had some poor weather in June and July but once autumn came in - the sun. God has smiled on us very often. A lot of people are saying global warming, maybe it is, but if it is the warm weather sure makes one forget the waste we pump into the atmosphere.

We are still on the wait and see list with the plant; the workers must be frustrated when they look to that coming summer and still no hope as yet, but we must keep our fingers crossed and hope that our council and Concerned Citizens Committee can find someone to take over the plant and give our plant workers a hope for the future.

Nobody wants to pack up and leave to work elsewhere in Canada, most have their roots and homes here and want to stay. I donít think I would want to have to pull up stakes now and move away to look for work and leave family behind. Surely something will break soon; donít give up hope yet.

Itís a long winter to come, there will have to be some cuts in the things that we do this time of the year, but it will get better. It doesnít matter to me, I am not looking for work but I like to see everyone else thatís looking get something to do. Looks like the projects are getting clued up; I hope everyone got their stamps.

It will soon be time to put the ice on the arena. That will give the children somewhere to go to get their exercise. I donít get much now, only what I get crawling over the marsh looking for marshberries and cranberries, but its something that I enjoy. I have my winters jam all picked and put away. I often wonder how much is left on the barrens and marshes that are never picked. Itís a shame because its one of the best fruits you can eat, wild berries, can be found almost anywhere that you might look.

Another good year for the moose; there have been lots of reports that they can be seen in this area. I hope some can survive the hunt and get a chance to stay in the area for another breeding season. I donít get to walk the country to look any more, but wherever my Bike can take me, I take advantage of the trails. I still do outdoor cooking whenever the opportunity arises and look forward to it in and around Fortune outdoors.

December 2006

The warm winds of Summer still linger on here in the south; temperatures are of a record high for this time of year. Thatís good for lots of reasons, easy on the fuel consumption, a saving on the electric heat to mention a few. Lots of changes can be noticed around town. People are stock piling their wood supply that may take them over the cold days of winter; we know we are going to get some very cold days yet before we get back into the warm days of Summer again.

I keep a weather log as part of my amateur radio hobby. I looked back and there is a great change in the temperature all back through the past four years, some as high as 8 degrees; not every day, but itís something to think about if you keep records. I did it for only the month of November.

For those who donít get to the waterfront, there has been some activity around the harbor. Divers can be seen in different areas checking the wharfs for possible repairs, and checking the sewage outfalls that must be addressed before the prospective fish companies that plan to move in. It all takes time and we must be patient with our council and town planners; they want to get the best deal for us.

A lot of our out-migrated plant workers are returning home after a Summer of working in other provinces; they are like the rest of us, hoping that next season they will be able to get their employment here and not have to move away. The first year mostly it was only the men that left home but if this trend is to continue we will see families move and most wont come back it will be our townís loss.

A bit of trail news, one of my friends told me that he heard that I was collecting money for the trail; nothing can be farther from the truth. Like most of our trail riders I pay my part when asked to do so a couple times a year, but I want to make it perfectly clear to those who donít want to pay, and everyone who pays knows who they are, to quit spreading rumors about all the money thatís collected for the trail. We can live without your money and your rumors, the trail will get done.

The fall cook-ups are still very good pastime for old retired workers who love the outdoors and can be seen every now and then going their merry way to the hill(Grassy patch) or up over the farm to the nor west trail with the outdoor cooking gear on board the bikes for a day outdoors.

I have heard that someone is rabbit snare robbing taking rabbits and also taking up the slips as well. For those of us who put out slips there is nothing more discouraging than to go to your slip, see the fur -the rabbit and slip gone. What kind of person would stoop so low as to take away maybe a meal from a family that really needs it in those trying times? It may be a trapperís way of getting a little extra money to buy something for a family that really needs it; shame on you whoever you are. Try to help your fellow man not rob him - especially when he is trying to supplement his income in and around Fortune outdoors.

Fortune Teller

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