Home is ALWAYS home!
Each year my family and I spend July at “home” with our family and friends who remain in the area or return as well for a visit. It is a true vacation we look forward to each and every year. I am proud to say, my children would love an "opportunity" to move there and raise their own families some day.
Some day ...
Lately, however, I read such desolate news stories for the CBC, the Globe and Mail, Chronicle Herald, amongst others, about the area, using the words like "dying" and "out of options". How can this be? Do we not all have a responsibility for our neighbours? Doesn't success of one, mean the success for all?
All around the community are success stories of small towns recovering, building, restoring, and benefiting from the multitude of tourists who come to Nova Scotia each year. Yet, despite the beauty of Marine Drive and the need for many of these tourists to “pass through” Mulgrave on the way to somewhere else, no one is stepping up to provide even options.
Still, each year I return home and as my children age, I get SO excited about the “potential” of the area.
I witness year over year key residents who continue to work tirelessly to promote and engage the residents and visitors alike. Because of this, I don’t feel the answers to the ultimate success of Mulgrave will come from the adjacent counties or the province, for that matter. I think the ultimate success of Mulgrave will come from the residents, and those former residents who continue to come home year over year. With a little help, Mulgrave could capitalize on the existing media attention and grow from within—attract developers with resources to spend on a revitalization to enable Mulgrave to re-establish a school, businesses, and eventually population.
There are so many examples of towns coming back from the brink and becoming so much stronger than they ever were previously, that I can see no other outcome from Mulgrave. Surrounded as they are by communities who have reached success, to remain stagnant will concede defeat. To try something—anything, will cost minimal money, maximum human effort, and provide dividends for a legacy which will be felt for the generations to come.
submission by: Mack Power
The city of meaningless purpose
Standing on the backs of the unfortunate
In the heart of our machine--the epitome of our society
A palace of empty prices
The Cathedral of consumerism
Which one is your weakness?
Temptation will be the seed of your obsession
Don't be blinded by the shine of your "want"
It turns into the abyss of false "need"
Kings of old kingdoms
Now the high priests
In the church of more
The slaves are called "employees"
Chained by desire
You wil find no true quality
In the sea of mass production
Love has been replaced with pleasure
Care has been swapped for a false smile
Wellbeing for work ethic
Happiness for the pursuit
The eternal sunshine radiating contentment
Across the bluest of skies
Traded for the dank malnourishing florescent light
Racing away from death
Without slowing down to see what was really worth living for
When confined to a box ALL connection is lost
Falling into the emptiness
As a tear of broker down love
Falls gently down the cheek of Mother Nature.
A question I'm sure asked by author's everywhere and likely more than a few readers.
Sometimes the answer come from the most commonplace occurrences.
While on vacation to our usual destination, my youngest son met up with a friend he "hangs" out with annually as her family typically attends the same location during the same time of year. We are such creatures of habit, aren't we?
They're getting a little older and in the in-between stage, wanting to be at times both grown up and child. This year, he decided he would like to take her to dinner "all on his own". And we're not talking the local fast-food joint or the mall. He means a serious, have to make a reservation, restaurant.
Without coaching, he awkwardly asks her father if this will be okay.
That out of the way, he picks a day and requests his father make the reservation as he doesn't think the people at the desk will take him seriously.
This kid has put a lot of thought into the evening. Now what started as a shrug and a lark has us interested. We're curious to see how it all plays out. Hubby arranges for us to have a table close by, but not too close.
My son will dress up, but needs to keep it casual. And not wanting to break the "friend" barrier, they arrange to meet at the restaurant.
Once seated, we watch from a distance as they laugh together, eat the various courses, having no idea they are the superstars of the establishment with every waitstaff member making an excuse to service their table. Oh, no, they have no notion of the celebrity status they gained that evening. Hands animated, faces flushed with enthusiasm for their topic, engaged with each other's opinions and conversation. While other's in the restaurant continuously look at their phones, stare at the ceiling, monitor the passing and going of people, eat the food with the vigour of boredom, these two were fully committed to their time together.
Was it that they knew they only got to see each other once a year? Or was it the removal of the stigma of "date"? Whatever the magic, from a spectator's point of view, they were ageless--not young or old--and they impressed on me the very heart of romance is not lust, or clothing, or music, nor the location, but the essence of being who you are with the person who makes you the most comfortable.
The comfort ended though when the bill came...still too young to understand, he had no idea what to do for a tip. A huge relief when we were there to take care of on the part of both my son ... and the waiter for my son had proposed a $1.60 tip!!
Early review praise for Book Two in the "Gentle Surf" series
Reviewed By Kayti Nika Raet for Readers’ Favorite
"From the Front Desk by Lori Power is the second book in the Gentle Surf series of contemporary romance novels. It is the perfect novel for readers who are looking for a sweet generational romance saga. Wendee and Toby are two wounded people who both came to the island of Coronado, searching for peace and healing within themselves after a rocky past. A serendipitous encounter on the beach has them soon finding that in each other.
First and foremost a romance, From the Front Desk by Lori Power also has elements of mystery and a potential ghost story, but at its core From the Front Desk is about people learning to embrace the future and the unknown once more. Powers creates a sweet romance with a slow build up leading to flirty moments and passionate encounters. I found myself really enjoying as well how Powers set up the island almost as if it were a third character we would love to visit again.
From the Front Desk is perfect for those looking to move away from dark, angst ridden romance and are looking for something lighter that warms the heart. It is especially good for readers hoping to close the book with the happily ever after they crave. This is a simple romance which will leave you rooting for this heartwarming pair and attracted to the genuine charm of the island and its inhabitants. A quick read, From the Front Desk by Lori Powers is a story of attraction, trust, and passion."
A little background:
For fans of the movie "Jaws", we're all familiar with the scene of Quint in the boat with the Chief and Mr. Hooper before the big finale with the shark.
This is a parody for Todd, always a fan of the movies!
Quint: “Little beige row boat slammed into the beach in front of the Power cabin during the great flood of ’17, Chief. It was coming from the other side of the lake, just beyond the narrows, after the storm. The thunder storm.
One tall man went into the water. One tall man came back for the lifejacket and swimmer shoes.
Vessel came aground in twelve minutes.
Didn’t see the algae for about the first half an hour. Green. Sticky stuff. You know, you know that when you’re in the water, Chief? You tell by lookin’ in the water and then at your clothes. Well, we didn’t know. ‘Cause our storm had been so secret, didn’t even make the weather channel. Huh, huh. Local news didn’t even list the rain accumulation for a week.
Early evening, right, Chief. The stink blows. So that tall man formed himself into his swimming gear, cruisin’ in his life vest. Still kept his tee-shirt on. You know it’s…kinda like ‘ol vendetta, like I gotta get rid of this stinking row boat. It’s not ours. And the idea was, the algae’ll just wash off. So he starts hollerin’ and screamin’ and sometimes with a good washcloth, the algae would go away. Sometimes, in the crack of his bum, it wouldn’t go away. Sometimes, that algae, it just sticks. Gets right into your eyes.
You know the thing about that row boat…it don’t care about the algae. When it comes back onto the beach, it just sits there, bobbing in the waves. Seems to be a livin’ thing. Until you gotta get back into the water, with the green algae. No blue blooms.
And then, ah then, you hear the moans and groans and the lake turns green in spite of all those good intentions.
Y’know by the end of that first day, even when pushed out to the centre of the lake, the little rowboat came back. I don’t know how many times the tall man cleaned, maybe once. I don’t know about the little groves and cracks, algae gets everywhere.
By the next weekend, Chief, the rowboat bobbed over the reeds. The ones lining the front of the beach. Tall stuff, brown with fluff, healthy. They keep the beach clear. I thought they were great. The damn things cut! Reached over to grab one to steady myself and sliced my palm.
Noon the next weekend, Mr. Hooper, that beige little bastard of a rowboat was back again. I swear to God, if I gotta get back in that lake to drag the fucker out. I need an anchor. Water level had gone done, and managed to get the last pieces of the dock in. Everyone says they hadn’t seen a storm like that in the last twenty years. I called bull-shit to that, Mr. Hooper. Anyway the storm came and the storm went. Thunder boomed and lightening lit the sky.
And by the next day, that little beige rowboat had been picked up by a passing boater. You know that time when you wonder, do they own it or are they just stealing the damned thing. An opportunity like. That was the time I was most frightened. Waiting to see if they would just bring it back.
I’ll never swim with algae again.
So, one tall man gets into the lake. All to take one small rowboat back out to the middle, so anyone could have taken ‘er, August 2017. Anyway, that was the storm.
Farewell and adieu to you fair Spanish ladies. Farewell and adieu to you ladies of Spain.”
As I prepare birthday cards for the coming month I am pondering the recipients ability to read my note. I include a hand-written message in each. That's just my thing. But as I completed the task, I thought of my children and what really seems like a lost of art of handwriting, or how they term it - cursive script.
My youngest will be going into Junior High as my oldest completes High School. Both rely heavily on their computer and other IT equipment for completing their school tasks. Though we have surely put "pen to paper" in this house, the modern protocol for getting the job done IN The SCHOOL SYSTEM is via electronics. In that my oldest can read "cursive" marginally, while my youngest, not at all.
Have we done them any favours?
I don't think so.
Don't get me wrong, they can both read and write-well. Printing and understanding each of their letters. But writing is faster than both printing or typing. Added to this is the beauty of the flow of the letters and words on the page as an art in itself.
Will these future generations look at our historical documents, all hand written, and treat them like Egyptian Hieroglyphs?
I don't know, really. Just because it's easier to teach kids printing only and concern ourselves with typing as the modern form of written communication, I can't help but mourn the loss and lament another basic skill gone.
Book Two in the "Under Suspicion" series.
Reviewed By Deborah Lloyd for Readers’ Favorite
"Interesting characters, romantic interludes and action-filled scenes. The interweaving of the personal and professional lives of Lorna and Mitchell demonstrates the adept writing skills of the author. Although many characters are involved in the story, it is easy to grasp the personality of each one. Author Lori Power gives just enough information about Lorna and Mitchell’s first adventure to entice the reader to want to read the first book of the series, if s/he has not already done so. Additionally, at the end of the book, she includes the first chapter of Book Three. It will be interesting to see what adventures this couple encounters next!"
Reviewed By Lisa McCombs for Readers’ Favorite
"A fast-paced, incredibly suspenseful continuation of Lori Power’s thrilling tale that grips the reader instantly. Packed full of the twists and turns of a true crime novel, the story includes just enough steamy romance and intoxicating scandal to force the reader to keep turning pages. Convincing dialogue propels the story line to the ranks of a great read and leaves this reviewer anxiously awaiting Book Three."
Reviewed By Patricia Reding for Readers’ Favorite
"Lori Power delivers an engaging story in The Tables Have Turned. Her characters--including the secondary players--are well developed, and the manner in which she portrays the relationships between them all is top notch. She has excellently captured the pain of a formerly abused person, the power of a man of honor, the anxiety of a would-be Mayor's wife who guards a potentially destructive secret, and the true evil and sliminess of a villain. Further, Lori Power has captured the manner in which people process information internally, trying to work themselves to a goal. I found the circumstances of the story believable, the dialogue real, and the ultimate outcome delivered at just the right time. For lovers of mysteries, Lori Power delivers a bang in The Tables Have Turned."
Book One in the "Gentle Surf", "Sea Breeze" has opened to rave reviews.
Jack Magnus for Readers’ Favorite
“A marvelous blend of mixed messages and tangled identities as two star-crossed lovers fall in love despite their families' histories of cut-throat competition in the banking world…This beautifully written story is filled with strains of soft jazz singing mingling with luscious images of warm Southern California evenings on the beach and the island charms of Trinidad where Elleah's mother was born and she comes to heal. Sea Breeze is a sweet romance, with two marvelous main characters, that feels like one for the ages; it's that good. Sea Breeze: The Gentle Surf Series, Book 1 is most highly recommended.”
Patricia Day for Readers’ Favorite
“Lori Powers has written a beautiful story, drawing the reader into the world of wealth, greed, power and love. The lives of Elleah, Reginald, Catherine and Andrew will never be the same again, and they each travel a rocky road trying to gain independence from parental expectations. It is an awesome story. Beautifully written, with very credible characters. Loved the story and the outcome. Highly recommended reading.”
Sefina Hawke for Readers’ Favorite
“A unique romance that reminded me a bit of a more modern Romeo and Juliet with how Elleah and Reginald are both from rival banking families. I found Sea Breeze to be much more enjoyable than Romeo and Juliet, though, as it truly sets itself apart from other romances by keeping the rival nature of the two families a secret from Reginald. I found it interesting that Elleah took on a different name so that she could be a singer at the Hotel Del Coronado. Elleah was my favorite character because I felt like I could understand her the most, and I sympathized with her indecision in regards to Reginald. I look forward to reading the second book in the Gentle Surf series!”
Lisa McCombs for Readers’ Favorite
“A delightful, light-hearted romance that will assuredly fill the reader with only good thoughts. As a romance, I find Power’s novel a welcome escape from popular promiscuity that often leaves the reader with conflicting emotions. Sea Breeze is the perfect story for a beach read or weekend escape. There are no compromising sexual or suggestive passages, making this an easy and relaxed read. I enjoyed the story very much.”
Samantha Dewitt (Rivera) for Readers’ Favorite
“It’s an interesting story and it’s really unique at the same time. The idea of a young woman who wants to leave behind everything that has hurt her and create a life for herself is a strong one. It’s something that anyone can relate to. Even more, there’s a strong male character to back it all up. I was impressed and would love to read more about these characters. I’ll be looking at books from this series too, because it really seems like a great background. Sea Breeze is a book that I’m going to remember and it’s one that I’ll read again.”
Arthur followed her and then paused briefly on the threshold, pulled her tight against him, and kissed her brow. Then his heavy step echoed down the corridor.
She watched him depart. Elleah lingered, one foot in the hallway, hand on the door, and waited. He didn’t look back. Once he had taken the turn to the stairwell, with a heavy heart, she turned back to her hotel room.
Mid-stride, she stopped, surprise making her gasp.
Across the hall, another door stood open. Just inside the doorway, a tall man with heavy brows and a stern chin stared with open curiosity. Thick hair, bed tousled, made her wonder if he’d just woken up. His forearm braced against the jamb while he raised a glass with amber liquid to his mouth. Lips upturned in a casual smirk, he sipped. Over the crystal brim, his daring gaze coldly travelled the length of her flowered silk robe in frank appraisal.
Without confirming the robe had indeed fallen open to drape loosely across her breasts, Elleah turned on her heel and closed her door with a decisive click.
There is young love in our house.
The sweet sincerity of romance and romantic thought.
In this day in age of mass media and social engagement, I have been reminded of the value of the hand written letter.
Without giving too much away and getting into trouble for telling tales out of school, this lovely couple do all of the things young couples are expected to do...they talk on the phone, they use their social media connections, they share and facetime, and spend time together..but then they also write letters. I'm talking hard copy, old-fashioned, put a stamp on it, and go to the mail box letters.
This practice first caught my attention a few months ago and I shrugged it off as a passing fancy. BUT NO, These letters are a part of their relationship. Almost weekly, a letter is sent and a letter is received. The envelop is treasured for its postmark and the fact that its contents are hand written-no computer print out pages.
Of course I am not privy to the contents, but I can tell by the dreamy look in the eye, and the high colour on the cheeks, the power of the love letter has not lost its everlasting impact.
I am reminded that a text on the phone, an e-mail in a saved account folder, or a voicemail is no match for the mighty pen to paper, crinkle of the sheet, worn and wrinkled from being read so often and charished for the words, love letter.