ANNE CROSSMAN: Wet days of August, September replaced by glorious colors of October


CENTRELEA, NS – October, really?

How can it be October? Does this “time passing silently and with incredible speed” affect anyone else? It seems those humid, sweltering days were last week or something.

My July birthday came and went with a blur and NOT the party I wanted for the second year in a row. This month joined all the others in the great gray fog of the COVID Time. It didn’t seem to matter, important things happened – they all got lumped together.

September ended in a blaze of orange. I will remember it for a long time. Thinking back to the early 1960s, I knew nothing about the Aboriginal history of Nova Scotia until a Sunday drive from the South Shore to Habitation told me a story. Maybe that’s what sparked my interest when I heard about Membertou.

I also remember the first time I went up north, to Yellowknife, and learned a whole new story (to me) about the first peoples of that part of the world. I had no idea. Nothing in my past has linked me to this part of the country and its citizens.

This month began with Treaty Day in Nova Scotia. A good time to remember that we are all treaty signatories. These documents signed all these years ago with the first inhabitants of this country are vital and they must be honored even today.

And October is my mother’s birthday month, who is gone now. She was more patient with me than I deserved, but we finally managed to understand each other. And it is the month of my dear sister-in-law’s birth that I love the most.

October is the month of 1956 when my family and I returned from overseas after three years of absence. We sailed up the St. Lawrence River to Montreal and the glorious colors on both sides of the ship were breathtaking. I saw a man cry when he saw these colors – mainly the red maple leaves welcoming their parents home.

Although it is the Christian church’s Thanksgiving month, I consider it harvest time. The last food for humans and animals is both savored and preserved for the Whiteness Time to come.

There have been deaths in recent months – too many. There were new sights to see. There were letters of wonder and condolence. There were kind thoughts sent to many from my place here. I have received many kind thoughts during this time of COVID for various milestones in my life.

But they all seem to be tangled up in a basket, like a knit that has gone wrong or an unfinished sweater or a partially made cross stitch piece. I remember the colors but the patterns may have disappeared.

This miserable time of COVID has robbed part of their sanity and there are these terrible stories of suffering from people all over the world who have fallen because of this virus.

And so, we are now in another October. Download your vaccination record to your mobile phone or print it out. It’s hard to come back again, my friends.

Anne Crossman is a former journalist and media manager. She now volunteers in her home community of Centrelea, Annapolis County.

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