Tuesday, September 13, 2016

So Many Eyes

As I continue my stories about our trip to Mishkeegogang this August, I feel it important to say that these reflections are limited to my point of view. There were 15 pairs of eyes on this trip, each with a unique perspective. Seven belonged to young people, eyes wide open, some belonged to adults who had never been on a First Nations reserve before, and some of us came with history and learning under our belts, but always learning more.

I am sure that each person could share their own interesting impressions and epiphanies and I wish you could read a broader cross section of these perspectives here. For now, though, it's my personal viewpoint and not the definitive story of the Mish trip. In visiting Mish on the web, I just discovered a fact that I did not know, and that is that it is halfway between two oceans, which you can see at the bottom of the page reached by clicking here!

About 12 hours after the journey began for those of us who flew, the long grey road from Ignace led us to signs that heralded Mishkeegogamang First Nation. Sudden energy filled each vehicle as we turned right at the corner onto Sandy Road, and peered out--our first sight of Mish. 

Sandy Road is about 4 kilometers or so long and is a bendy hill, that takes you from the community centre, past houses lining either side of the road, and eventually reaches Missabay School. 

 We passed the remnants of a burned out house, a chilling sight. We learned later, that when it caught fire there was no one home, thank God. All too often that is not the case and too many children and adults have died in house fires, something I wrote about here, For Serenity and Neesh, two years ago.

Pretty soon we had a canine welcoming committee/escort.

 The Burston name is immortalized in Mish, with our very own bend in the road--Burston's Bend. We were so honoured to see the sign still proudly up--with its warning to "proceed with caution," something Peter Burston neglected to do the year before, and learned to his everlasting embarrassment how not to navigate a hairpin bend, with a full truck. Image result for peter burston

 The first sight of the school that was to be our home for the next week, as evening drew in.

 The view from the school, that changes in every light, going from glory to glory.

Our friend, Kendra, who had ordered a Big Mac and coffee from Thunder Bay, and didn't care that it was cold. She taunted friends in the community with photos of her prizes!
I have more to tell about our first evening in Mish, but I'm going to stop here and post this for now. At least we are "there!"


Susan said...

I am amazed at how the emotion of our joyous arrival back "home" and the anticipation of the adventure that was to unfold in the ensuing days is washing over me as your words and photos take me right back there. :) Thanks so much for this... Can't wait for the rest of the chapters!

Belinda Burston said...

Susan, your enjoyment of the story makes my day!

Marilyn Yocum said...

Love all this, but especially the canine greeting committee and the sight of the overloaded trailer!

Belinda Burston said...

The dogs stole our hearts, especially one of them, who no doubt will be well known to all, very soon!It means so much that you are with us on our adventure, Marilyn.

arils and castles said...

Thanks for sharing the photos and i have to say that I love the Burston sign!

Christy said...

Just caught up on all the Mish posts this evening! Beautifully written. Such a wonderful way to keep the memories alive & fresh & close to our hearts. Thank-you, Belinda!

Belinda Burston said...

Nicole, the sign is so funny and an endless source of laughter!

Belinda Burston said...

Thank you Christy. I'm doing my best to do the impossible--capture the wonder of our trip. :)