Morning Rush Hour - Glenna MacNeil
On weekends I’m lucky enough to be home (that’s most – haha!), I usually spend my mornings (until the ferry gets in – that’s when the action for the day starts) sitting with my mom chatting about the week that’s gone by.
I don’t know if she realizes it or not, but this is one of the things I look forward to most about being home. I cherish just knowing we’ll have that time together no matter what (within reason of course). Now depending on the season, you could find us nestled around our wood stove under warm blankets in rocking chairs, sitting at the kitchen table looking out to sea from our big picture window, or best of all, on the porch with our feet up while watching the bustle of the island waking up.In April, it’s still just a bit cold for Saturday mornings on the porch – but I have high hopes for this coming weekend.
Recently we were hanging around the kitchen table catching up, and my mom mentioned to me that she had met some very interesting visitors the week before. It’s easy as a tancooker to pick out visitors (or Honorary Tancookers as I like to call them) – we both agree – it’s something about the way they seem awed by it all. You can often tell that they’re just brimming with questions, and this couple apparently had just that look about them. Mom introduced herself, answered their many questions, and learned that we had actually been lucky enough to become part of a larger adventure.
Glenna and Curtis MacNeil are in the midst of visiting a whole host of beaches all over Nova Scotia (they have a list of must sees) and we had somehow made it onto their list and into their journey (we hope our beach didn’t disappoint – it’s not white sand, but it certainly has it’s own unique charm – a great place for collecting beach glass!). They’ve had the opportunity through these visits to really experience the communities of Nova Scotia. Glenna is also working on a “photo a day for a year” challenge. I thought this story was interesting, and really embodied the spirit and sense of adventure shared by many of our island visitors. We’re a bit of a mystery and we know it, but that’s part of the charm (and we kind of like it too). With this in mind, I asked them if they might tell us what they thought of our little island – Glenna has humbly obliged – here’s the great piece she’s written (including some stunning photos) about her visit:
A Day on Tancook Island – By Glenna MacNeil
We love the ocean, and we love beaches, so we decided about a year ago, to visit as many beaches around Nova Scotia as we could. I have also been working on a project of my own, “A Photo A Day For A Year”. With both objectives in mind, we have been making our way through our list and have discovered more incredible places than we ever imagined. Tancook Island was next on our list, so we recently made our way there.
I would have to say, we were smitten from the moment we stepped on the dock in Chester. The activity around us was all new, and captivated our attention immediately. We watched intently as a small crane onboard the ferry loaded crates and other items. Once inside the passenger area of the ferry, we already felt as though we left “reality” behind. A community bulletin board seemed to have garnered a lot of attention. Could it be that the bulletin board was the “hub” of community news? As testament to how immediately we were intrigued, we even bought a book of tickets for future passage…already confident that this would be a place we would enjoy and to which we would return!
It was a beautiful sunny morning, and the sun was warm enough on our mid-morning run to allow us to stand outside on the deck. The beauty and calm that surrounded us was heaven! Ahead of us, and as if on cue, a fishing boat sailed through the ray of the sun reflected on the water, creating a perfect silhouette.
Once on the Island, we were eager to start exploring. A dirt road seemed to run the length of the Island, and we started off in the direction that seemed to head to the centre of “town”. There was a small Post Office, a Restaurant (closed for the season), a small garage that housed an RCMP office, and a sign to direct us to other highlights. The hand painted sign read, “Tancook Recreation Center and School”…and….”Public Outhouses”, with an arrow to indicate their location!
Tancook - Glenna MacNeil
As we walked along, we were amazed by the sense of peace that surrounded us. It was as if we were alone in the world. A few cars did pass us. Their inhabitants seemed to be unfazed by two strangers walking through their territory, and offered a smile and a wave. We enjoyed our lunch at a perfectly placed picnic table, enjoying the sense of calm and solitude this place offered.
We easily passed the day…walking and enjoying the scenery and uniqueness, collecting beach glass, and gathering 100 questions about the people and their lives on this island.
Too soon it seemed, we had to make our way to the ferry for our departure. As luck would have it, local resident, MaryBeth, introduced herself to us as we waited to board the ferry. She was able to answer our 100 questions, and offered additional information as well. Our one hour return to Chester passed as if it were minutes!
When we returned home, a friend asked what was on this island…meaning what organized activity would entertain her if she went there. With broad grins, we replied. “Nothing!” This is perhaps the best offering Tancook has. It is untouched. People live simple lives, free of the harassment of the “fast” life many of us call our daily routine. Tancook is so close…yet is so far away from our reality. Tancook has definitely called to us! We have been raving about it since our visit….and even dream of a day when we might join its inhabitants.
If you are looking for an adventure like no other, you should make your way to Tancook Island. Is just has a sense of “being”…like no other place we have visited.
We have even come up with a slogan for Tancook Island, should its lucky residents ever need one: “Tancook Island…where a day lasts as long as a day should”.
A big thanks to you Glenna for sharing the story of your day on the island with us. Consider this your open invitation to come back anytime. And remember, on tancook, we consider the more the merrier.
Your Island Girl,
PS: Are you one of our Honorary Tancookers? If you have an interesting story to tell about your visit, please send it to firstname.lastname@example.org (with pictures too please!)