Closing the Cottage


….closing the cottage took place later than normal

Traditionally many people close their cottages on the Thanksgiving weekend in Canada. For us this year that date was pushed forward by two weeks.

Our first grandchild was due to arrive on October 4th and we wanted to be close to home when she made her way into the world. As a result we didn’t venture too far from home from October 1st on.  One week after the due date was Thanksgiving, which we spent with our daughter and the following weekend it snowed up north. Snow in mid-October is pretty rare in this part of Canada so we weren’t prepared, physically or emotionally, to drive in 15 cm of snow this early in the year.

Earlier this week we had beautiful weather and all the snow up north had melted away. We left after rush hour and made it up to the ferry dock on time, so we thought, to catch the 11:30 boat. What we didn’t know at that moment was that the schedule had been changed in early September when the kids on the island went back to school in Midland.

A nice young man came over to the car and told us that the next boat wouldn’t be for another two hours so we decided to drive back into Midland and have some lunch. We had Frances with us which meant that we had to find a place where we could eat outside. Luckily it was warm enough to do that and one of my favourite restaurants in town still had their patio tables and chairs outside on the sidewalk.

After a delicious lunch of butternut squash soup and a couple of grilled sandwiches we drove back to the ferry dock where I got out of the car and took a few photos of the surrounding area and gave the dog a little bit of exercise while we waited for the ferry to be loaded.

When we finally got to the cottage we quickly started to do what needed to be done. I stripped all the beds and bagged and stored away all the pillows and blankets. I removed all canned and bottled foods from the cupboards so that they couldn’t freeze over the winter. I removed all paper products from the counters and put them into sealed containers so that the mice that move in couldn’t shred them for bedding materials. My husband brought all the outdoor chairs and tables inside and moved and covered the barbecue. We loaded up the car with the bedding and clothes that needed washing and all the canned food. The last thing we did was board up the door so that the snow couldn’t blow in and to keep the glass window from shattering.

We took one last walk on the beach with the dog, keeping her on the least so that she didn’t go swimming. There’s nothing worse than having to drive for two hours with a wet dog unless of course that dog has been sprayed by a skunk.

We left in good time to catch the 4:00 ferry but when we got down to the loading dock we saw that the ferry was on the other side of the lake. I guess that this scheduled time had been changed as well. When the ferry got closer I could see why the time had been changed. The ferry was loaded with high school children coming home from school.

When we finally got on the ferry we were allowed to drive on, front end first, instead of backing on. What a treat! After 20 minutes on the ferry the car ride home took just over two hours.

Another great summer at Christian Island has come to an end. Thank goodness we were able to close on such a beautiful day.

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5 thoughts on “Closing the Cottage

  1. Closing a house up for the winter involves a great deal of work. So I’m stunned by what it must mean when you close down hotels for six months. Thoughts prompted by our holiday in Rhodes – somewhat warmer than either Canada of Scotland, I assume.

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