Monday, November 5, 2012

Prince Rupert and the Gumboot Girls and some local jazz

I talk with my younger brother at least twice a week.   Mostly football, family, weather, politics....just sundry stuff.  He moved to Washington state some twenty years ago, near the Canadian border.  He likes it.  It suits him.
Brother John
Fifteen years ago he ran into a short Canadian woman, they fell in love and got married....etc etc etc.  The two of them make a strange looking pair.... he is about 6'8" and Linda is maybe 5'2"
They have a cozy place out in the country... he raises the chickens and tends the fruit trees...Linda does the plumbing and canning and freezing of stuff.  He works at an Athletic Complex managing the fields.  Linda is a field biologist for an International fishing commission.  They get along well.

But the real deal here, see, is Linda and the book Gumboot Girls.  Back in the 70's She moved from Saskatchewan.  To Northern British Columbia and met a whole bunch of women who worked the fish canneries, the lumber mills and what not.

Well.... yadda yadda....the women, through the miracle of the internet, have composed a book of their stories and reminiscences of those times.  I talked with Linda this morning.  On Thursday she is flying into Port Rupert, BC to visit with the women she knew then.  I am really excited for her.  Sounds like great fun.  I know John will call more when she is gone. He does miss her when her work or travels keeps her from home.  He calls me when he gets lonely for her.  Some quotes....

"We hiked into town every two weeks for supplies, mail, showers and beer. On more than one occasion as we headed out we saw a vehicle stranded on the beach, with no tire marks around it. It was usually a rental vehicle some unwitting tourists had been forced to abandon by the rising tide." -Margo Elfert

"The first part of our paddle/sail down the east coast of Graham Island, favoured by westerlies, was idyllic. When we ran out of freshwater one day and landed, walking up to the first house we saw, we noticed a dulcimer hanging from the wall. When the owner learned that we had a dulcimer in our kayak, he invited us to stay." -Lyn Pinkerton

We lived by a different time down there. Days of the week meant nothing, but seasons were all-important. We had no electricity, therefore not a lot of light other than daylight. Every hour of light was used to its fullest, even in the summer, a high energy time when we only got three or four hours of darkness." -Su-San Brown

So that is an unabashed plug for the book.... I told John and Linda I want a copy for Christmas...

 ohohoh... adn speaking of plugs....  local magazine ran a nice article about the jazz artists in Town.  I didn't think we had such a good group of artists laying good jazz... I need to go out more often

 READ story here

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