Fall tour

Each year, since I have moved from Fergus, my former stomping grounds, I have managed to get back there for a visit for a couple of days.

This year was no exception, thanks to a longtime friend who not only billets me but chauffeurs me to wherever I should so want to go.

The main attraction that led me to go at this particular time of year was not the coloured leaves that we could see while we traversed, though they were certainly the icing on the cake. The attraction this year, as in the past, was the 13th annual appearance of Bob Milne’s Ragtime featured at the Century Church Theatre in Hillsburgh.

Bob is a self-taught ragtime piano player who plays by ear many of the real old oldies that were written, or as he says, pounded out in the ill repute roadhouses that existed clear across the country below the 49th parallel during the tail-end years of the 19th century. During short breaks, Bob would narrate the possible history of each rendition. If you have not seen this man play, then mark your calendar for next year – it is an education in itself.

The second want to visit on my not written list was a quaint little restaurant on Mill Street in Elora. It operates under the self-explanatory name of Café Creperie and is owned by Jacques Dion. We had not been back there for quite some time, as a matter of fact several years, but Jacques’ memory equals that of an elephant, and he welcomed us with open arms, stating, “Where have you been?” As well as, “I read your article every week!”

The simplicity, cleanliness, and subtle décor of this open kitchen eating place create an ambiance that can be felt in no other setting, and being greeted, waited on, and served by the chef and owner who chats, explaining each item served, can be beaten by no other. If you have never taken the time to stop in for lunch and chat with Jacques, then all I can say is you have not yet appreciated life. What are you waiting for?

In addition to shopping for some heavier winter clothing, we took the pleasure of dropping in to I Love Chocolate. This is an addictive must each time I go to Fergus. I gain two pounds just thinking about it; nevertheless, it gives me an opportunity to pick up a few gifts to give in thanks to friends and neighbours who have, over the years, done me many favours. I don’t think anyone ever turns down chocolates.

Back home at Westwind Farms, I had a little surprise when I entered the barn to talk to the animals. There, but not surprising as similar rescues have happened before, were three more heads looking at me over the stall doors that securely held them.

The first was a sage-coloured mare that nickered a “hello” greeting to me. I guesstimated her age at about seven or eight, though appearing in reasonable health, her condition showed a need for more feed and grooming. In a couple of stalls down further, I could see a double set of large ears pointing in my direction. Yes, as you probably guessed, there were two llamas, a male and female. They, too, just need some TLC. Though we know little about them now, they will get what they need, when they need it, here at Westwind Farms, where the animals are fed before breakfast.

Take care, ‘cause we care.


Barrie Hopkins