What’s There All to Do In My Home Village?


I live in one of those villages where you do not want to blink while driving through, otherwise you might miss it.  And people do drive through by the hundreds, mostly commuters during weekdays, and on the weekend, it is the motorists on their way to the cottage. Everyone is in a hurry these days, and no one wants to slow down and discover what my village has to offer.  So to entice you, I have compiled many of the attractions.  Who knows, you may just fall in love, and decide you will want to live here as well, like my wife and I did 22 years ago.   🙂

Main Street

Main Street, car free in picture a rarity

We are a small village of around 1200 people, with a few hundred more living in the surrounding countryside.  A highlight for us is our landmark variety store and gas station.  For generations this establishment has provided fuel for the motorist, and staples such as milk and bread for us residents, or for travellers headed to the cottage.

Our gas station and variety store.

Our gas station and variety store.

With a full length verandah, the variety store even boasts a leather sofa, where we can hang out and drink our coffee or soda.  Where else can a person find any thing like that?  Such a wonderful way to slow down, hang out with others and “shoot the breeze”.   🙂

Nothing like the comforts of a leather sofa, and verandah to "'shoot the breeze" :)

Nothing like the comforts of a leather sofa, and verandah to “‘shoot the breeze” 🙂

If the variety store is closed, you do not want to miss our Country Market.  Originally the post office and general store, in years past, they have sold wonderful fresh organic produce and mouth watering home baked goods.

Country Market

Country Market

Hopefully the Country Market was not closed, but if it was, why not check out our historic grist mill.  Using the water power of the Sturgeon River, this mill has remained in the same family for generations.  Such a wonderful way to be “green”.  Not having to use electricity to grind your whole grains into flour.    🙂

The rood of the old grist mill is sagging.

Sadly, the roof of the old grist mill is sagging.

Perhaps the mill was closed.  If it was, you don’t want to miss our hotel, called the O’Neil House Hotel.  Standing virtually in it’s original state, this building is a time capsule that takes you back to the horse and buggy days.  This hotel is the last one remaining of 12, built along the route known as the Penetanguishene Road, which was originally built as a supply route during the War of 1812.  There is an ongoing battle of whether too have the building demolished or restored.

Historic O'Neil House Hotel

Historic O’Neil House Hotel

So there is not really a lot going on in my home village.  The variety store and gas station was closed 5 years ago due to a bit of environmental nightmare.  For years the older underground fuel tanks were leaking gas several decades ago.  Back then, gas was a mere pennies a gallon and instead of replacing the fuel tanks, it was much cheaper just to let them leak (and not say anything).  Every summer, the site (which is now closed), has drill rigs on site to monitor the contamination, which I have heard there is a lot.  But no one knows how serious of a health risk this is.

The Country Market, once a very thriving business was closed 6 year ago due to a fire that gutted the interior.  It has changed hands at least a couple times, but the current owners are currently fixing it up to be a small coffee shop and variety store, which is VERY exciting.  The mill closed about 30 years ago, but structurally it may be beyond repair.

Later this year the Country Market will be re-opening, after a fire closed it 6 years ago! :)

Later this year the Country Market will be re-opening, after a fire closed it 6 years ago! 🙂

So for the past 5 years if you needed fuel, milk or even a cup of coffee, it is a 6 kilometer drive.  However a good cup of coffee can be had before church Sunday morning, and you don’t even have to stay for the service.  🙂  Why do we live here?  We have lived in the same house for 22 years, and it is the people who make up the community.  Everyone is congenial and friendly.  It really has that “small town” feel!  For the kids, this community has provided great friends, and lots of stability.  Sure, there really is not much to do, and I sort of like it that way!   🙂

The church where I am lay minister.

The church where I am lay minister.

But, if you are REALLY bored, you can do what the local teenagers do for entertainment.  Tie the laces of your old shoes together, and throw them over the branches of a tree!  🙂

What the local youth do for entertainment! :)

What the local youth do for entertainment! 🙂

How about your home turf, any highs or lows.  Is there any reason why you have chosen to live where you do?  Thank you for taking the time to read!   🙂

~Carl~

©  All images and script are property of Carl Wright and The Old Fellow Goes Running.

 

 

Categories: HumourTags: , , ,

45 comments

  1. Carl ~ 😍 ~ Lovely! Thanks for going running and sharing such a cute little story!
    You ALWAYS make me smile 🙂
    And if you cant find anything at all fun here you could always join the circus 😛 xx
    Much love dear x

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Great pics and insight into your hometown Carl!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Thank you for taking us around you Carl! I enjoyed these pictures and the information 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

  4. Thank you for taking us around your village Carl! I enjoyed these pictures and the information 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  5. I live in Sacramento California. One of the things I love about it most is its proximity to the glorious Californian Coast, San Francisco, Lake Tahoe, Napa, Yosemite, etc. The city has changed a lot since I was a kid but the proximity to greatness has not!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Such an stunningly beautiful area to grow up in. The last time I was in your area was 30 years ago, a road trip down the Pacific Coast Highway from British Columbia in Canada. We missed Sacramento, and headed east further south to meet the High Sierras, Death Valley, Vegas and then the Grand Canyon. Could have used a lot more time, (which is always the way with such an incredible trip), but I am so grateful to have had that opportunity. 🙂
      Thank you so much for reading and sharing your wonderful comment. 🙂
      ~Carl~

      Liked by 1 person

  6. If you live in a village I grew up in a hamlet! We moved there when I was 4 and I left ‘home’ at 18. Maybe there are 150 residents, a church, a post box, a bus stop, no post office, no shop and a farm shop which was technically in Little X as opposed to Great X. It was unfortunately the birth place of the witch hunter general in the UK. Anyways, sounds like you live in a peaceful place full of history! The mill reminds of a frontier town! Thank you for a tour of your village!

    Liked by 2 people

    • Wow, Natalie, this really is fascinating. Thank you for commenting with such detail. I can almost picture your sleepy little hamlet in the country. And the “witch hunter general”…wow! Hopefully this little bit of history, has not tainted or stigmatised your childhood hamlet.

      It has been a wonderful place here to grow the family. Some of those old buildings like the mill have such historical significance, which I would love to see preserved. Several times in the summer, I would see painters set up with paint and easel, putting this piece of history to canvas. Compared to Europe, all our “old” buildings are quite new.

      Thank you Natalie for your wonderful comment. 🙂

      ~Carl~

      Like

  7. That was quite a tour you took me on Carl 🙂 Enjoyed the tranquility. The old grist looks impressive!
    My work is what has driven my place of stay off late – http://images.mid-day.com/images/2014/oct/Hinjewadi-IT-Park-traffic.jpg This image should give you a good idea of my work commute, although the location of home is a little away in a peaceful, green lane.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Wow, Prajakta, that is SOME commute. My mental image of you is someone who is very calm and collected. How do you manage? So good to read that your home is tucked away down that peaceful, green lane. It must be really something to look forward to, after your daily commute! 🙂
      Thank you so much for reading and sharing! 🙂
      ~Carl~

      Like

  8. I think you should post some pictures in the summer and fall! Your area is so nice then! Show off Ontario’s colours! The shoes in the tree made me laugh – I don’t know why people do that.. it’s so silly. I always picture someone walking around barefoot when I see that. And sometimes, I feel bad for the shoes! 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • Yeah, the shoes used to be thrown over hydro wires, and Hydro One would come by with their bucket trucks to remove them on a regular basis. Then all of a sudden it stopped. I am assuming the police might have gotten involved, sparking a bit of fear in the youth, because now the shoes are nearly always on tree limbs. However, I see on the picture one pair did end up on the wires. The amount of shoes that have made it onto the wires and branches over the years is staggering. I am beginning to think there MUST be people walking around barefoot. Where do they all come from? And I can picture the mother and father asking, “What did you do with your shoes?….LOL

      I am very fortunate to live where I do. It is indeed very, very pretty. This is a great suggestion. I think I will showcase the area, with some pictures from the summer and fall.

      From what I have heard, seasonal temperatures next week! 🙂

      Thank you so much Fleck for the visit. You always make my day! 🙂

      Like

  9. Hey Carl! Want to join me in black and white photo challenge? I just joined with another blogging buddy to do a five day black & white photo challenge. Seems like fun. If you are interested, more information is here: https://cometravelalong.wordpress.com/2015/02/26/5-day-black-white-photo-challenge-5th-day-achievement/

    Liked by 1 person

    • Hi Ruchi,

      I have never done anything like this before, but I might just give it a try. A couple of technicalities however. I have no idea how to do a black and white photograph…..LOL. My daughter is coming home from university this weekend. I am sure she can help me. 🙂

      If it is okay, I will not be able to start until next week. Am travelling away this weekend to run this half marathon, and will be without a computer for those 2 days. (I work off of a desktop computer), 🙂

      Thank you so much Rucchi. I am very honoured that you asked me. 🙂

      ~Carl~

      Liked by 1 person

      • Hi Carl, Great to know that you are open to join this challenge. And there is no timeline to start the challenge so you can begin at your will. If it helps I use Picasa software to change my original picture to black & white.
        Also do share your experiences of this half marathon. Kudos to you for this run 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

      • Thank you so much for this info. This means a lot. Before I knew it, my daughter was back on the bus returning to university, so I never got to talk to her about black and white photos….LOL. (just came home for a job interview for the summer).

        Will be leaving shortly for the run. I will share a recap! 🙂

        ~Carl~

        Liked by 1 person

  10. Thank you for lovely tour of your village! You are so right what matters is the community, they make up the place where we live in as home. What a wonderful story of your unique hometown..best wishes Carl..

    Liked by 1 person

  11. I grew up in a very small town too. Loved your humor and sense of fun in taking us on the tour!

    Liked by 1 person

  12. Lovely snow-topped photos, Carl. It’s always the people. That’s why we stay where we do – the neighborhood, office, even church. It’s the relationships where we feel at home.

    Liked by 1 person

  13. Beautiful photos and nice cozy sounding—albeit freezing–town! Your church has that style of architecture that I’ve always loved. I don’t know what you call it, but it is lovely. I did find the shoe thing surprising! I’ve seen that in some rough areas of New York City and the South, much different, probably than your town.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Hi April, thank you so much for stopping by and visiting my little village. Very interesting what you shared about the shoes in New York and the South. Yeah, I also love the architecture of the church. It is pretty cool in the bell tower. On the wall there are written names and dates that go back almost 100 years. Definitely will not paint over that wall. This is the 3rd church of the congregation. The 1st built in 1851, but burnt down in 1867 and 2nd church was built. This one eventually became outgrown, and in 1896 the present church was built.
      Hope your precious family is all well. 🙂
      ~Carl~

      Like

  14. I love little towns like this and love a good small community. Always something to see in every town. Beth

    Liked by 1 person

  15. Small never means uninteresting. And what a person might take for granted and even be bored by, is exotic to a stranger. Great coverage of your town.

    Liked by 1 person

  16. This post really brings back memories…I live in Minneapolis, MN now, and I love the conveniences offered by a big city. Good coffee, good beer, multiple climbing gyms, plenty of things to do and always options.

    That being said, I miss the small town life sometimes. Things are simpler, people are nicer, and the pace is just a little more relaxed. I’ll have to visit your town sometime.

    Liked by 1 person

  17. thanks for sharing about your town. I’ve been wanting to write about where I’ve been living for the past year. At 2000 people its slightly more populated. I love that small town feel though. It really strengthens the community and it must be an awesome place to run since everyone must know you and wave!

    Liked by 1 person

    • You are very welcome Jordan. Thank you for stopping by to read and comment.

      I am looking forward to when you write about your hometown. Twelve years ago I spent 18 days in Maui and Molokai. Brought my bike panniers with me, and rented a bike in Kaunakakai, Molokai, and spent 11 days leisurely exploring this beautiful island. Camped in regional campgrounds and state parks. I have a glimpse of your town in my mind of what it might be like, from my wonderful experiences in the towns on Molokai.

      Most people do wave when they see me running. It really is great! 🙂

      ~Carl~

      Like

      • thats almost exactly what its like! I’m glad you know what I’m talking about! thats awesome you got to explore molokai, must have been a beautiful trip experiencing the “real” hawaii.

        Liked by 1 person

      • It was absolutely incredible Jordan. There is such a difference between the “real” Hawaii that I experienced and all that hotel and resort stuff.
        In some ways it must be hard for you to see the new tourist developments spring up. It definitely would change the atmosphere.

        Like

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