Karen McMillan reports that she and her sister, along with three other girl cousins have returned from an exciting summer vacation which included visits to Iceland, Sweden, and to Denmark where they were able to visit with some Danish cousins. Never idle for long, she participated in the “Ride to Conquer Cancer” bicycle tour last weekend and would be happy to accept donations of support at her web page http:// www.conquercancer.ca/goto/ karenmcmillan. Karen also reports that the McMillan family is mourning the loss of their very dear Aunt Mildred; condolences are extended to the family.
Other travellers who have recently returned home are Laurie and Joan Reiffenstein who spent some time on Vancouver Island seeing the sights as well as paying a visit to Eileen Peltier (n. Jensen) in Duncan.
The most recent summer storm brought more rain and there are some reports of hail but we have not heard of any severe damage in the immediate Dalum area. The weather network shows sunny weather ahead and that will be a welcome change for those putting up hay as well as for organizers of events such as the Heavy Horse event to be held at Verdant Valley on Saturday.
Pastor Peter Rasmussen arrived in Dalum in 1920 when the community was in its infancy. In those days pioneer families full of hope and enthusiasm were developing farm yards which were nestled together much more closely than now. The farms are larger and the farm families fewer in the twenty-first century but many remain, as does the fence line on the large hill which forms part of the western bank of the coulee where the pioneer pastor was inspired to record the following in his personal memoirs. The year is not stated but it was in the early days of our community, before daylight saving time came into use (in 2016 the sunrise occurs an hour later during the summer) and before a view of the horizon included the many radio towers and windmills with their red flashing beacons. With planning for our centennial celebration in mind, I include in this August 10 report an excerpt from “An August Tenth Sunrise”, observations by Pastor Peter Rasmussen.
“I had decided that I wanted to see a sunrise from the top of the hill. I had been there many times during day and at eventide. At 4:30 on the 10th of August I go out through the door. Everything is quiet in the house, everyone else is asleep. But outside the poultry have begun to stir and a young rooster makes strenuous efforts to produce a loud crow. I see only two stars, one in the east (the morning star) and one in the south. All the others, which used to shine so brightly, are seen no more.”
“First my steps go down the path through the deep coulee, or shall I call it the vale of shadows at this time of day. There is water here and there in the deep holes and grass in the coulee bottom and well up the sides. There are also many trails. They twist and turn in and out past the water holes and the points of land. They cross each other time and again as if to form a complete net. Now I begin to rise, the light becomes clearer over the prairie grass. A flock of prairie chickens takes off and some black crows pass to the north. Somewhat out of breath I reach the top of the hill and sit down on a rock with my back against a fence post. A soft southerly wind cools me. A veil of fog lies over the river valley towards the Hand Hills. A single, long, narrow cloud toward the east parallels the earth’s surface like an island in an ocean of light, before the sun comes. Even though the sky to the west doesn’t have a single cloud it is dull and dark.”
“At the point where I surmise the sun soon will rise it becomes clearer and clearer. I believe that the presence of the cloud enhances the sunshine in its mounting glow. It seems to me that never before have I seen such shimmering brightness. And now a wonder occurs, the first vibrating rays. My eyes can no longer stand to look at it without being blinded and yet I try again and again. Then, over the barrier of a hill, the sun surged royally - crescent, half-dish, full orb - and overlooked the world. The luminous tide flooded the prairie country.”
“Here is a lovely view, so far and wide. From here one can see so many homes in the Danish colony. The houses to the west, with windows to the east, shine and sparkle as if they were illuminated. From some, smoke rises in the clear, quiet morning. All are surrounded by golden fields of wheat, for harvest time has arrived with bountiful promise. But now there is a great difference in how one looks at all of these homes. There is blessing, in the quiet of ones thoughts, to recommend them to God’s keeping. In this way one enters into a completely different relationship to these homes even though the people within have no knowledge of it. Who knows if possibly there are people somewhere in the world who are sending kindly thoughts to the man sitting all alone on this hill top? Like the trails in the coulee that cross each other there are many, many threads, invisible threads, in the life of people and between people.”
The pastor continued his essay in the form of a sermon but I will conclude by asking those whose life trails have led away from Dalum to return in 2018 when we celebrate the centennial of our community.
You may continue to call Gerald and Maryann Rasmussen at 403-823-2036 with your news items or, e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org. and participation. Moneys raised from this fundraiser goes toward special projects, such as the thermal imaging camera and extrication equipment. This community is so generous and we work hard to be sure you get the most bang for your buck. Thank you again for your support and generosity. And thank you to all of the spouses for their hard work and their support!
The Big Valley Golf Club will be holding Night Golf on Friday, Aug. 12. Registration is at 6:30 p.m. with tee off at 7:00 p.m. There will be 9 holes in the daylight and 9 holes at night with a smokie lunch after first nine holes. For more information, call 741-4143.
This Saturday and Sunday, the Calgary Free-Mo club will be showcasing their thirteenth annual Free-Mo train show in the Big Valley arena. Each year model train enthu- siasts construct and operate one of the largest model train lay-outs of its type in North America. The display covers over 500 feet of bench work, which almost takes up the entire surface of the Big Valley arena. Come on down to Big Valley to check out this remarkable and fascinating free event.
August birthday wishes go out to Brice Burnstad – 1, Kelly Armstrong – 3, Phyllis Garrison – 5, Nora Saar – 5, Brooklyn Slootweg – 6, Joanne Bartley – 7, Kathy Evans – 8, Donna Clark – 9, Dorothy Annable – 9, Tess Thurston – 9, Wayne Skocdopole – 10, Bill Smillie – 13, Marie Gridley – 14, Luke Skocdopole – 15, Taylor Baird – 15, Connie Watts – 15, Cheryl Elines – 16, Val Erickson – 16, Winnie Stewart – 17, Vi Milton – 18, Rick Stewart – 18, Grace McMullin – 20, Cerwin Annable – 20, Wayne Brenchley – 21, Wayne Saar – 21, Sam Thurston – 22, Ainsleigh Lucki – 23, Edgar Siegrist – 24, Don Emblau – 24, Dorothy Dressler – 25, Deagan Lucki – 27, Cindy Torp – 27, Wayne Fraser – 28, Zachary Duncan – 28, Cheryl VanHaga – 29 and Mel Dodds – 31. Happy anniversary to Harvey & Judey Christensen – 3, Dale & Rebecca Johnston – 5, David & Debra Johnston – 6, Gerrit & Terry Visser – 8, Bill & Verna Kirtley – 12, Brent & Cindy Mailer – 17, Dan & Jenny Houle – 19, Mel & Lois Miller – 23 and Terry & Janel Annable – 24.
CALL FOR YOUR FREE QUOTE