Monday, August 21, 2006

Hicksville, BC

When I moved to BC I learned that all places are not equal. If you live in Errington or Coombs you are considered a bit of a rednack. I you live in Whiskey Creek you are often suspected of being a pot head. Well, I just came home from a weekend trip to Lasqueti Island. (pronounced Laskeetee) It is a 45 minute ferry ride to this beautiful, quiet little Island. The ferry is a walk-on only. People on Lasqueti have cars, but they are kept on the Isand and are originally brought there by barge. If you live on the Island you normally keep a car on the main Island to use for things like shopping and just normal life. If you have kids in school, there is a school (kind of) where you can send them until they reach grade 9. At that time they have to have a place to stay in either Qualicum or Parksville for the week and then home to Lasqueti for the weekend since none of the parents want to continue with home-schooling through high-school. They have no electricity on Lasqueti so each family has a generator which they use sparingly. Usually 3 hours a day to keep the refrigerator cool and summer only. Most families still use lanterns for lights unless they have guests, then they run the generator and use electic lights. They don't use toasters, microwaves, coffee makers, or any appliances that have elements since they put too much strain on the generators. The people we stayed with did have an automatic washer, but she said that many of the oldies still wash with a wringer-washer and there is not an electric dryer on the Island. They have gas stoves and water heaters and their animals roam all over the Island, except for milking cows and laying hens. If you want fresh meat you go out and shoot a sheep or if you're desperate you can shoot a mountain goat. Nobody waits for hunting season or bothers with a fishing liscence. If you need food you either go out and shoot it or gather it or wait until someone is making a shopping trip to the main Island and the neither send a list or tag along. Most of them have their own boats, but will only use them for a shopping trip if the water isn't rough.
We were invited to Lasqueti for a camping weekend which was set up by one of the foster families I met at my bi-weekly support meetings. Their family owns the "resort" on Lasqueti Island. They have a large building that has a kitchen, 5 bedrooms, a large common room, and a huge swimming pool as well as their own homes. This "resort" is only open to invited guests during the summer because it is used as the school from Sept to June. It is set in a small cove with its own beach that they use to teach science as well as for recreation. Even the 4 year old goes snorkling and learns all about the underwater world. They use the pool for phys-ed and the kitchen for cooking class. They even have a computer lab with 4 very top of the line computers. The generator is turned on when they need to use the computers. Thankfully they have telephones so they have access to the internet, but talk about parental controls. The generator is locked in a shed and the parents have the keys. They did have indoor plumbing, but asked that we use the outside toilets if possible since it takes electricity to run the sewer pumps and costs about $600 to have the tanks emptied.
I felt like I stepped beck in time. In some ways it reminded me of when we first moved to the farm. We had no electricity for the first few months we lived there, either. We stored our milk, cream, butter and other "fridge" food in a tub which was hung down a well, I think I remember correctly. We used lanterns and everyone stayed in the room where the light was.
Anyway, I had a great time and when on Lasqueti you can't help but be relaxed. Now we are back home and back to the worries of the world. Life like the people on Lasqueti have seems very far away.
I am going to have a very busy week. My friends, Chris and Rueben Peters from Calgary are here on holiday so I want to spend some time with them. My girls grandparents are visiting them from Yellowknife, so I will have to arrange times with them and I just got offered money from the ministry to take the girls to Saskatchewan for a week at the end of this month so I am trying to figure out if I can find a vehicle that is more reliable than my car and if I can't do I dare take my car and trust that God can get us there and back safely. If we go then we would leave on the 25th 0r 26th and would have to be back by the 4th of Sept. The girls need to go to Regina, since that is where their family is and I, of course, want to go to Saskatoon since that is where my family and friends are and sometime between now and the 4th of Sept I have to buy school supplies and get all of us ready for school.
Aaaahhhh!!!!! I want to go back to a Laqueti kind of life-style!

16 comments:

footsack said...

So that's where you were all weekend. I wondered. Sounds like a fun time.

Melanie said...

It's funny how all the crap we worry about filling our life with can sometimes just become stuff you have to worry about. Why is it that poor people are generally happier than rich? I've seen it everywhere I've travelled, and never heard a poor person say, "I wish I had a new car, or a car at all..." Only people with stuff say that...lol, don't call me on it though, I don't want to give up my car. What a funny people we are.

Melanie said...

It's funny how all the crap we worry about filling our life with can sometimes just become stuff you have to worry about. Why is it that poor people are generally happier than rich? I've seen it everywhere I've travelled, and never heard a poor person say, "I wish I had a new car, or a car at all..." Only people with stuff say that...lol, don't call me on it though, I don't want to give up my car. What a funny people we are.

Carol said...

Wow, that sounds amazing. I would have never thought in this day and age that there were still people who lived their lives like that. I have always had the "amenities" and I am not too sure how it would be to live life without them.

Avaelyn said...

Oh, that sounds neat! One of these times I want to go to Lasqueti to see what it's like, it sounds so neat. Get away from the world. Glad you had fun!!

RoByNAdRiAn said...

i love electricity

the trav said...

i remember two winters ago i went amanda and myself went on a leadership retreat to the hermitage at shekinah... it was awesome... everything that was supposed to stay cold stayed outside... everything that was supposed to stay warm stayed inside... no power, no running water, we heated the place with a wood stove, we cooked on the wood stove, we did dishes in a basin in water that we brought with us from home and heated on the wood stove... we had lanterns and flashlights for light... it was really cool... i actually quite enjoyed it... makes you wonder what it would have been like when grandpa built his and grandmas first house, eh?
neat pete

Anonymous said...

If I would have known that some of you would come for a visit if we came out there I sure would have come sooner. Maybe it's something that will catch on. Let me know if you are coming a.s.a.p. so that we don't make plans go away while you are here. If you come you could actullay meet all the babies out here. Not that they would remember but thier parents and grandparents would sure like to see you. As would your parents.
Praying that you find a good vehicle.
sue

Becky said...

Can you swing by Yorkton when you go to Regina? Huh? Huh?

Margaret said...

Sue,
I am taking my own vehicle, or rather the vehicle I gave to God, if we come. I figure He can keep us safe in a '92 olds as He could in a brand new mini-van. I am hoping to hear today if the ministry will give us the money. I would so love to meet all the babies and especially see their parents and grandparents.

Becky,
My girls are actually going to Assinaboia, not Regina and I am going to see if their relatives can come get them from Saskatoon. If they can't then I will have to bring them. How close is that to Yorkton?

Carol said...

I hope you have a wonderful trip going to SK. I wish I was going with you. There are quite a few people I would love to see who I haven't seen in a while.

bAsh said...

I kinda know how you feel to a certain extent. Costa Rica wasn't as extreme as the no electricity but the life style was a slower pace and just lovely and then you come back to north america and it's like AHHHH...i want it all back. I'm so glad that you enjoyed your time. It sounds so lovely just to relax and be stress free. I will be praying for you as you seem to have a busy month :)
God bless

Abe&Maggie said...

Hey there Margaret,
When you talked about this camp you were at it reminded me of the way we lived in Prespatou. Those are still very fond memories for us and our children. Great to hear that you had a good time there.
So how far away do you live from Art , David, and Mitz? Talk to you soon!

Carol said...

Abe and Margaret,

Margaret is in Qualicum Beach which is about 10 mins away from Parksville, which is where Art and I are living. Mitz and Ken are close too Coombs and about a 10 -15 minute drive for us.

Abe&Maggie said...

Hey Carol,
So you really are not that far from each other, thats nice. And now you have a sister living out there as well, WOW! you have a lot of family. So how far is your sister from where you live?ttyl
Abe & Margaret

Avaelyn said...

I live about 5 blocks from Auntie Margaret! But we don't go see her as often as we should. Maybe I'll have to. :)