Wow, it seems like forever since I've written my monthly update! Well, I DID miss September, so now I'm combining two months into one. Seems like so long that I can't remember all that's happened in the past while. OK, there was Vishten, Hedgerow, Simon & Garfunkel Tribute, Gary Fjellgaard & Friends (a show which garnered a beautiful review by the Guardian's Todd MacLean). We've really enjoyed these past couple of months as things have slowed down just a tad and we've gotten the movies underway as well. We're still learning as we go as far as what people will come out to see and what they won't. A couple of hard lessons were learned in the past two months, I'll readily admit. The post-summer off season has posed some challenges. Not to say that folks aren't still making it out to "the house", but it doesn't seem as "happenin'" as the summer was :). But, we're keeping the faith and always realigning our strategy in order to make a go of it. "Every strike leads me closer to the next home run", said Babe Ruth. We've got a few plans and changes in the works. Mum's the word until the big reveal!
THE biggest event that happened within the past couple of months (aside from our 1 and a half year old saying many more new words, our 5-year-old starting Kindergarten, our 12-year-old thriving in Junior High, our 14-year-old being voted Vice President of Student Council, Kris running, and winning the 10K in 34:22), was the big college road trip that the married couple never took and then got to take! On October 1st, Kris and I flew to Ottawa and then rented a Smart Car and drove an hour to Smiths Falls, ON to pick up our "new" 1973 Volkswagen Beetle! I've always wanted to own one! My love of Beetles stemmed from my hero, Grandma Gete and Grampa Anderson owning one of their own in the 70's. I've always had this memory of seeing their Bug parked in their yard on Forrest St., Sydney Mines after it was off the road and in need of repair. It was yellow (although my sisters claim Gram & Grampa owned a black Beetle - well, maybe they had two?). My mind says it was yellow, whether it's true or not, and I always felt sorry for it and wanted to get it going. I have never in my life driven in a VW Beetle that I can remember, but for some reason, held this lifelong dream of someday being the proud owner of one. My Mom tried to make this dream come true for me by starting a collection of die-cast metal Bug collectibles that she ordered from a magazine. She bought me one every year some time in the early 90s. I cherish those little cars and love Mom for doing what she could to feed my Bug fetish! But, leave it to Kris to actually go out and drive one home to our yard for my birthday, all the way from Ontario :) It wasn't only a great b-day present, but we made a second honeymoon out of it and it was a much needed getaway. We drove through upstate NY, the Adirondack Mountains (breathtakingly beautiful, especially Lake Placid) - Vermont, New Hampshire, Maine, very carefully, not driving past 100K and stopping every 1.5 hours to let "The Love Bug" cool down. We were given a few thumbs up, waves and smiles as well as questions about the car along the way. I felt like I was that clown in the 1970s Fisher Price wooden jalopy pull toy, bouncing up and down in my passenger seat :) The car itself isn't very "bump proof", for lack of a better term. But, boy the seats are some comfortable and springy!
We eventually made it to Brett & Tracey's in Saint John, where Kris opened for Bruce the next night at the Blue Olive. One of the waitresses told me that Kris has the best voice she's ever heard and and wondered why he wasn't putting on his own show at the venue! The only downside of the whole trip was the late night, 3.5 hour car ride from Saint John to home without heat (this bug doesn't have a heater, but I don't hold that against it!). My body wanted to sleep, but the near zero temperature was keeping me awake, so it was this Ying and Yang struggle goin' on that I seemed to have no control over. Couldn't wait to get home and hit the pillow! We eventually did around 2 a.m. and it was great to be back safe and sound after a full 4 days away from the kiddies and the comforts of home. Thanks to Nanny & Grampy for taking great care of them all and to Mik and Jen's friends and their parents for letting them have sleepovers, too :)
Well, this orange beauty will not resurface til the Spring, but I plan to get back in the drivers seat then and show her off (if I can get real good at the unusual clutch/brake system)! Our plan is to use her as our little promo car for the theatre and take her in parades and scoot around town from time to time. I'm not a show off and I hope I'm not perceived as one. It will just do me proud to drive this nostalgic car and to pay tribute to my family history in a strange sort of way (Mels' World!). Kris and I are both proud of our find and thank Dave, the Love Bug's latest owner, for taking such good care of her over the past 8 years. He wanted to make sure that she would be well taken care of. The first thing he said to us when we met him just outside his Smiths Falls neighbourhood was, "Well, you're an adventurous couple, to say the least!". The last thing he said was, "Take good care of her!". We will, Dave!
Moving on, our latest news is that the PEI Rural Beautification Society awarded Harmony House Theatre first place provincial honours in the commercial property category. What a nice surprise! Leone Bagnall had urged Kris to enter Harmony House in the society's annual contest this past Spring. Thanks to Leone who was also the recipient of this year's prestigous "Shaw Award" for her long list of lifelong accomplishments. She is a tremendous inspiration and a wonderful lady all around, to say the least.
Last but not least, November and December are full of great events, Christmas performances and movies, so be sure and check back regularly for information on these shows. This Friday is Halloween and there will be a costume parade, goodies and some movies for all. Come on out and enjoy the Friday night Halloween fun!
Til next time...take good care,