Day: April 12, 2014

Ramblin’ Roads

I just had the most wonderful day today … and I didn’t have one iota of all of the treasures it was going to deliver! I headed out early this morning for a fair meeting in Madoc. I got there in good time … learned a few things … and headed home. That was when the adventures began.
Ramblin' Roads01I had my trusty camera with me – as is usually the case! – because I always find places or things that make such great shots. Like this home – located right across the street from the public library in Madoc. It looks like the country homestead it might have been a hundred years ago – only now a small town has grown right up to its doorstep. I love the look of old homes. Check out the shingles and peak of the central hall upstairs … This home has received a lot of loving care!
Ramblin' Roads02Just leaving Madoc, on St. Lawrence Street, you come across this amazing restored barn.
Ramblin' Roads03I believe it is now the home of a massage and laser therapy service. What a beautiful job they’ve done with this. The home on the adjacent lot is lovely too.
Ramblin' Roads04I headed out of Madoc and was enjoying a drive along Highway 7 when I came across a place that always tugs at my heart strings … YEARS AGO when I was a kid my family lived in Ottawa. We would travel Highway 7 often to tag up with family – sometimes meeting halfway between Ottawa and Peterborough for picnics with my Aunt Jean and Uncle John. One place I will always remember stopping at is ‘Lester B. Pearson Peace Park’. There is a pagoda there that was donated by the Japanese people as a symbol of the friendship between east and west after the wars. There was also a memorial there commemorating the sacrifices of mothers for the war efforts. I remember running the trails and enjoying the river … the Black River.
Ramblin' Roads11I’m giving credit to my dad for today’s adventures. (For those of you who knew my dad, that is a real feat on his part – but not impossible – he has been ‘gone’ for almost six years now … ) When he and I would do road trips we’d often pull off the road to check out the wood scultpures which had shown up beside the Peace Park. Dad loved to whittle away at wood and would make some pretty interesting carvings from old trees that he found. He loved to check out what going on here. There are many examples of hollowed out trees that had been shaped into faces, hands and animal characters. We never had the opportunity to be there when the owners were about. I haven’t stopped there since I traveled with him. Today I saw there was a ‘shop’ and it seemed to be open. It’s called the Black River Trading Company. Check out their website!
Ramblin' Roads13Oh my goodness! So beautiful – the smell of the wood, the oils, the polish… And as I wandered around I could hear Dad in my head – commenting on this piece or that one.
Ramblin' Roads12I think he would have loved this table (I grabbed pictures off of their website) as I was too shy to take any with my camera. You shouldn’t really take pictures of someone else’s artwork … should you? This table has a pond sculpted into it – with fish and plants and rocks … The owners are amazing people – so generous and welcoming to guests. If you are driving along Highway 7 near Tweed – make time to stop there. It is magical.
Ramblin' Roads10I was enchanted with the benches they had – all so well worn and so well suited to becoming a donkey woods ‘human perch’… well – except for the part where the donkeys would eat it! 😉 As I was sharing my admiration for all of the work with the owners we somehow got talking about donkeys…. go figure! 😉 ‘Oh,’ they explained, ‘you need to take just a little more time today and drive by ‘The Green Donkey Tea Room‘!’ Funny thing is – when they mentioned that,  I knew exactly what they meant… I’d met them in the blogosphere! They have a tea room business for part of the year – and donkeys! I had filed that away in my noggin’ under ‘visit when you are retired’ – and here I am – RETIRED! 😉
Ramblin' Roads201Last year when I was researching everywhere for ideas on how to house donkeys I came across a blog post about this amazing place. And the amazing thing is that I remembered it AND what it looked like!  I had this very picture above in my head. So of course I hopped into the car and searched them out! They were just ‘around the corner’ (country style).
Ramblin' Roads05When I pulled up alongside their field I was greeted by this old fella – whom I think is called ‘Lucky’. Lucky has four other pals to hang out with in a beautiful barnyard on a nice quiet country road.
Ramblin' Roads08The rest of the herd are all donkeys that look remarkably like our Rosie… just bigger! Before I knew it I was out of the car and greeting them at their fence line. As is the way with happy donkeys they were all curious and wanting to say hello.
Ramblin' Roads07Then I realized … I wouldn’t want anyone just pulling up and hanging out with our herd… ‘ so heart in hand I decided to knock on their door to say hello. Never done that before! And what did I find – but a kindred spirit in Elsie – human mother of the Black River Farm herd. We had a wonderful visit. I got to ask her all kinds of questions about how she cares for her animals. She gave me a tour of her barn and we spent a long time talking to the donkeys and providing hugs and scratches. I really AM a donkey person!
Ramblin' Roads09I was very aware that I had just ‘dropped in out of the blue’ on them – AND that Edie was waiting here at home – so I peeled myself away with promises of returning for a visit – AND hosting them for one here too. I LOVE where we live – and the people that we are surrounded by. Thanks Dad! (You see – stopping to see the donkeys – and walking on up to knock on the door and say hello is exactly the kind of thing Dad and I would get into when we hit the roads for an afternoon tour!)