Saturday, January 2, 2010

New Year's at GopherBroke Farm

I have written quite a few times about visits to the GopherBroke Farm and the great fun I always have when I visit.  As I prepare to return from this most recent visit, I am in great spirits as this visit was no different.  It has been a great 3 days up here in the winter wonderland.  Tomorrow, when I prepare to get back to reality and routine next week, I will do so with happy spirits and thoughts of gratitude for all the dear friends I have.

It has become a tradition that I celebrate the New Year with Barb and John and the circle of friends  known as "The Gang of Eight" who all live in the Grey Bruce area near my Collingwood Shangri-La.  This group, of which I am the honourary  9th member, has been having get togethers for some number of years and so are a cozy and comfortable lot.   Barb and John  have in recent years hosted a New Years party and I always take advantage of this opportunity for an extended visit.

This year, we had the addition of another Blue Mountain acquaintance of Barb and John's who also joined us at last year's party.  The evening started a bit later as folks arrived, but no one seemed to be watching the clock, satisfied with lots of nibblies and chat whilst we waited for the assembly.  As the evening marched on we sat around a comfortably large elegantly set table for 10 and ate a fabulous meal (to which all had contributed), quaffed our favourite beverages and enjoyed the intelligent, witty, kind and comfortable companionship of friends.  The conversations were both fun and interesting and the evening, accompanied by great deal of food (particularly desserts) made it a perfect way to start a year.   We were just finishing dessert, still sitting at the dinner table, when the New Year rolled around and the traditional bubbly poured for toasts and we sang out the old year and welcomed 2010.

A perfect way to bring in the New Year!

Yesterday Barb and I went to visit an elderly friend of hers, who lives on a farm about 8 or 9 kilometers from GopherBroke.  I have blogged about visits to Beba's farm previously and it seems that the long New Year's day walk and visit is also becoming a tradition.   We had done the New Years Day walk to Beba's farm last year also.  It has been snowing lightly for a few days and the 2 hour walk, while a bit cold with  a bitter wind, was a great opportunity to walk and talk with Barb and catch up on all sorts of stuff.  Barb and I plan to do the Pilgrim's Walk -  the Camino - in Spain next year and we chatted happily about what we needed to do throughout the year in preparation for the trek in 2011.

As mentioned in the earlier blog, Beba, at 81, is as spry and clear headed as either Barb or I.   I always enjoy visiting this sharp tongued and quick witted lady who is fiercely independent and quite obviously happy with where she is and what she has.  Visiting her reminds me that life in old age does not necessarily have to be one of infirmary and dependence.  She is a model for both Barb and I.  We had a great visit.  John joined us later by car and brought the dogs and dinner (there was enough left overs from our New Year's party to feed an army).  We had decided not to walk with the dogs - it really is a bit far for my little Bell'a short legs and the snow tends to turn into snow balls stuck onto the ends of her feet during a long walk in new snow.  Gibson, Barb and John's dog, is getting on in age and hard of hearing and we worried about keeping him out of the way of any cars which might zoom by.  So the dogs were left behind to join us later when John came along.   Beba has two dogs and the cutest kitten, and I believe enjoyed the animal visitors as much as the human visitors.  We ate, drank and were merry a 2nd night running - although at an earlier hour!  What a great time we had.

So sad that this blog has to be without the pictures.   I am internet challenged at the moment and have just waited 1 hour for photos to upload via 3G and have given up on it.    There is no internet at GopherBroke Farm and sadly, I am without at home at the moment also.  I have recently switched internet providers and due to a scheduling mix up am without both internet and cable until Jan 7th.  Tethering my iPhone to my laptop seems not good enough for uploading photos.  So come back next weekend and I will have added some nice photos to the blog.  I have some spectacular winter wonderland pictures to share!  Lots of white fluffy powdery snow at GopherBroke farm - and of course at Blue Mountain for all the Ontario skiers.

Such was my New Year's celebrations.  It is my sincere hope that you and yours had as  great an evening and New Year's day as I did!

Please note that due to my internet challenges I will not be posting again until Thurs Jan 7th.  I think blogs without pictures can be fairly boring - so I will save posts until after my new service gets connected.

Happy New Year friends!

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