The Pantry in St. John’s, Newfoundland

What a lovely refreshing place to have lunch!
No, it isn’t cheap but it is nutritious. I enjoyed a chicken sandwich and artichoke soup and it tasted spectacular.

If you visit our city and want to support a great cause-Autism, then you can find this lovely cafe behind the Janeway Hospital, off Prince Philip Drive. Just turn at the lights going to the Health Sciences Center and it is directly behind the Janeway. I thought I was lost but I saw the sign. There is construction but you can still get to it.

There is a list of specials written on a board on the wall, and also there is a small menu. Fresh homegrown ingredients are used when possible. There are some vegetarian items as well.

The customer service is second to none. The lady who took our 16+ orders wrote our names by our orders, to make it easier to serve us when the meals came flying out. The quiche was in high demand and there were only four pieces left if anyone at our table was interested. Most of our party drank water with our food, and the jugs were refilled quickly.

I would go there again in a heartbeat. Next time I will sit outside.

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Bucket List 2014

1. Get healthier
2. Walk a third camino. I’ve done Camino Frances and Camino Portugues.
3. Write or organize ten books. I’ve published three books so far: A Cornucopia of Ideas For New Teachers, St. Shotts: Our Home, Our Anchor and Strong Camino Woman. I’m working on five books at this point in time: Camino Portugues Adventure, How My Childhood Influenced my Teaching, Some Things Are Meant to be-10 Stories to prove this in my life, another St. Shotts book, a Pasadena book. So this is more than 3/10 done!
4. Walk the East Coast Trail
5. Walk the last part of the Via Francigena
6. Have a clothes/shoes/purse exchange for 15-25 women
7. Volunteer for two more non profit organizations
8. Make two quilts
9. Become a better chef
10. Complete a program in Health and Safety and to get a job using it. This will be my next career
11. Learn Spanish and French
12. Go on a cruise

Tell me about your bucket lists.

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Bridges on the Camino Portuguese – updated!

Originally posted on Trepidatious traveller - camino blog:

I’ve been motivated to re blog this post by caminoforums member Lucimi. She made a lovely comment in response to the post, which in turn inspired me to seek out some bridge-related quotations. The most delightful aspect of this research was that I ended up on a Winney-the-Pooh website and spent an hour or so languishing in the charming words of A A Milne. I am a few quotes short and would welcome any suggestions in the comments section below.

The sun rising behind the Vasco de Gama bridge spanning the River Tagus in Lisbon. Completed in 1998 in time for the Expo 98 World Fair. Europe's longest bridge at 17.2 km

The sun rising behind the Vasco de Gama bridge spanning the River Tagus in Lisbon. Completed in 1998 in time for the Expo 98 World Fair. Europe’s longest bridge at 17.2 km (day 2)

“Hi Magwood, great photos, especially the one of the Vasco da Gama bridge, what an impressive feat of engineering. I wonder what is it about bridges that makes them so fascinating. They join fields, forest paths…

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Calgary In September 2014

Oh, it is so great to see the children and their families! Nice to visit familiar streets and cafes, too. Walking to Prince’s Island Park was hectic with all the skateboarders, bicyclists and other walkers but it was worth it. The park is beautiful and accessible to all.

Higher Ground and The House are lovely cafes to sit and chat or just write like I do. The coffee is good and the chatter inspires one to keep busy. It helps with the creative process. I will return there every time we come.

Since I am retired now I don’t mind that the shop items are too expensive. I don’t need anything and if I chance upon a 90% off sale as I did at the Peacock Boutique, I buy items for my daughters in law, not for me. It is great to say “I don’t need more silver rings, or stylish shoes or handbags.” I might buy a pair of earrings if they strike my fancy and are less than $20. Or I might find a book for my five grand kids or for myself. You never know what you will find on Kensington. Isn’t that the thrill of browsing anyway?

So I don’t have many friends here, but the family makes up for that! I have met the neighbours and others at Callum’s birthday party. They are all so very welcoming. I could live here for a month every year, or come every two years for a week! Anywhere is home when you have family and friends who are happy you are here.

So to all the Newfoundlanders who make Alberta home, I’m happy for you. I love the trips to Canmore and Banff. I love the tiny free libraries in front of people’s houses. I love the parks and cafes. Most of all I love the friendly faces who ask where you got your accent. At least they care enough to ask! I always ask ‘And where did you get yours?’ I hope I’ll be around to come back again for a visit.

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The 2014 St. Shotts’ Weekend That Had Some Twists and Turns

Friday night was one of the worst nights that we have ever experienced, with thunder and lightening that was scary. But all of that happened after midnight. Before that there was heavy downpours but that didn’t hamper the fireworks and then the bonfire on the beach. My husband and I watched the beautiful fireworks from our front room window.

On Saturday morning we just had our kettle boiled when the power went, came back and then went for good…until nearly 10 p.m. This threw a monkey wrench into our day as we had planned to have fried fish for our guests who would be arriving around noon. The river race went ahead and the sun shone brightly. Our guests were content with sandwiches, raisin buns, bakeapple and rhubarb jam and date squares. The beer and wine were still cool, so no problems there!

My husband hooked up a small generator and kept one refrigerator going. We wondered how we would cook our chicken wings for the 5 o’clock potluck in the community hall. Peter again figured that out after our afternoon of bakeapple picking. He boiled the wings in a big pot on the barbecue and later drained the water and poured honey garlic sauce on them and simmered them in our roasting pan.

The sun was shining for the cemetery mass, and folks had no trouble finding the hall for the potluck supper. We were surprised by how much food was there. There seemed to be just as much food as ever and someone had even boiled water for tea or coffee on a propane unit outside the building. The committee members never skipped a beat! Kudos to all of them!

Then people were wondering if the dance was going ahead, and an announcement was made that it would be taking place, with or without electricity. Fine St. Shotts’ spirit!

Sure enough the band arrived and the hall was in full swing! What a night of laughter and fun! Considering there are only about 60-70 people living in this tiny community most of the time, to pull off an event for over 200 is no mean feat. All residents and visitors appreciated the involvement of committees and volunteers who gave of their time, hard work and abilities to make this an unforgettable weekend, despite the inclement weather starting it off and on Sunday afternoon and with the added burden of power stoppage. Hats off to the volunteers and the good ole Newfoundland spirit! It’s alive and well in the tiny community of St. Shotts!

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Last Day of Food Fishery August 2014

Last Day of Food Fishery August 2014.

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Last Day of Food Fishery August 2014


Just drove out on the shore to take a couple pictures of my husband and our guests going out to jigg some fish. This couple was overjoyed to be catching 10 fish for themselves. My husband Peter had been a fisherman for 40 years so they are in very capable hands.

Since I am at home cooking dinner for all of us I have a few minutes to write up some thoughts on this day in St. Shotts. I ate a big breakfast so I wouldn’t chance going on the water as the last time I was out I got terribly seasick. And I swore if I ever went again it would be on an empty stomach.

So the meal is all ready to cook slowly until the good folks are back on land. It may not take very long as they can only get 5 codfish each, a total of 15 per boat. How foolish is that, when 10 each would cut down on the expense of going out twice to get that number of fish!

The Liniden Walkie Talkie just rang but I pressed the right side button, which was probably the wrong one, and nothing happened. I held in the left side button and there was a lot of noise. No one said a word, so I’m baffled. I’ve used the gadget before so now I’m wondering if there is a problem or if the call was for someone else.

The coffee is strong and good, so I am sitting here wondering about the conversation in the boat and another call comes in. The three fisher persons are in to the wharf with their 15 fish. Already…not even an hour!


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