It was the first snowy day of the winter… for me…. I forgot to ask Antigonishers whether they’ve had the weather before I moved here. For me, it meant a cold walk to the Farmer’s Market and back, 20 minutes each way. The Farmer’s Market takes place in a building behind the arena on James Street from May til December, and this time of year it’s COOOLLLDDD inside too! I wandered around and around, several times, before making purchases, looking for veggies and colourful mittens mostly. I found some pale pink ones for 5 bucks… which i was very thankful for on the way home when i put them inside the larger ill-fitting mittens I’ve been wearing.
new pink mitts
Some wonderful things i saw and tasted but forgot to take photos of… honey sticks, plastic tubes of honey flavoured with things like ginger and watermelon. Chocolate rum fruit cake. Blue Hubbard squash, whose skin is a funny grey blue which reminds me of Wedgwood. I’d never seen one before! the same farmer also had fiddlehead pickles in a jar… and one man was selling kale by the leaf! 33 cents each. I think it hasn’t been a very popular item til recently.
I spent my money more quickly than I’d hoped, leaving behind the organic cheese, pecan tart and jalapeno pepper jelly that I hankered for. I had to buy hot drinks twice and then leave, because it was just too frosty to stay. I felt sorry for the vendors, some of whom were not dressed for the arctic as they should have been.
Had a phone call from a friend as I walked home, and the novelty of owning a cell phone continues to frustrate and delight me. I turned the volume down inadvertently, was interrupted by passing traffic, and froze my fingers trying to handle the thing in the icy wind. but it was worth it to be able to walk and talk.
Not that I haven’t been walking and talking. Just, walking by myself and humming, and talking maybe not as much as I would back in Dartmouth, where I knew more people. I like that I have to walk to get anywhere. The novelty of THAT might wear off but it’s been good for me so far, and makes coming home to my lovely apartment a treat!
Speaking of which, Kathi brought me here with every bit of the stuff I hoped would go with me. I was proud of her for fitting it all in. We drove and unloaded everything, and took stock of the place. I love the kitchen, modern and clean with a washer and dryer in it. The living room is a place I’ll rarely go but somewhere to put up art,the bedroom also, but the study, which is really a second bedroom, lets in the morning sun and is my favourite room in the place. We moved the book case in there and it houses all my home office stuff, and the closet is full of my boxes. Kathi convinced me the bed should not remain in what is the living room, and I am glad I have a bedroom with a door instead of an opening onto the kitchen.
We went to Main Street’s Chinese restaurant which has the romantic name of Moonlight Cafe I believe and had yummy almond guy ding and tofu with veggies. Yum. and parking in the downtown is free until January, which is convenient and hospitable. The next day we ran around to shop for things like road salt, aluminum stove burner liners. and a flashlight, as well as a load of groceries. We tired ourselves out really well, but came home and Kathi made a wonderful salad and I boiled up a ham and made pea soup. We puttered and unpacked. Kathi LOVES organizing and decorating. I see the appeal but am glad it’s not an everyday occurrence.
Kathi left Thursday and I missed her right away but had lots to do unpacking and organizing.Friday I made a lot of phone calls and went out in the afternoon to talk to Jeff at the Lyghtsome Gallery about my poetry books. He has produced some lovely books himself for poet Anne Simpson and artist and writer Linda Johns, both Antigonish residents. Perhaps my next little chapbook will get the Lyghtsome treatment!
Tomorrow I don’t know… the library and the Tall and Small Cafe will be closed… I called the library and the lady there thought perhaps McDonald’s was the only free wifi hotspot open on a Sunday! And there is no post office in any pharmacy downtown…so none open on a SUndasy that I can figure out. It is rather refreshing that things are not open, but for someone like me who doesn’t really know many people here, it might be tricky to amuse myself! But I am going to try the university… I don’t imagine it will be totally closed… even though the last of exams was, I think, today… I count my blessings that it wasn’t me, writing them. That I’m writing this blog instead. and tomorrow, maybe the novel? Brrr, I’m already shaking.
Anna Syperek’s image of Main Street Antigonish