This blog is about our travels in our solar powered "Airstream" and living off grid, in our passive solar home, near Bancroft, Ontario, Canada.

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Thursday, 2 June 2011


Maintenance, it's what we do on what we own, to maintain it in best condition. Farady township, in which we live, does the same thing. Since we've returned on April 19th I've see the graders out three times grading Bay Lake Road. This is wonderful, as the spring thaw is very hard on the roads here and ruts and potholes must be quickly repaired.

This is what the road looks like after the grader's first pass. The blade takes off the top layer, moves it across the road to fill in the ruts and holes and leaves a mound in the middle of the road.

The grader is just coming over the hill. This pass will complete the work on the other side of the road, filling in the ruts and holes as he smooths out the mound of dirt.

This scene caught me by surprise. It was 31*C outside and I spotted these mounds of snow in Frydeman's lumber yard on Bay Lake Road. This was May 31st, the hottest day we've had so far. The snow in Bancroft disappeared weeks ago. Why was this snow still here?
If you click on the picture above you will see white, among all the dirt, that's snow. My only explanation is the dirt and gravel that covers the snow is acting as an insulation layer, much like you wearing a coat in the winter.

Old timers up here used to go out in the winter and cut blocks of ice from the lakes. The ice was stacked in "ice huts", each block covered with sawdust as it went in and that was their refrigerator. Food would last for months, no electricity, just good old fashioned pioneer ingenuity.   WOW, refrigeration without electricity.

 That was before my time, but I do remember as a kid, getting bushel baskets of fresh killed chickens from the chicken plant beside IKO, taking the baskets to the CPR station and loading them on a refrigeration train car and the only way to keep the meat from going bad was ice. Every basket was buried in ice as it went into the car.

That was a long time ago, when Tom and I rode in the back of the CPR truck in the summer as he made his deliveries around Brampton.  We probably weren't any older than 10. You can't do that today, boys.

Happy Birthday Annabelle. Hope you enjoy many more.

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