Meeting with a Friend

Image: Ken’s new Cromach.

Another first for us here – we just met with an old friend from Prince Rupert who was traveling down to Victoria.  Being so far off grid, it can be hard to schedule meetings with people, particularly as the Johnstone Strait crossing can be so weather dependent.  It’s also rare that any of our friends from Prince Rupert are coming down to the Island.  So we were “doubly blessed” by this meeting.

Ken is a stick maker – that is, he artistically designs walking sticks from various types of wood.  Before we left Prince Rupert, Ken carved a cromach (Scot’s word meaning a staff, stave or walking stick) with a beautiful teak thistlehead handle, which he gave to our good friend, a true Scottish fellow.  The traditional cromach often has a “crook” which is carved from the horn of a blackface ram.  Ken has often admired these cromachs, but they are not available in Canada – you definitely have to make a trip to Scotland to get one.

cromach 2

Image: Cromach made by Ken.

This summer, our friend celebrated his 50th wedding anniversary in Scotland, and while there, actually was able to find a cromach with a ram’s horn handle.  So when we met up with him in Campbell River, he had a wonderful gift for Ken – a new cromach.

Enjoying a peaceful Sunday morning in a local coffee shop, we caught up on Prince Rupert news (glad I’m not there anymore) and spent awhile talking about Scotland and some of the places our friend had been to.  I’ve been to Scotland, but Ken hasn’t, and would really like to go someday.  Who knows … maybe we will.

It was a quick visit, but now that we know we can connect like this, I think we will be seeing more of our friends in the future.  And our Scottish friend is definitely interested in coming over to our home one day and seeing what we are up to. I am very happy that we are still able to keep some of our old friendships going, even if we are a bit “OTG”, as they say.

2 thoughts on “Meeting with a Friend”

  1. hello,
    I am Ed McCarter’s daughter and he sent me along to your site to see this “wee story”. What an inspiring invitation you put out there. Very best wishes with you new adventures.

    I am a PhD student in Nursing and I dream to live at least self sufficiently on rural Vancouver Island one day, perhaps working from “a desk in nature”. Your story is inspiring, thank you.
    Abbie Hain

    1. Hi Abbie:
      I hope that you too will be able to follow your dream! We are both very happy to have made the choices that we did and are now living in such a wonderful place!

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