The days are long and life is short.
This is the best BLOG I’ve ever seen!
I so well remember your mother- she was my ninth grade French teacher. She was very thorough and I thought of her many times as I later became a high school teacher too.
While you may not know me, and Wendy was a grade behind me, you may remember a couple of my sisters Candice and Pam. My husband and I just moved back to Kingsville- Cedar Beach- after being away 40+ years and living all over Canada. Pam just moved back here from upstate New York 2 years ago, too. Candice is in London Ontario. And my youngest sister has a cottage near us here, so I guess the lake/town has had hooks in our family to bring us all back in some way or another.
I’m ordering your book and look forward to reading about the 50’s and 60’s from your point of view. I know I couldn’t wait to leave the small town at 18 and see the world. Kingsville was even the town my mom, Wanda Scratch, was born in! While we love it here now we were fortunate to travel and live elsewhere for many years. We can now better appreciate the relative calm of this town.
Where are you theses days? If you’re back in town anytime drop by our place on the lake at 1243 Heritage.
Hello Debbie, What a nice comment – thanks so much! Of course I remember you and the Hendersons – a wonderful family – and your parents were always charming and friendly too. You had that lovely home by the lake. Your sister, Candice, played the romantic lead in the high school play in Grade 12 – the high point of my theatrical career! I had such a big crush on her, I forgot my lines! I remember Bill as a good guy as well.
As you might infer from the write-up I posted on the Kingsville History site, I have some ambivalence regarding Kingsville history and my experience growing up there. the book’s a full-throttle critique of Kingsville and Kingsvillians from a 60s-Hippie-counter culture point-of-view, and far from everyone’s cup of tea. I tried to be as honest about my own counter-culture attitudes as I could. It was huge fun to write and has received very good reviews on Amazon. In less than 24 hours, it’s already garnered some nasty comments from people on the Kingsville History website. Noted historian Michael Bliss (from Kingsville) wrote me a couple of nice letters about how much he liked Promised Lands. his father and mine were close friends in the 40s and 50s.
I spent over 40 years as a TV producer/director. Starting with CBC’s Mr Dressup Show in 1974, I graduated to directing TV movies and drama in many countries, but the one show that everyone remembers was Jim Henson’s Fraggle Rock. My wife also wrote a dozen episodes. She’s a late-life success as a screenwriter with some big projects in the offing. I’m now producing a documentary project recording the reminiscences of nearly 100 1960s political radicals, and may write another book based on the material.
My son Sam is in a band called Sheesham Lotus & ‘Son – they’re now touring Ireland and UK – and my daughter, Zoe, has a post-doctoral research fellowship at the London School of Economics in UK. I think she’s the reincarnation of my mother. Both are married; Sam has 2 children, so I’m a grandpa. How time flies.
Despite my misgivings, I miss Kingsville – for good or ill, my basic sensibility was formed there – but I’m very critical of it as well. Of course, the things that are “wrong” with Kingsville are wrong with the whole world, so, there’s no escape! But I sometimes long to return and live in peace by Lake Erie, like your family did. I live in Toronto, close to that sorry excuse for a lake that they call “Ontario.”
I think that – now that the word about Promised Lands has spread to Kingsville – I may be lynched if I make an appearance there. If there’s a book-burning at Main & Division, can I count on you to take video? I’ll use the footage in my documentary!
Many thanks for taking the time to write.
Discovered your web-site while doing research for a 50Year K.D.H.S.Reunion this fall, during Migration Festival.Hello Debbie ! Hope you both remember me.( Class of 69)
Hi Bob, Thanks for your note. I don’t remember you because I left Kingsville in November, 1966. I headed off to Europe and the Middle East for 4 years, and never returned to Kingsville except for short visits. Thanks for writing, however!
Are you organizing the 50-year event?
It would have been nice if students who didn’t go on to grade 13 (like my sister Anne and myself) had an opportunity to celebrate our graduation year (in my case 1967) but we left early and were easily forgotten and never stayed connected with our friends from the 50s and 60s in our home town of Kingsville. Your book brought back a flood of memories, some good, some bad but they are only memories.
I grew up in Leamington in the 1950s. Moved to Toronto later and spent my life in every radical social, political and cultural activity I could find. Recently, I moved back to Kingsville not surprised to find the place as dead as they come. Then, I read about you and your experiences. You had to flee as well.
I was thinking about putting up posters about town for a founding meeting of the Anarcho-Communist Atheist Free Love Society just for the michief of it. I think there’s an old SDS leader around here somewhere.
Besides that cultur poetry might you be up to anything else at this time?
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