Monday, August 18, 2008

My Town Monday: Killbear Provincial Park

I'm still in Canada with Child #3 and Child #4. So, more My Town Mondays from the Great White North!

We spent this past weekend in Killbear Provincial Park with a host of people. I saw people/relatives I hadn't seen in many many moons. Child #3 and Child #4 met people/relatives for the first time. Of course, the children amused and delighted everyone.

Killbear is located on a peninsula which juts out into Georgian Bay on Lake Huron. The Huron legend of Kitchikewana explains how this area was formed. Apparently, the giant, Kitchikewana, when thwarted in love, had a huge temper tantrum. (I think most of us can relate to this!) He "dug his fingers deep into the ground and threw the dirt in a fit of rage. The handfuls of dirt were scattered and the 30,000 Islands were created, and the five finger marks in the ground became the five bays: Midland Bay, Penetang Bay, Hog Bay, Sturgeon Bay, and Matchedash Bay. Kitchikewana, heartbroken and tired lay down at the base of the islands and fell asleep forever." (Yes, yes, there is a certain fatigue that goes along with heartbreak!) (

Killbear is BEAUTIFUL. I enjoyed scrambling over the Canadian Shield (Precambrian rock more than 570 million years old that coves 2/3 of Ontario ) with Child #3. Especially because it's the same rock formation I played on during childhood summers. Funny the things that tug at your heartstrings. Like ancient rocks. Canoeing and swimming and digging in the sand was also fun.

Thank you to my very fun cousin for arranging this rustic getaway. And for scaring away the black bear early one morning before he got away with more than a tub of cream cheese and a bag of apples. I'm not even joking! And to my aunt for the delicious birthday cake.

To be completely honest and whiney for a paragraph, I'm pretty happy to be back in the city. I'm done with mosquitos and tent insomnia and stumbling to unlit outdoor bathrooms at three in the morning (why did I have that last glass of wine?) and dirt in my tea and wasps in my fruit and flyaway hair. I 'm probably more a candidate for Camp Marriott! Okay. End of whine. Because hanging out with everyone was great.

In Toronto today for a very EXCITING time. It's my BIRTHDAY and I'm spending part of it with RANDOM HOUSE CANADA (signing ARCs (Advance Reader Copies) and visiting a couple of bookstores)!!! Blog post and pics to come.

Please visit Travis Erwin's blog for his My Town Monday and for links to other participants.

In breaking news--Child #3 and Child #4 and I are having so much fun that we've extended our stay in Canada! INDEFINITELY! (Just kidding about the indefinite part, DH (darling husband), Child #1 and Child #2)

Info from:!ut/p/.cmd/cs/.ce/7_0_A/.s/7_0_252/_s.7_0_A/7_0_252/_l/en?docid=004195;; Wikipedia


Linda McLaughlin said...

Wow, Barrie, you've been in Canada a long time. What a great vacation!

I loved the Killbear legend, but I'm with you on the inconveniences of camping. Ugh to the mosquitoes and dirt, etc. Camp Marriott is more my speed, too, I'm afraid.

Have fun signing your ARC's. How cool is that.


pattinase (abbott) said...

Camped once. But I can appreciate being in such a beautiful place in they'd throw up a motel.

Beth said...

Happy Birthday!
Enjoy Toronto - it's not raining. (Yet.)
And I'm so with you on the camping experience.

Clair Dickson said...

Nice post-- I love Great Lakes legends (being from the Mitten-shaped state and all.)

Barbara Martin said...

Ah, Barrie, bugs are part of camping. Had I known I would have suggested you consume bananas...mosquitos don't like their blood to have a lot of potassium in it.

While writing this comment it's been lighting and thundering outside. Hope you don't get caught in the downpour.

Glad to hear you're having such a grand time and signing ARCs. Now that's a great thing. (And when, again, does your book come out?)

laughingwolf said...

happy b'day... sounds like it was grand!

you got lucky with that bear, one mauled a gardener in her own garden in bc, not long ago... another went thru a basement window, not too far away... then there was a grizzly attack in alberta over the weekend :(

Barrie said...

laughingwolf: Glad I wasn't up on bear activity in the news!

Barbara: DECEMBER 9 , 2008 :)
Oh, and thanks for the banana tip.

Barbara and Beth: lots of rain this evening, eh?

Thank you all for the birthday wishes. Just returned from a great dinner out!!

Charles Gramlich said...

I'd love to see the Canadian shield. Just to stand on rock that old would be amazing.

debra said...

Happy belated birthday, Barrie. I hope you got to have your cake and eat it, too! And thank you for sharing your Canadian adventure.

Laura said...

I've taken 2 great Canada trips. YOu are making me long for it.
I need to go back again.

Chantal said...

What a beautiful spot. I live in Ontario and have never been there. Thanks for opening my eyes.

Anonymous said...

Happy Birthday. I hope you have a terrific day. You trip of Canada will have to end in time for your trip to OK you can go back to Canada after that. LOL. I am glad you are having such a good time. I am leaving today to go see the parents. xo


Just a Plane Ride Away said...

Happy Birthday! And what beautiful photos :-) It sounds like you are having a fabulous time... I'm not real sure that bear, though.

Sally Lawton said...

Just stopping by to say, 'Hello.' As I've not had chance to log-on for AGES!!

Sandy Levin said...

Happy Birthday, Barrie. It sounds like you are having a fabulous time in Canada.

We miss you in San Diego. Please come back soon.

Lots of love,


Travis Erwin said...

Happy Birthday. glad to hear you're till having a great time. when do you head for home?

Reb said...

Great post. I'm from Alberta, so haven't heard too many of the legends from eastern Canada. It is very beautiful there.

Happy birthday!

Beck said...

Oh! You're not very far from me, really!

Angela said...

Happy birthday.
Yes the outdoors becomes a bit too much after a few days.

Anonymous said...

Happy belated birthday, Barrie!!!

What stunning photos! I having a wonderful time 'traveling' with you. And how amazing to bring your children to the very place, the very rock, you played on as a child. It tugs at the heartstrings for sure.

And btw, "Camp Marriott" sounds wonderful to me. ;-)


Eileen said...

We were supposed to be here for 6 months. It's now been 14 years. Canada good.