Challenges of Discovery

Hail Brave Hearts

The never ending adventure to voyage and discovery to meet and greet the new people, to learn their ways.  Peace among us is a priority, gifts and exchange, routes of travel and a path to the new world.  Discover, trade and progress, learn the language, the customs, the society.  There are many peoples, many societies, many worlds to discover.  Come with this explorer into the heart of our land and meet the people, listen to their stories, share their passions, learn their wisdom.  This is New France, in 1615, with an exploration into the aboriginal territories of Ontario, as far as Georgian Bay and Lake Nippissing, in search of a route to the Orient.

The Orient.  That spell binding, alluring destination of dreams.  Silk, spices, riches.  The Orient!  Find the route through Canada, we know it’s there.  Yes, it is, but not this time.  Not in 1615, when the world was forested and filled with mighty, turbulent rivers, with rapids and waterfalls to portage.  Not in 1615 when every few hundred kilometers brought new nations of aboriginals to meet and negotiate with.  As skilled and brilliant as these explorers were, the land is too large, the peoples too many, the dangers too difficult and the demands too great.  Still, the path to the Orient exists, but the people need to know these explorers, before extending such a substantial gift as the whereabouts of this sought after trail.

Samuel de Champlain 1604-1616

Travel and travel and travel, is a must.  Explore the world around and before you.  Go to these uncharted lands.  Bring peace, negotiation and prosperity with you, if you can.  It’s a daunting mission, to be the explorer, to discover and collaborate with people of unknown character.  Meeting them in their own land, on their own terms.  Peace and skilled negotiation.  The intellect soars as the negotiations are successful and the peoples minds are set at ease, with this friend.  Gratitude for such necessary gifts, as some burdens are lifted and some work is eased.  Sharing and caring, the beginning of a new world.  The start of a new land.  This is now New France, being explored and documented and carefully mapped.  Each river that is traveled, each new tribe that is encountered, each new language that is spoken and the forest of trees, plants and animals to marvel at as well.  All carefully described, by this well educated person, who knew the land so well.

This is the life of a great explorer, Samuel de Champlain.  His mission of discovery was so successful that it formed peaceful and prosperous relations with several aboriginal tribes and the French people, who earnestly sought common bonds and  well intended relationships with the people of the new world.  The needs for these negotiations for the fur traders were high.  In the end Champlain died in Quebec city with only 150 settlers living in the colony.

With the explorer, came the missionaries.  Jesuit priests from France, intent on bringing Christianity to the people of Canada.  This seemed necessary for the aboriginals to understand the religion of the French people  so that they would have a common bond in humanity to share.  Peace among the people, brothers in Christ.  Although the aboriginals had their own religion, with their own after life, it was deemed essential to bring these people to Jesus.  Such was the quest of the Jesuits who pursued this mission to the ends of their lives.

Carhagouha – 1615 site of first Mass in Ontario

written by Dr. Louise Hayes

February 28, 2020

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The Iroquois of Hochelaga

Hail! You awesome human. We meet and we are joyous. It is with gladness that we greet the newcomers to our great land. Come, eat, fill your bellies from our larder, you will not starve among us. We feed you, we accept you, friend, speak with us. We will teach you and help you, friend, come to our village, for conversation and peace among us.

You, oh lofty European, with your fine boat, your interesting garment, your unusual style. How intriguing that you should come here to meet us. Tell us about yourselves, your passage, your ways, your reason for being here.

And so, the dialogue occurs. A conversation on the island of Montreal, between the explore Jacques Cartier and the Iroquois of Hochelaga.

The kindness of the  people, the curiosity, goodwill, companionship and generosity all marked in the captains log.  A fine people of bravery and fellowship, standing at the gateway to the interior of Canada.  A brave new land.  A people of skills and craftsmanship who built a fortress of wood with a village of longhouses inside it.  A people who farmed the land, planted crops, fished in the waters of the St. Lawrence River.  A people with some invention, with tools and self sufficiency, that were able to rely on their wits and toil for their survival.

https://www.canadashistory.ca/explore/french-canada/the-mystery-village

These are the  people who are lost to us, only six years had passed and they are gone.  Where did you vanish to, you kind and courageous people?  Where did you go, when we needed your stories?  Your kinship is important to us, yet you vanish into history.  A people of fame, marked in the year 1535 and gone 6 years later in 1541.  Man the builder.  A fortress of wood, with longhouses inside it.  A village to protect the 1500 occupants.  The historical significance of this site is immense, since the builder has tools and a method of construction which was unique to them.  They also had social order which helped them to live congenially in such a confined space.  But where did you go,  oh fine human?  A human of intellect and high aptitudes, of compassion and caring, vanishing into the unknown in such a few short years.  

The mystery of Hochelaga still haunts us, as we excavate Montreal.  Although the people vanished, the message survived.  Come, friend, speak with us.  The exploration of Canada and later the fur trade.

written by Dr. Louise Hayes

February 1, 2020

Hochelaga

Hail Bravehearts

It’s a fabulous notion, to start anew, with fresh ideas, community, land and skills. Exciting and enticing, to feel the fresh air, to feel freedom, adventure to call this land your home. The tingling sensation of anticipation and joy. At last, a home. It’s a long way to voyage, to come to Canada, to serve in the conquest of a voyage so rare. To build it, so live it, the adventure of the century, to dwell in the new colony, to be history.

Now venture along the St. Lawrence, with it’s turbulent waters. See the sweet little town called Quebec, but travel, just a little bit further. Another 255 kilometers to the new city of Montreal. A fabulous place, built with the dedication of the colonialist. A fine mind set on conquering a new frontier. Another test of strength and courage, but also negotiation, acceptance and peace. A chance for a new home, a new life, but sharing. To share the land with strangers who will be your neighbors, who will, in their own way, help to make the nation and the colony survive. An unusual friendship, the European and the aboriginal, but so it will be, in the commerce of trade and in the harmony of the land. Peace be with us.

From the voyages of Jacques Cartier, to the new settlers of the land, the joy of adventure is with us.

Jacques Cartier. A voyage of discovery in Canada, the search for a new land. Fabulous! To travel so far, to strive so diligently, to be courageous and educated is such fine arts as navigation, weather, geography, negotiation and more. It’s the skills of human intelligence that wins this fine race across the Atlantic Ocean.

A daring adventure filled with the unknown. A curiosity that must be resolved, the question of what’s out there? Bring back gold, riches and spices. Find a way to the orient! Adventure, oh braves ones, out to the sea, into the winter and to the dangers that it brings. Rest in the camp, die in the land, but bring back gold, riches and spices. Find the path to Asia! Be fantastic, be noble, be brave, be successful be obedient. Bring back gold!

It’s a brave new world, filled with brave new people who must be met and communicated with. It is with hard work and toil, that this endevour pays off so well. The people are kind. Joy be with us! Good luck and good fortune have found the explorers as they land on these shores among strangers who are congenial, or intended to be.

October 2, 1535 was a grand day, for a great nation. The expedition lands in Hochelaga an Iroquois village which will become part of the modern city of Montreal. Share the joy, share the harvest, share the land, meet the people, be our friends. Come, Jacques Cartier, eat with us, talk to us. Don’t be strangers. But the discourse lasted only a few hours before the Europeans returned to the camp upstream, after naming the hill behind Hochelaga, Mont Royal.

Foiled again! The wintry blasts of icy cold are too much of a burden to bear. By more good fortune, the camping party is saved from scurvy, which did claim 25 lives during the winter.

Come, oh fine humans, drink the Iroquois tea of white pine needles, to cure your scurvy and to save your lives. Drink to your good health, literally.

When spring finally came, in the merry month of May, the beleagured group of adventurers return to France with positive reports of a river to the west. The pathway to Asia, to riches, spices and gold, lay through the continent, in the land called Canada.

written by Dr. Louise Hayes

December 17, 2019

Pemican

Hail Brave hearts.

The season’s change and so do I.  Cast off your winter garment, it is spring.  The receding snows and baking sun, take the blanket of white away, leaving behind the winter’s dead brown world.  A cool, late spring, with slow growth, keeps the winter hanging on.  It’s time for spring, the great wild calls, as the migrating birds arrive and the hibernating animals emerge.  It’s time for spring, call the adventurers as they pull out their bikes for a ride in the woods.  The ski hill closes, the equipment is stored, coats and boots hang in closets.  Birds gather in warm pools, waiting for the ice to melt.  Come on spring, it’s your show now!

Slowly the warming sun, encourages the grass to become green, tiny buds on trees begin to emerge and the promise of a new world becomes real.  Mating pairs can’t wait to start their families and the tiny offspring need to be warm.  Winter has withdrawn reluctantly this year.  An inspection of the garden reveals some winter kill.  Not all of the plants can survive the winter all of the time, but lets wait, it’s still early.  Don’t be discouraged yet.

Rhubarb has popped it’s head up out of the soil.   In a few weeks the harvest will start.  The berry patch is looking good and weeding is on the “to do” list.  Little sparrows look for good nesting sites and the chorus of their song, welcomes spring.  Finally!  The Earth awakens from her slumber and with this, the grey days pass.

“Come out!”  calls the brilliant sunshine. ” Come to play in the warm sunshine!  Come to see the beautiful new world.  Come to investigate the returning wild.  Come out!  Come out!  Don’t stay inside.  You’ll miss this glorious day!”

Spring brings with it a new array of activity.  The garden, with it’s earthly delights, fragrance, bird songs, color, delectable food.  This spells work in the garden, choose your seeds, get ready to plant.  The fruit trees are blooming, food is on its way.

After a long winter of rations, eating last years harvest, the fresh rhubarb looks so good.  A few more weeks and this can be eaten.  Perhaps a new recipe this year.  The dandelions are starting to flower and the fresh new shoots are a perfect salad.  I won’t weed these this year.  Instead, I’ll let the flowers grow and harvest them for my dinner.  Bread and muffins, salad and tea and survival.  This is the gift of the harvest, straight from the great planet.   Eat and enjoy, for this is sustenance and we gather it.

http://www.grouprecipes.com/68395/pemican.html  Pemican

In years gone by, when the country was new, survival was the key to colonialism.  Like hibernating wildlife, overwintering and surviving in the great white north, was the most imperative topic of the day.  How do we survive?  Adaptation and skills, training and education.  As humans, we can’t curl up in a warm, winters den and sleep the cold away.  Preparation and planning,  storage, cut wood.  A humble cabin, an oasis in the wilderness.  Warm, small,dry.  It’s yours!

Written by Dr. Louise Hayes

May 13, 2018

The Mighty River Flows

The Mighty River Flows

Hail Brave hearts

Yes, it’s here, the spring has arrived, in snowy, blustery style,  In like a lion, with  heavy snow falls, March has ended the winter with a cold snap, that keeps us bundled up and happy.  Of course, the summer will eventually come, but now the trails are white.  The forest floor is covered, a late spring, with no drought in sight.

The itch is on, to turn the seasons, pull out the canoe and test the current.  Ice flows passing with the water as the melting winter turns to spring.  Catch us in our history, as we wave farewell to winter, the icy highways turn to melt waters and the dangerous ice flows temp.  No  more the sleighs to speed us along the slippery, white rivers, now it’s canoes and boats and water craft, to take our time away.

Go back, fine fellows, to days gone by, to times of yesteryear.  To the fur trade and the brave at heart the times of the voyageur.  A dangerous time of year, this is, when winter turns to spring.  The trails are wet, the rivers are thin ice and the progress becomes slow.  Take a nap and wait a week, a well deserved holiday.  The harshness of this difficult time, will melt the winter away.  Soon the canoe will be laden, with supplies to take inland.  To visit with the natives and to find a brand new land.  Off come the winter fur coats, hats and mitts are stored.  Onto another adventure, to the watery highways of this world.

A well traveled route, the St. Lawrence, filled with Coureur de Bois.  One of the most dangerous occupations of that lifetime, to travel, explore and trade in the great unknown wild.

http://www.patrimoine-culturel.gouv.qc.ca/rpcq/detail.do?methode=consulter&id=25887&type=pge     Trois Riviers, Quebec

The canoes are large enough, they carry several men.  All trained and skilled in many ways, to tackle the obstacle at hand.  Come from far away, in European style, to make a living the hard way, adventure, in the Canadian wild.  A fearsome, mighty river, the St. Lawrence is cracking up.  Pretty soon, it will be show time, pack your bags and liven up.  No more naps or holidays, the spring torrents are flooding.  It’s an adventure too dangerous for us,  spring break up is not even for the daring.  Icy flows and chilly woes, we’ll wait for another day.  This is not the best of times, for watery, river play.

But if you were an itchy voyageur, with bills at home to pay, perhaps the tempting season, would  cast him adrift anyway.

A lovely camping trip, with lakes and rivers to follow, the Canadian rivers of highway, still bind us to our past.  Traditions of camping and canoeing, following well traveled routes.  Today, we love this great wild land and praise the nations splendor.  Our ancestors did a very fine job, of protecting and implementing the heritage that we covet today.  A land of unspoiled wonder, with historical routes to travel.  This is our fine country we still travel in style.  From winter sleigh to summer canoe, the adventure has never left us.

written by Dr.  Louise Hayes

April 18, 2018

Northern Ontario Canoe Trip,  The Nat River

 https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=G6ie5jptrgY
How The West Was Won – The Canadian Way

How The West Was Won – The Canadian Way

Hail Brave hearts

Come and explore with me.  Come  into the adventure of your lives.  There’s no time to waste, the days are passing.  Make a plan, make several plans.  Learn and strive, push your limits.  Take the time to prepare.  Healthy food, proper clothing, skills, companions, strong bodies and strong minds.  Into the unknown, you travel.

A sketchy route has been marked on a page. Lines and drawings, hopefully familiar.  A post is the site marker, a mountain range on the left, stay on the river and follow the trail.  Animal tracks cover the ground.  The new fallen snow is heavy and trail breaking is hard.  Persevere, for today’s travel distance is long.  Fortunately the terrain is gentle,  rolling uphill but not too difficult to climb.  Somewhere out here is a cabin for us.  We can rest in shelter and escape the wind and the cold, then push on.  It’s a better trip than it used to be, before the route through the country was found, before the explorers and before the map makers.  Now we have a plan to follow.  The bleak, cold winter closes in, but we chose this life.  We are  homesteaders, looking for our land.

Land!  There’s plenty of land!  But ours is still a long way off and we persist in our travel.  A trading post is lurking close by.  Stay on the trail and follow it closely.  We need supplies.  Supplies and a place to rest, some warmth and some shelter, food and a hot drink.  We chose this life.  Come on.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fort_Edmonton_Park

Come on, brave hearts, a new life is calling.  The freedom it brings will be worth all of the pain.  The hardship, the struggle, the will to survive.  Keep at it.  Don’t stop.  The winter is a good time for travel.  As cold as it is, the path is easier, travel along the rivers and frozen lakes.  It’s relatively flat and easier to see, it’s cold, but faster and we cover more land.

What is now just sport is survival to us.  The dogs must run and we are grateful.  Fast and steady they hurry along.  The dog team runs and they seem to know the way.  Skills and training, education, courses, work and labor to learn these skills.  All to become homesteaders in a land offering freedom, survival, a chance to choose for ourselves and a chance to be autonomous.  But it’s work and we have now traveled so far.  Out to the west to settle these lands.  Push on, push on, the day if fading.  Run you fabulous dogs!  Take us away to our world awaiting.  To trading posts and teepees, to waterways and farmland.  Take us to our destiny, our hearts are soaring.  The cold winters wind, howls beside us, but go on.  On to our home, to farming and prosperity.  Come on, you good dogs, run forever, transport us across Canada, open the way and save us again.

written by Dr. Louise Hayes

March 19, 2018

dog sledding competition in Russia.  What was used hundreds of years ago to open up Canada is now international sport.

Winter Horse Races

Winter Horse Races

Hail Brave hearts

Enjoy the best, the wilds of winter put us to the test.  It’s dog sledding and snow shoes, skis and skates.  It’s winter camping and bonfires, with marshmallows and  hot chocolate.  It’s fireside in the cabin, cozy and warm, it’s darkness and quiet and wild winter storms.  The winter, at it’s best is the season of chill, with ice, frost, snow and wild winter storms to combat.  The fireside beckons, it calls us to be warm, come into this fine cabin to avoid the winter’s storm.  The cold winter’s icy blast, it makes our hearts sing, to have another snowfall, we’re blessed with these fun things.

Another invention, of horses and riders, take us back to our history of early colonial times.  A Quebec invention, horses, they say, becomes a competition of horse races in the winter.  Ride, you awesome champions, skilled and daring, mount your fine steeds for a flight along the icy river.  A unique experience in horsemanship and breeding, the new stock of racehorse was a special adaptation that kept it’s footing on the ice of the river.  A gaming day, to enjoy the sport, pull up your chair in minus temperatures and spend the day outside enjoying the show.

It’s early colonial times in Quebec, but this is Canada, after all.  Making the most of what life gives us, chilly cold, snow, ice and fun and the adventure of it all.

To be in a colony, so far away, from a homeland so remote, it lives in yesterday.  The future is dependent on the survival skills of all, fight off the loneliness, the questions, the gloom of despair.  Come out of your lodging, bring your chair.  Have fun in the winter, dress warmly and with layers.  Come out and enjoy this, we love it this way, with horses and snow and ice and sleigh.  Come sing, with high spirits, chase off the dark.  Enjoy this day of racing, gaming, and fun in the winter.

http://www.walkerswest.com/History/CanadianPacer.htm

The cold, the isolation, the small numbers of people, but tireless energy and determination to survive, to win at the odds of feeling cast aside.  Gather together, all you peoples, in community and spirit, chase away the dangers of illness and fear.  The numbers are still small, but we’re getting used to our lives, of hardship, deprivation, thrift and careful counting.  Make sure your larder will last until the next harvest.

Inventions are a must,  stretch your minds.  Think of something new, to make us better people.  We’re changing out here in a colony so rustic.  We’re becoming a people of our own.

Don’t look back, look forward, prepare and plan.  Become the genius we all know you can.  Invent the horse, play games anyway, invent your recipes, plan your stay.  The colony is forever, we can’t give it up, so make the most of it, live well, drink from this cup.  It’s a warm winter’s day, time for some fun, head off to the river to enjoy the race.

Written by Dr. Louise Hayes

February 21, 2018

The Horse Drawn Sleigh

Hail brave hearts

From long ago, in our glorious past, a sled was born, to slide the winter blues away.  No more trudging through the snow, the sleigh gave birth to a new kind of day.  Winter wonderland once more, the land was conquered by man and animal.  Teams of horses, teams of dogs, led the way across the snow.  The brilliant, glittery, fluffy stuff is part of our fun filled days.  Oh for a ride on a horse, but instead an open sleigh.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sled

A team of powerful animals, groomed and trained in draft, quickly become our glorious present, from an inspiring past.  The sleigh will take you places that you always want to go.  Mostly over hill and dale and always through the snow.  This romantic lifestyle beacons to us, come to join the ride.  A wagon in the summer, in winter  a sleigh to rush and glide.  The winter is upon us, a favorite of seasons no doubt.  Along the windy, snowy path, the horses and the sled pull out.  The jingle of the bells, their harness is gleaming with polish.  We hear their music in the air and smile and run to the road.  A wave at the passing sleigh, filled with tourists delighting their day.  A pleasant reminder of days gone by, when horse and sleigh were the mode of transportation.   Now in the eve of wintertime, when the solstice quietly passes.  The winter is here already, get out and join the masses.

 

 

 written by Dr. Louise Hayes
December 22, 2017
A Man’s Best Friend

A Man’s Best Friend

Hail brave hearts.

Your company is here!  Fast and furry, friendly and happy, this is your very best friend.  Your dog is your companion for life.  Easy to care for, easy to please, all they want is a warm home, to be fed, and to be included in all of your life.  We have nurtured the companionship of dogs for a long, long time.

A trainable friend, a fiercely loyal companion, a lovable pet, your dog is a strongly supportive part of your life and your family.  Train him to do whatever he can, fetch a ball, play with sticks, swim in the lake, take a walk, guard the premises, guard you, pull your sleigh, be your business, own the  company, take him wherever you can.  This is not just a pet, this is a big part of the family.  This is the pet that can be your eyes, alert you to danger, pull you to safety.  This is the pet that can be trained to be a working dog, taking care of the disabled, protecting the property, protecting the people.  This is the pet that lives for you, you are all of his life and it can be a wonderfully fulfilling time of mutual companionship.  Take the dog for a walk, to play in the park, to stroll down the street, to meet your friends.  This is an important part of his day.  A little fresh air, some exercise, the walk will do  both of you some good.

Dogs are with us in history, helping us to build a nation.  Sled dogs carrying people and supplies, opening trade and transportation routes, bringing people together in a sparsely populated country, where no roads had gone before.  Great explorers like David Thompson, used the sled dog to carry him across the country,  adventuring and exploring along the way.

 

 

Train the dog to be a part of a team, pulling the sled, running for joy.  Most dogs welcome the activity of a good run and the dog team is a companion sport, dogs and humans in the cold winter time, speeding across the countryside together in a sleigh.  It’s an age old sport of Canadian history.  Run the dog team to an adventure, to exploration, to connect to one another.  It’s an unusual and clever idea, to hitch a dog to the sleigh, run him over to the neighbors farm, over hill and over dale, running through the snow.  The fast, light dogs enjoy this too.  They can run for hours through the snow.  Winter coats and hats, boots and pants, pull on your warm attire.  The season of winter fun is here.

This is a sport that you might want to try, just to experience the historical culture of the nation.  Imagine being the master of a dog team, sliding along in the wintry chill, sled piled high with trading goods, to sell at your next stop.  How far will it be today?  20 kilometers only, or maybe an all day stint, rushing through the forest, sliding across the lake, the trade routes are open, come out all of you, to experience the skills  that a life like this  would take.

written by Dr. Louise Hayes

December 17, 2017

Multicultural You

Multicultural You

Hail Bravehearts

A brave new day, a brilliant country, a national holiday, a celebration of pride, joy and togetherness.  This great nation, molded and blended, nurtured and cherished.  A great Canada, a fabulous notion, a clever and brilliant place.  Multicultural you, with freedoms and rights.  The freedom to live without violence, to live in neighbourly contact with people of different nationalities, the right to live without arms and to protect yourselves, keeping your community safe and secure..

The laws protect our culture but still frees us from oppression.  No tyrants or dictators, to enslave us.  The contract with the people is peace among us, no cultural quarrels or religious disputes.  An age old negotiation that protected these rights, have been handed down and protected, for hundreds of years.  Multicultural Canada, with its birth in French and English culture, both completely different, yet somehow it works.  Hammer out the contract, write the laws, guarantee the freedom.  The evolving wisdom of ages past, becomes the fulfilling society of our present.  Strong and united, the worlds peoples share this land.  From ancient aboriginal ways to the escaping refugee, the weave of a mosaic of multicultural heritage enhances our lives, gives us richness in people and culture and ingrains an intelligence of peace among us.  United in freedom, mutual caring, the sharing of this country is our shining past, our fabulous present and our brilliant future.

We are unique in our history.  A land of harsh and somewhat unconquerable climate, of difficult terrain and a short growing season.  A majestic land of wild forests and tumbling rivers, of curious peoples and language barrier.  Still, the nation was won through negotiation and peace, love and marriage, barter and exchange.  The cultures blend, learn and accept, we are all different, we are all one.  Our wise past is still our present, still our future, still our bright and shining star.  That star that guides us and beckons us to follow, into your unique and inspiring country.  Into your fellowship and merciful negotiation, into the nation of democratic law and democratic peace.

Hail, oh Canada, as the years roll by and the world changes, the battles die and the wars subside, into your dreams of international peace, where all peoples live under the shelter of laws of freedom.  Peaceful freedom, oh multicultural you.  Write your songs, sing your hearts out, brilliant praises to our national cause.

written by Dr. Louise Hayes

July 8, 2016