Sunday, April 22nd, 2018

Ruines de la Mine d’Eustis / Ruins of the Eustis Mine

Earth Day, 2018


“The Eustis mine was known in turn as the Lower Canada (1865), Hartford (1866-1872), Crown (1872-1888), and Eustis (1888-1939) mine. With a depth of 2,260 meters, for many years it was the deepest copper mine in Canada… The barren rock extracted during the shaft sinking and the manual sorting operations was dumped along the banks of Ruisseau Eustis (now known as the Eustis 2 site). The mine closed down in 1939.”




“Environmental problems at this site are nothing new. In the early days of mining here, the sulfur contained in the ore was eliminated by roasting the ore on a bed of hot coal, which would burn for about 70 days as the sulfur oxidized. The roasting process released sulfur emissions that affected the surrounding environment and had a harmful effect on livestock and human health.”




“In 1983 samples taken by MinistΓ¨re de l’Environnement revealed that the water in Ruisseau Eustis was extremely acidic, with a pH of 2.3. In 2003 Berryman2 detected concentrations of cadmium, copper, iron, lead, and zinc in Ruisseau Eustis that were respectively 41; 2,490; 67; 25; and 65 times higher than criteria for the protection of aquatic life. As for RiviΓ¨re Massawippi, it is contaminated by both the Eustis 1 site and the high levels of heavy metals in Ruisseau Eustis.”








Saturday, April 21st, 2018

Mme. Kate’s Garden

We do some volunteer work around the school yardβ€”




we move decomposing straw bales around and whatnot.




Iris and Akiva love volunteer work!


Thursday, April 19th, 2018

The little woods behind the school

We follow the path into the little woods behind the school.

Most of the snow has melted, but the ice of the path remains.




When there is a small patch of snow, we dash across to the other sideβ€”

just to see how fast we can run.




Children who live nearby play here.




The property is part of Val-Esterie. It, too, will be sold when Val-Esterie is sold.



Wednesday, April 11th, 2018

I take photos of my children.

Some days, I take a lot of photos. Day after day.




I never want these days of childhood to end!




Some days, I hide from my camera. I don’t know why.




But I take photos of my children because my children make me smile.




I never want to forget your smiles!




I love you so.


Tuesday, April 10th, 2018

Val-Estrie in Spring.

In spring, a lonely playground remembers.




The see-saws remember laughterβ€” up and down! up and down!




One boy, by himself, can only sit and wish for up as he stays down.




The crooked boards remember THWACK! a puck and SMACK! and CRASH!




Could this weed-and-gravel ground once have allowed a bouncing a ball?




Someone stands here. Someone with a single eye that watched it all.




Circles within circles wait and wait for children to stand shoulder to shoulderβ€”

take eye, take aim, and then release!β€”

and wait and watch over the empty field.




The pool remembers heat, sunshine, laughter, splashes.

And the diving board remembers BOING!




The building remembers footsteps and chatter,

whispers and laughter, central heating, chairs sliding,

mouths eating, sleepers sleeping, light bulbs shining,

water washing, people standing, people rushing.

Its glass eyes watch all.




Will children fill this place again?


Monday, April 9th, 2018

How fares the piano?

We check on the piano




Destruction is not so slow and quite deliberate.




Then we walk home through the planted woods.




Sunday, April 8th, 2018

Ari comes to visit.

We go for a walk in the woods, because that is what we are good at.

We stop for a photograph to prove that we have been here.

Ari makes sure her dog is nice & calm and relaxed & smiling in a natural manner for the photo.




Then Ari and I trade places and she takes a picture with me in it!

It takes a while, but at last we succeed in getting Iris to almost smile.