Growing up in small town Newfoundland felt a lot like we were decades behind the rest of the world. I can say this from experience in that I was actually born in Toronto, Ontario. In the first 10 years of my life, we traveled to and from Newfoundland almost every year it seemed to follow the seasonal work and fulfill the need to be “back home” as much as possible. The big city of Toronto had its lure of prosperity and success, but the yearning to return home for my parents was constant. As a child going back and forth, I truly felt we would go back in time… Many homes without running water, toilets, telephones or TV’s. Most people living off the water and land, from dawn until long after dusk. As a child I thought it was heaven – the air was so clean, the ocean went to the end of the earth, the freedom to run around in fields with sheep, goats and even a herd of wild horses. It was a natural apparatus playground everywhere you looked.
The 250 million year old rock that was originally part of Northern Africa was the last province to join Canada in 1949. The vote at the time was split 51%-49% in favor of confederation. Because of that vote, we were able to travel freely back and forth in my early years, and I was able to move out west to Alberta in my adult years where I am currently raising my family. As history repeats itself, I am now bringing my teenage children back and forth to Newfoundland annually. The yearning to the rock in the middle of the North Atlantic draws you in and your heart never really leaves. To this day, my favorite place to find peace is sitting on the 250 million year old slate and gazing across the pond to what lays beyond.
Charlene F – Gemini