A New Season

Tree Swing

Photo by Bev McMullen

There’s something special about autumn.

There’s a smell – a crisp, fresh feeling in the air that makes you want to take advantage of ever-shortening sunny days and chilly nights. And there’s a feeling of anticipation.

To me, fall has always represented a new start. The change of seasons brings with it the excitement of a new school year – new clothes, new teachers, new friends, new challenges.

Even though I graduated long ago, autumn 2010 still brings those new experiences my way.

As a recent transplant to Muskoka, I’m still learning the ropes at a new job and trying my hardest not to get lost on the way to work. I may not have a new locker, but new friends, clothes and challenges are never hard to find.

As for teachers, I’ve had plenty.

Captain Bruce Jamieson introduced me to the beautiful Lake of Bays. Ken and Katya Riley made me feel right at home on their farm in Milford Bay.

I learned about Muskoka’s haunted heritage (I’m not scared of my new home, I’m not scared of my new home…) and a few local personalities with more knowledge of the area than anyone I’ve ever met.

From the exquisite art of R.W. Haviland to the debate between high- and low-tech cottage experiences, this issue of Sideroads has been as interesting for me to put together as it will be for you to read.

Even though I’ve spent many a summer in cottage country, actually moving in and writing about it is a different story – literally.

So thanks for making me feel so welcomed, Muskoka. For someone who started the summer feeling like a stranger in a new school, I experienced an overwhelming amount of hospitality and small-town friendliness that was decidedly old-school. And that’s a good thing.

I look forward to bringing you all the best stories our communities have to offer – and learning much more about Muskoka in the process. Being the new girl isn’t so scary. Haunted hotels on the other hand…

SR

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