Community is everything

As you know, we live remote.  Not so remote as to NOT have neighbours but remote enough that you can’t see ’em and only a few reside within a few miles (see pic).  In previous writings, I have opined that there is less than one person per square mile (over 250 square miles) and most people live with others (i.e. family) so there are many, many square miles uninhabited….the way it should be. In winter, the population drops precipitously.  We live remote all year but it FEELS way more so in winter.

Naturally, we modern-style OTG’ers all travel to town at some point and, despite being independent and different from one another (in so many ways), we all share a few things in common, most visibly, the community dock.  Whether you live on an island ten miles to the west, ten miles to the north or just ten miles away on the same island as I do, you use the community dock on the nearest ‘connected’ island which is our first ‘leg’ of re-entry to the grid, the city, the big-box-stores and the madding crowd. Most people use it – on average – once a month.  Do the math: 250 people, 30 days…roughly 8 boats on the dock per day.  In reality, it is more like 3 or 4 but, at busy times, it can be as much 15 or more.

We left for Victoria last week and quickly re-entered the larger madness.  What a treat that was.

Because remote taxpayers do not get much in the way of amenities or services, we are all pleased as punch with the community dock (a joint community – local government project).  Only a few short years ago, there was no dock.  There was, instead, just a community raft.  A floating raft-dock that tipped and rolled when anyone was on it served as the ‘landing’ for accessing the ‘connected island’.  That raft might accommodate two or three boats in a pinch.  The would-be shopper would tie up, then pull the raft into shore, step on land and then pull the raft back out using a clothesline-like device.

You can imagine the improvement the new dock is over that!  But, here’s the deal: because as many as sixteen boats could conceivably congregate on a heavy weekend or for a special event in town, rules were developed and one of them is that no-one can leave their vessel tied up for more than 48 hours.  That amount of time allows for an extensive town day with, perhaps, a weather-delayed return overnight allowance day.  But, if you are going to knowingly be away for more than two days, it is incumbent on the user to find a ride to get over to the dock and arrange for a ride to come back so that your vessel does not occupy valuable dock space.

Good manners also suggest that your ride over/back with the considerate neighbour does NOT oblige them to help you with your load.  They all will, of course, but we usually load our car the day prior to leaving and make sure that we are taxi-service-only coming back.

When we leave for any amount of time, we are carrying luggage, any garbage to be recycled, any returns of products, mechanical devices requiring professional repair, containers, totes and the like.  We often go to town with 200 pounds or more of crap.

Coming back, of course, is a bigger chore.  Typically we return with in excess of 500 pounds of crap.  This trip: about average.  Some of it is packaging, the aforementioned totes and luggage but the bulk is consumables of some sort, food, lumber, parts, fuel, etc.  Usually, a good portion is also fragile.  This trip we brought a couple boxes of wine and a pane of glass (and eggs).  The only limit to what we can carry is the size of the SUV and the boat.  Fortunately, it is about the same amount.

We also have a utility trailer that has, on occasion, been filled as well but that means two boat trips at the very least and we are pleased to have left those days mostly behind us.  One major schlep is enough.

This trip, our pre-arranged ride-neighbour got the days mixed up and we were destined to arrive at the dock with no transportation ready (see forlorn expression above).  That can be problematic.  So a few last-minute calls to the outer regions and we were handled.  D was available after 2:00 and G was available before 2:00.  Whenever we knew for sure what our arrival time was, we would let them know and one of them would be there. We called G and said, “1:00 pick-up, if you please.”

At 1:01, she was right there tying up her boat at the community dock.  AND she had brought our boat (towed behind) with her.  New Yorkers can’t get taxis that efficiently.

So, what is the point of this blog?  There isn’t one, really.  Just a day in the life….that kinda thing.  But it is interesting to note that our ‘neighbours’ as distant and disparate as they can be are quickly at the ready to help. It’s a good community.


23 thoughts on “Community is everything

    • Thanks. Personally, I considered that post just ordinary OTG stuff (I know; ostensibly the purpose of the blog)…..but didn’t you REALLY want more politics? More Weinstein? More Trump?


    • Thanks. But, personally, I was thinking it was just an ordinary, everyday OTG blog (the main reason for writing, I admit). Don’t you REALLY want more Weinstein? More Trump? More rants?


      • Both really. The day today of Sally and Dave are always much anticipated. But we like your take on Judge Roy Moore, running for the US Senate and the allegations made by four women


      • Well, I hate Roy Moore but he is as protected as any of them…INNOCENT until proven guilty. Keyword: PROVEN. Call me a liberal but I am very much FOR at the very least due process when it comes to ruining a person for life. And none of this Moore stuff or, for that matter, any of it regarding others has been proven. DUE PROCESS is a basic requirement before punishment in my books.
        Wait till Act Two: THE LAWSUITS. And they will come……but you knew I would say that……right?
        What I do NOT understand is why there are so few voices saying this? Lawyers and judges should be bellowing this…..there should be a chorus demanding this.
        And the other thing I do not understand is how we can condemn both a bum pat and a rape by the same name: assault.
        And, what about the stupid woman who chimed in her ‘me too’ because Louis CK allegedly masturbated over the phone at her? Like, duh? Hang up already……..
        It is getting crazier and crazier…..


  1. There is more to the CK story out there including his admission about these incidents. The differences are a matter of law and are easily checked. CK in part said his actions were an exercise of power. Many persons in Canadian society are deemed to be in a position of power or a position or authority and in those case consent is not a defence for any type of assault. Also harassment is illegal, a BC man was sentenced today to three years in prison for harassing his ex-wife. Slander is also illegal but the challenge is proving it. Yes, innocent til proven guilty. But if no charges are laid or the police say there is not enough evidence to lay a charge then the fall back position is to make claims in the social media. The accused under law remains innocent but experiences trial by social meme. Many persons in Canada, are being blocked from social media for making false claims. Contrary to common belief, Canada does not have free speech. We do not have the same protections as Americans do under their Constitution. One will not be hearing from Canadian judges on these issues unless they have a judgement to render.


      • Whew! For a minute there every man reading this was nervous…(all two of us) mind you, when it comes to harassment, the genders truly are equal. Think: Honey, Do! SEXUAL harassment, however, may bemostly in the male domain……..
        Hmmmm….could saying “No, I have a headache” be construed as harassment to the ears of the horny?


      • I assume that harassment by social meme might bring a charge in Canada. But in the US it seems that false accusations are covered by free speech.


  2. I don’t know….I go back to what I said….it’s all crazy. It’s pure madness. I read up on Roy Moore and, despite the pathetic interview with Hannity, the guy is claiming ‘it was 40 years ago, it does NOT fit my behaviour pattern, I do NOT even know two of them, I just don’t remember…and so on…..and he is RIGHT. Who (male or female) can remember those details from 40 years ago unless something catastrophic occurred and, by their own admission, he mostly just tried to kiss ’em. Plus – is ‘tryin’ to kiss ’em’ a crime? This is all very, very sick…..


      • Just as well. I am sure it was, at the very least, naughty in the extreme! Why not just tar and feather yourself now? Get it over with? Mea culpa yourself to getting a get-out-of-jail card BEFORE they come for you. Think ahead of the slavering pack of dogs…..


  3. He was 32 years of age and she was 14 years of age. He worked in the Alabama Attorney General’s office. He will not be charged because the statue of limitations has expired. His extreme political views on transgendered persons leave him vulnerable.


  4. I think his admission that he had dated teenaged girls in his thirties might not hurt his reputation which was harmed when he suggested that 911 was punishment for the US turning away from God. He said God’s law was supreme. His words have an attraction to his base but many Americans disagree with him. He has many disqualifing actions on his record. Now we have one more.


  5. ‘’But does it matter?” Well some will vote in the full knowledge that their choice of candidate is a selfish scofflaw who as an adult dated underaged girls. But many in our society expect an elected person to be willing to follow the laws of the land.


    • I know what you are saying but, like many people, I do not expect much good from any politician. I know that is wrong, cynical, jaded and, in a way, self-fulfilling, but so many politicians disappoint, we are almost GLAD to discover that their major flaw is merely sexual in nature or, perhaps, just drinking while driving or maybe cheating on their expenses. You may recall much-loved Mayor Ralph Klien the very-flawed and pickled politician who went on to run the province as their premier. And don’t forget good ol’ drug-taking Rob Ford of Toronto. How’s about ol’ take-it-while-you-can Duffy, the Conservatives shill, while in senate. Dinjta jus’ love him? At the very least, we expect our politicians to pad their bills, hire their family, exploit every allowance and even have off-shore tax havens so that they don’t have to pay the taxes they deem we have to pay. Hell, even Trump said, “I don’t pay taxes ’cause I’m smart!”
      So, really, does it matter? Better put: WILL IT MATTER in a state somewhat renown for inbreeding? “Well, hell, son! ‘Least he wasn’t trying to hump kinfolk.”


  6. Awesome post…. I like the off grid posts… i can relate them to our lives here…. I am sick of hearing about all the other ugliness.. I honestly don’t know how I will last the whole four years of him…
    The guy who developed our island built a community dock for just the reasons you mention.. individual docks are pretty much non existent here. If you are ever lonely just head to the dock. there is always someone coming or going…. Although this time of year, maybe not so much… we are down to about twenty one residents for the winter.


  7. The lake is about the same, a few people come to their cabins to check on them after a major storm, but most don’t. Lots can happen in the winter with high water and low water issues not to mention the wind. We enjoy hearing and watching the logging boats go up and down. The early crew goes by starting at 5:45 and the last pass by at about 6:30. Boats going to the head of the lake take longer (for the big ones probably about 45-an hour. The other major logging dock is only about 30 minutes away from town. It pretty dark then so all we can see is their light, hear their motors and feel their wakes. – Margy


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