Our County Correspondents
On Friday, Feb. 27 at 6 p.m. there will be a free family movie at the Elda Rouleau School in the cafeteria and in the gym. Also there will be free babysitting in the gym. This event is endorsed by St. Finnan’s Parish. For more information contact Cassie at 613-525-3208.
Winners were Gaetan Lascelles and Faye Montgomery, Hélène Leduc and Homer Grant, Gracia Séguin and Madeleine Théoret. The Alexandria Bridge Club meets every Tuesday at Fraternité Hall on St-Paul Street at 7 p.m. For more info call 613-525-4969.
On Tuesday, Feb. 17 we had the euchre party. The winners were Guy Quesnel, Marion MacGillvray, Gilbert Bonenfant, Claire Paquette, Michel Bourbonnais, Jean-Guy Carrière and the skunk went to Mora Cunning. The door prize went to Hélèna Campeau and the 50/5-5-5 draw went to Agathe Charbonneau, Huguette Titley, Michel Bourbonnais and Tonie Oetelaar. Special prizes were drawn and the winners were Huguette Titley and Hélèna Campeau. Congratulations to all the winners. Our next card party is March 3 at 1:30 p.m.
Here are the winners of the sandbags February 6. High square Jeannine Hotte and Rita Miller 1230, Hélèna Campeau 1210, Denis Avon 1230, Jean-Guy Chénier with Maurice Séguin 1130. High single Rhéa Cardinal 4670, Lorraine Alain 4620, Claude Robinson 4300 and Rhéal Cyr 4210. High double Lorraine Alain 9040, Rita Miller 8240, Rhéal Cyr 7960 and Fernand St-Louis 7670.
This is the last week for the Shop Hop in Alexandria and Green Valley. Get your card stamped by all 21 members and be entered in the draw to win $1,000 in Chamber Dollars. Contest closes February 28.
Hello, Dalkeith. My, we are quiet these days. Not a peep from anyone. Frozen and silent, like this winter we're having, unless the wind is up, and howling around the buildings and drifting in the roads. I will go out on a limb and predict that it will get warmer starting this weekend.
Clara Taylor is making good progress with her knee that is healing from a severe fall earlier this winter. My friend Debbie is receiving her first OAS cheque this week. Show me the money, honey.
Training Cinderella is slow and steady. She is not giving too much attitude and still jumps into her halter. We are working on "the bridge" in preparation for her trail class this summer. She put one foot on it today. Keep you posted.
So don't be shy and send me “the news” from your house to mine. Until next week, keep your stick on the ice and prayer in your hearts. Cheers, Maggie.
We stand on guard...
Last week, Terry showed me an e-mail that was making the rounds concerning immigration to our fair land. Entitled “Words from 1907,” the text was purportedly from a speech made in 1907 by Canada’s seventh Prime Minister, Sir Wilfred Laurier. Here is what Laurier or his speechwriters were said to have penned: “First of all we must insist that the immigrant that comes here is willing to become a Canadian and is willing to assimilate our ways, he should be treated on equal grounds and it would be shameful to discriminate against such a person for reasons of their beliefs or the place of birth or origin. But it is the responsibility of that person to become a Canadian in all aspects of life, nothing else but a Canadian. There can be no divided allegiance here. Any man who says that he is a Canadian, but tries to impose his customs and habits upon us, is not a Canadian. We have room for only one flag, the Canadian flag. There is room for only two languages here, English and French. And we have room for loyalty, but only one, loyalty to the Canadian people. We won't accept anyone, I'm saying anyone, who will try to impose his religion or his customs on us.”
Never content to leave well enough alone, I decided to delve into the passage a bit deeper. In just a few Google seconds, I discovered that this passage had been lighting up blogs and the email universe since at least 2010. Moreover, whenever it popped up, there was always someone there to question its authenticity.
While I have yet to definitively identify the source, some commentators suggest these remarks (in an unadulterated form) were actually made by the former U.S. President, Theodore Roosevelt in 1917. In the Roosevelt version, the line “There is room for only two languages here, English and French” had originally been “There is room for only one language here, English.”
Obviously, Mr. Roosevelt’s “English-only” version wouldn’t work in a quote attributed to Laurier, Canada’s first francophone Prime Minister. So, somewhere along the line, the text was gently massaged.
The real question here is: why has this short passage had such staying power? I believe it’s because it resonates with so many ordinary Canadians from all walks of life. It’s a sentiment that many of them hold to be true, to one degree or another. And it’s one they know will never be voiced by today’s MPs and MPPs, let alone our so-politically-correct apparatchik and intelligentsia.
Soccer in jeopardy
Do you or your kids participate in the Dunvegan Soccer pro- gram? If so, this appeal is intended for you. Dunvegan desperately needs a concerned parent or young adult to represent our community on the Glengarry Soccer League committee.
Yes, I know you’re terribly busy and that probably both you and your spouse work out of the home. But what do you think the parents of past generations were doing? Sitting around on their hands, enjoying a life of leisure and sipping Mai Tais? Not in my experience. Parents of old realized that programs like Dunvegan Soccer didn’t just happen; they needed volunteer support from the community. And for years this support was forthcoming… until recently.
It was during my second time at bat as President of the DRA that I noticed attracting volunteers to staff our fund-raising booth at the Maxville Fair and Highland Games was becoming increasingly difficult. People still wanted the programs we offered, but had little or no interest in donating a few hours to help make them happen.
What I saw emerging was more of a “drop and shop” ethic where these programs were seen as a “right” and that ensuring the programs’ survival fell into the “pas ma job” column.
Indeed, this may be what’s in store for the future. Given how busy young parents are today, volunteerism may be dying a fast death. Which is fine, as long as these same families, instead of donating their time, are willing to pay for the programs with actual dollars. In the case of the Dunvegan Soccer Representative, I can see where this could easily become a paid position. In which case, each player’s family will be hit with much higher fees.
On the other hand, I could be wrong. I often am. Some community-minded person may well put up his or her hand and volunteer to be Dunvegan’s rep for a couple years. If that person is you, please call Vivian Franklin at 613-527-3242 or Ben Williams at 613-527-4006. The community will be in your debt.
Sea change for euchre
worried that the weather gods had conspired to ruin another Dunvegan Euchre Luncheon. The sky was Pantone Cool Gray #4 and the mercury, which hovered around the minus double digits, was made even more biting by a strong west wind. And yet despite winter’s bluster, players (albeit not quite as many as usual) did come out to eat, play and socialize… including two new faces, Bruno and Theresa Carriere, from Alexandria.
If you’re wondering who took home prizes last Friday, here’s the official scorecard. High Hand: Dytha Dixon, Doug (Tigger) Benson and Theresa Carrière; 50/50: June Raymond, Arlene Munro and Tigger Benson; Lone Hand: Tigger Benson; Door Prize: Dytha Dixon.
The Dunvegan game was never intended to be a highstakes, cutthroat tournament. It was always seen as more of a social outing, a time for seniors to catch up with old friends and meet new ones. But I have noticed a change over the past few months. The games seemed more relaxed and people appeared to be having more fun. So I asked DRA euchre-meister, Ann Stewart, if I was imagining things and she agreed. She too had noticed the shift.
So if you played in Dunvegan in the past and stopped, for whatever reason, you might want to give us another try Friday, March 20. At least once during the winter months, we serve chili in place of the usual soup course. And that’s our plan for March, the end of our soup season. With any luck, I may even be able to talk Terry into baking her delicious cornbread. It’s always the perfect complement to bowl of hot (not spicy) chili.
Free course offers hope
As those of you who read me regularly may recall, one of my volunteer commitments is the Cornwall & District Family Support Group. In addition to a monthly support group for family caregivers dealing with a mentally ill loved one, the CDFSG advocates on behalf of patients and their families for improved mental health services in this region. As well, once a year, we offer a free Family-to-Family Education course. Developed by the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) in the United States, the course provides families with the knowledge they need to help a loved one struggling with bipolar disorder, depression, schizophrenia or other serious mental health problems. Taught by volunteers with first-hand experience, the classes are held in Cornwall one night a week from 6:00 - 8:30 pm. The course lasts for 11 weeks, during which time you’ll learn: How to talk with relatives who are mentally ill; How to deal with feelings of guilt; About treatments, medications and side effects; How to handle crises and relapses; How to take care of yourself — and much more.
Classes start at the end of March and fill up fast. So if you or someone you know is interested in attending, just call Suzanne in the Cornwall hospital’s Community Mental Health office at 613-936-9236. Please note that this course is not intended for persons suffering from mental illness themselves. It is only for their family members and close friends.
The McDonell family on Concession 5 hosted their pit party Sunday, Feb. 15, despite the cold weather. All enjoyed a fun day which included sledding, skiing, tobogganing and a barbecue.
Condolences to the McDougald family of Concession 4 on the recent passing of Hugh McDougald on Feb. 5.
During the season of Lent, a Holy Hour of Prayer will be held Fridays at 11 a.m. at St. Finnan’s. All are welcome.
Happy belated birthday wishes to Charles McKinnon on Feb. 19 and Donnie Raymond on Feb. 17.
Jamie Arseneault and Erika Reggentin are the latest of a long line of proud owners of this timber framed barn located on Blythe Side Road west of Dunvegan. An original hay barn used for storage, dairy barn converted into a workshop, and this general...