Over The Back Fence

May 11th, 2018 | By | Category: Over The Back Fence

Volunteer Profile…

The Hub, as it’s commonly known, has been serving the public in what is now Mississippi Mills and beyond, for more than forty years. Donated clothing, furniture and small appliances have brought in many thousands of dollars, which is then poured back into the community.

Run by volunteers who devote hours and hours working at sorting, pricing and making sure everything is in good condition, it is a busy place.

One of the volunteers who devotes her time to the Hub is Laura Douglas, who has been involved for five years.  Her job is to look over the sorted items to make sure they are clean and not damaged, and ready for sale.

Douglas’s volunteer role in Almonte doesn’t stop there. She took part in the Hub Hospice Walk, sells daffodils for the Cancer Society, has been a recognized face at the Almonte Hospital, where she served snacks to the patients in the evenings. And as a cancer survivor herself, volunteered as the co-ordinator for patients who needed transportation to treatments at the Cancer Clinic in Ottawa. Douglas is a current member of both the Almonte Horticulture Society and Almonte United Church.

Eloise Caverson, President of the Almonte Community Co-ordinators told Y@H that Laura is a dedicated volunteer, and has also talked her sister into being part of the workforce that keeps the Hub running. “Laura is a very valuable part of our volunteering community in Almonte, and we are very grateful for all that she does at the Hub.”

Y@H congratulates Laura on her dedication to the many worthy causes she has engaged in over the years.

Remember When …

Travellers visiting Scotland, will usually have going to Loch Ness high on their priority list of places to visit. After all, they may be among the chosen few who have witnessed an unusual stir of water revealing a life-like monster believed to be the Loch Ness Monster.

Turn the pages back to May 2, 1933. Although the legend had been around for more than 1,500 years, on that day, the Inverness Courier reported an account of a local couple who claimed to have seen the monster, and described it as rolling around and plunging on the surface.

A year later, a photographer vowed the picture he had taken was indeed of the famous, but illusive monster, surfacing the water with a long neck and ominous in appearance.

It was speculated that “Nessie” as it became known, was indeed the solitary survivor of the long extinct plesiosaurs. Since then, many stories have emerged about sightings, but “Nessie” remains as illusive as ever.

Who Said What …

“How can there be peace without people understanding each other, and how can this be, if they don’t know each other?’’  

… Lester B. Pearson, 1957

Funny You Should Ask

Q: Often while out driving the highways and byways, I see signs posted that say “NO ENGINE BRAKES.” What does that mean, and for whom are the signs posted?

A: We asked Brad Cherry of Bean Chevrolet Buick GMC for an answer.  This is what he told us about these signs, which are usually found approaching small hamlets, residential areas, and places like golf clubs.

They are for large trucks, semis, dump trucks and tractor trailers. These large vehicles often use jake brakes, which causes compression of the engine to help slow down the vehicle. When using that method to help slow down the vehicle, engines and exhausts make a very, very loud noise, and can be very disturbing to the communities mentioned above. (Might even cause an avid golfer to miss a putt).

When these signs are posted, the trucks are obligated to use their regular brake systems, which are not as responsive or effective as their engine brakes.

The Farm Scene

Although the Ontario Government has given the go ahead to eleven new natural gas projects for rural communities, all of the $100 million dollars is going to Northern rural and First Nations Communities. Many Eastern Ontario farmers will have to wait a bit longer to get natural gas, which would drastically reduce their operating costs now sky-high because of the exorbitant costs of hydro.

Farmers in this region who are lucky enough to be on a main highway do have natural gas, however, the residents who happens to be located on a road off the main thoroughfare, in most cases, are out of luck.

Hydro costs for local farmers has been crippling, and even though they are pleased the government is planning natural gas lines in Northern Communities, they would like to see some of that $100 million
dollars directed to Eastern Ontario.

A recent release from the Ontario Federation of Agriculture (OFA) notes that rural Ontario has been hardest hit by energy inflation where farmers have to rely on electricity, propane or heating oil for energy.

Keith Currie, President of the OFA says, “We’ve crunched the numbers and we’ve shown them to the government. An annual investment by the government of $75 million over 20 years would see more than $1 billion dollars in annual savings for Ontarians. That’s money that could be reinvested in local rural communities.”

This month in History

In May 1999, the venerable Eaton’s department store chain hired an investment banker to “evaluate its strategic alternatives.’’ The action effectively meant the company was up for sale after being a Canadian retailing icon for more than a century.

Where Is It Now? 

Canada’s First Newspaper

The country’s first newspaper was the Halifax Gazette and since September 2002, a copy of its first edition has been part of the National Library’s rare books collection in Ottawa.

The debut edition of the newspaper appeared on March 23, 1752, with an editorial by publisher John Bushnell apologizing to subscribers for failing to launch the broadsheet paper on time.

The newspaper was repatriated in 2002 after almost a year of negotiations with the Massachusetts Historical Society.  It’s a single sheet newspaper, “yellowed and tattered with age,’’ according to a story in the Ottawa Citizen, but still perfectly legible.

The newspaper was purchased for $40,000 and can be viewed online at www.nlc-bnc.ca/halifaxgazette/index-e.html

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