One step closer, maybe?

Image from

Without a doubt, this day has been a mixed bag. So I was needful of some good news, and I got it: I’ll be a volunteer for this fall’s Celtic Colours festival in Cape Breton.

I’m more hyped up about this than I can tell you. I attended the 2012 Celtic Colours last fall, chronicled it here, and had one of the greatest experiences of my life. Wasn’t that a time, as they say. I knew then that I want somehow to be part of this. And it looks like I will be. So far I’m signed on to help at gigs in Port Hawkesbury and Wagmatcook, with more possibly to come.

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Maybe this is, or maybe this isn’t, one big step closer to my goal. Feels like it could be. We shall see what we shall see. But, no matter, I get to be a part of Celtic Colours.

Rockin’ the 902: The epilogue

I’m back. After 24+ hours of sleeplessness, a day spent stranded at LaGuardia, and a manic return trip, I’m back. Five hours’ sleep and back to the office. I’ve quoted Tyler Tervooren previously when he said: “I’ve never come home from a trip feeling anything less than a better, stronger person.” If by better and stronger he means “punchy and addlepated,” I’m in.

2016 is a long way off. I’ll be sixty years old. My adorable great niece Abby will be eight years old. So will my car. Brazil will host the summer Olympics. We’ll have a Presidential election when Obama’s second term ends.

And I’m not going to belabor this or write about it every single day (or even every week). Not going to bore you with all the excruciating details. But I have set a goal for myself:

By the end of 2016, I will live in Cape Breton.

Stay tuned. I believe it’s gonna be a wild ride.

I am here. Rockin’ the 902.

Image from me

As the young kids say.

To quote Tyler Tervooren:  “I’ve never come home from a trip feeling anything less than a better, stronger person.”

Long day. Dead tired. More tomorrow.

I may have just found my calling in life.

Image from wikipedia

From Wikipedia:

Smoke’s Poutinerie is a Canadian nation-wide poutine franchise, founded by entrepreneur Ryan Smolkin. It is the first poutine-exclusive restaurant in Toronto.

Founded in Toronto in 2008, the restaurant is named after owner Smolkin. He was inspired by Montreal restaurant La Banquise, which serves many different kinds of poutine and is open 24 hours. Smolkin frequents La Banquise whenever he visits Montreal.

The restaurant offers over 22 different kinds of poutine and has locations in Toronto, London, Guelph, Winnipeg, Ottawa, Mont-Tremblant, Halifax, Montreal, and St. John’s; and new franchises in the works in Hamilton, Waterloo, Kingston, Edmonton, Vancouver, and Whistler.

From their website:

I’m going back to Cape Breton, Nova Scotia this fall.

image from

I don’t know how yet, but I’m going. A huge leap of faith. I spent most of September 2010 there and wrote about it here. It’s trite and clichéd to say a place grabs hold of your imagination, like when Tony Bennett left his heart in San Francisco, but that’s what happened.

Pic from me


Nowhere in Nova Scotia are you more than 35 miles (56 kM) from the ocean. It’s almost entirely around you, the scent of salt and brine is everywhere. It’s impossible to describe to a Minnesotan how exhilarating that is. It’s nothing like a freshwater lake.You will never see as many lighthouses in a row as you will when you drive the Lighthouse Route along the south shore.

photo from me

pic from me

There are mountains in any direction on Cape Breton; you are generally closer to a mountain than you are to the ocean. And along the Cabot Trail you will find some of the most beautiful mountains in the world. It kind of sucks living in a place without mountains.

pic from me

me again

This was the view out my motel window

And the people are the nicest, kindest, funniest, most welcoming people I’ve ever met. We in Minnesota brag about being “Minnesota Nice,” but Nova Scotians leave us in the dust. Especially Capers. We’re like a bunch of skeevy New Yorkers compared to them.

Did I mention seafood?

Did I mention music?

Did I mention whales?

yup, me again


So I’m going back. Haven’t figured out how yet, but it’s gonna happen. Call it a vision quest.