Feb 24, 2010

Anyone lived in a pretty how town...

When I was first asked to do a post about my town for Blogtrotting, I was a little chagrined. I could not for the life of me think of what to write about this tiny village I call home. Yes, village. It's too small to even be considered a town. Population? 350.

Mhmm. You heard me.

After putting a lot of thought into it, (and a little research), I realized that my little village has a rich history. And while it might not seem like much now, it was a pretty bangin' place to live back in the day. Literally. But, I will get back to that.

First I would like to tell show you a little bit about the province of Manitoba, because it has a little bit of everything. White sand beaches, a desert, polar bears, prairies, panoramic skies, massive freshwater lakes, boreal forests, a little bit of (really COLD) ocean and its own little corner of the Great Canadian Shield.

Grand Beach, Manitoba.


You'd find these guys up near Churchill, Manitoba.

Hudson's Bay. Brrrr.


 A familiar sight around here.


The Spirit Sands. Carberry, Manitoba.

Westhawk Lake. Made by a meteor, deep as heck.

My little village is in the South East of Manitoba. It is situated near some very prime farm land, and plopped on top of a huge deposit of dolomite limestone.

That big red dot makes it look bigger than it is.

In fact, that limestone is the reason there is a village here at all. It's top grade, and has been used in the construction of buildings all over North America. If you live in Omaha, Nebraska...or Houston, Texas...or Butte, Montana, or Ottawa, Ontario (to name a few) there is a little bit of my home tucked into a building near you.

A long, long time ago, most of Manitoba was covered in a massive lake called Lake Agassiz.

The limestone (called Tyndall Stone because, though it was blasted out of the ground in Garson, it was shipped over to the town of Tyndall before it could make its way to bigger and better places) is what is left of all the little creatures that once swam around in said lake. And, the fossils are fabulous. I spent many a day fossil hunting as a child, and still look for them to this day. You would, too. They are everywhere.

Back in the main quarrying days, this place was boomin'. But, there isn't much to do in this village these days unless you like a) fossil hunting, b) going for long walks or c) eating. Garson boasts 2 service stations, a hotel watering hole, a post office, a small grocery store, a gas bar and a restaurant. The grocery store, post office, gas bar and restaurant are all in the same building. *grin*

If you ever do make it to my neck of the woods, be sure to check out The Harvest Moon Cafe, though. You won't be sorry. World renowned for its self described "sarcastic waitering" and amazing food (cooked by an array of stellar staff, headed by 5 star chef Andrew Strong), it's worth a visit. The atmosphere is second to none. I mean, where else could you find a 5 star restaurant with a "farmer table"? Yes,  you heard me. A farmer table. At which the farmers sit in boots and coveralls, eat their toast and jam, drink their coffee and talk of seeding while the people at the next table eat this:

or this:

It's wonderful, and truly unique. Make sure you thoroughly check out the decor, too. There are beautiful, hand carved masterpieces all over the walls made by Sheila Grycki (the restaurant owner herself) and a hand painted mural on the back wall. Clicky-clicky to enlarge.


And, whatever you do, don't anger the waitstaff. 

 C'mon. I dare you.

All in all, I know Garson doesn't seem like much, but it's home. People here stop and ask if you want a ride when they see you walking. And, they're not even creepers! There are deer and bears and bunnies in the back yard! Even if it IS cold enough to freeze a witch's tit here for 7 out of 12 months, there aren't really many places I would rather be.

Because there is this out the front window:

In the winter, everything is the same color.
And these, if you are willing to look more closely:


And, a whole lot of this:

What more could a girl ask for?

I hope you enjoyed your tour, blogtrotters. If you ever do find your way here, let me know and I'll take you fossil hunting. I know allll the best spots.

I leave you with this (because I've always loved it, and it seems fitting somehow):

anyone lived in a pretty how town
(with up so floating many bells down)
spring summer autumn winter
he sang his didn’t he danced his did.
Women and men (both little and small)
cared for anyone not at all
they sowed their isn’t they reaped their same
sun moon stars rain
children guessed (but only a few
and down they forgot as up they grew
autumn winter spring summer)
that no one loved him more by more
when by now and tree by leaf
she laughed his joy she cried his grief
bird by snow and stir by still
anyone’s any was all to her
someones married their everyones
laughed their cryings and did their dance
(sleep wake hope and then) they
said their nevers they slept their dream
stars rain sun moon
(and only the snow can begin to explain
how children are apt to forget to remember
with up so floating many bells down)
one day anyone died i guess
(and no one stooped to kiss his face)
busy folk buried them side by side
little by little and was by was
all by all and deep by deep
and more by more they dream their sleep
no one and anyone earth by april
with by spirit and if by yes.
Women and men (both dong and ding)
summer autumn winter spring
reaped their sowing and went their came
sun moon stars rain


CaraBee said...

This is just wonderful! Great, great post! I can't wait for everyone to see it. The pictures are so beautiful. How is Garson not a hotbed of tourist activity? For real.

Thanks so much for this wonderful tour of your home!

*~(boom)~* said...

I'm glad you like it. :) It was fun to put together, and I now have a deeper appreciation of my quirky little home.

cat said...

Oh your town sounds beautiful. Greetings from Pretoria, South Africa.

Heather said...

I am so ignorant of Canada; I just imagine cold cold cold and nothing more. Thank you for a glimpse of your town; it is beautiful!

Shelley said...

It's a town, it's a peaceful village. I love this post. Makes me want to come on up and go fossil hunting with you. The pictures are stellar and the last one makes me want another baby. (NOT), but I sure love getting baby sugars.
Thank you so much for this very interesting and informative view of your home.

brainella said...

Wow. That's even smaller than my hometown of 1,010! The view is much better though. My mom would love the fossil hunting too...

Momisodes said...

What a gorgeous town.

I'm visiting via BlogTrotting, and so glad I stopped by for your tour. I would have never known about your tiny, but stunning neck of the woods.
It definitely seems like a wonderful place to live.

Brandy said...

Your pictures are beautiful! And as much as I love to eat (Score a point for your town!) there is no way I could move to a cold climate like that.

Then again we've gotten more than our fair share this year so if I gotta put up with the snow anyway at least I'd have all the great stuff to go with it!

Thanks for sharing!

Tracey - Just Another Mommy Blog said...

Well, my husband and son will be passing near or through your area in September for a fishing trip. Though I doubt you'd want to hang out with THEM...

Canada is beautiful. I forget how large the territories/provinces are. :) You have to know, we Americans are taught NOTHING about Canadian history. I plan to remedy that a bit with my homeschooling...

mep said...

Harvest Moon Cafe . . . I want to be there for lunch tomorrow and am totally tickled by the farmer table concept.

The picture of the setting sun and the field took my breath away.

Thanks most of all for the poem. I have not read that one in years and just loved revisiting it.

*~(boom)~* said...

Thanks guys! Garson would be thrilled at all this attention...(if it were an actual entity, capable of being thrilled)

Tracey: They could fish in the quarries! there are rainbow trout and bass. ;)
(If you go there in the spring and sit by the water, you have a strange feeling of being watched. And, you are! The baby bass are curious, and swim up in schools to peer at you. I like to feed them bread...)

mep: The farmers would let you sit with them. They are nice like that. And, I am glad you enjoyed reading that poem again. It will always be dear to my heart...

sheila said...

Beautiful! I'd love to visit (maybe live) there! The scenery is just stunning and I'm lovin those Spirit Sands.!!!

My gr. gr. grandfather used to work (and died falling into) the quarry mines here locally in Berea....many years ago. So the quarry part fascinates me, as well as the fossils. LOVE fossils!

In answer to your question at my place and my mayors genitals..lol..he wrote about them to dispell rumors about himself created by some bloggers (not me, lol)He 'needed to set the record straight'....He's an idiot.

oh2bnMT said...

Absolutely fantastic post! I want to go to your area of the world now. Thanks for sharing -

Traci said...

What a neat and tine place, not Manitoba of course. My in-laws are from Winnipeg so I have visited your neck of the woods...sort of a few times and it is was fun! Thanks for sharing.