Friday, June 24, 2011

A Story in my Treasures

        Today I am selling a Coleman Camp stove and lantern. I am trying to get rid of some of my "stuff" that I haven't used for a long time. I haven't used these two articles since sometime in the late 1980's. I have had these two items since 1965. As I part with them I think about some parts of my life.

       In 1965 I was a young teacher at Inuvik NWT and then, as now, was very much an outdoors person. In the summer of 1965 I went to Saskatoon, Sask. to take a summer school course. As soon as I got there I bought the Coleman Camp stove and lantern. I parcelled them up and immediately sent them on their way to catch the barge to Inuvik. Air freight was very expensive so heavier things were sent in by river barge.

      Inuvik is situated on the Mackenzie delta and is a boaters paradise as there are thousands of kilometers of channels on the delta. I had a small boat and motor and with my purchase of stove and lamp was ready to explore the Mackenzie delta. My friend had a tent and provided moral support.

    So my stove and lantern went with me on fishing expeditions and goose hunts. They also travelled on the Arctic ocean to Tuktoyaktuk. The big adventure they took me on was to travel by boat up the Mackenzie river from Tuktoyaktuk to Hay River , a distance of 1800 kms(1100 miles).

    In 1969 I became a southerner again and so my stove and lamp became part of my car camping experience. The first apartment I rented I had to use my camping equipment for two weeks as I was waiting for my furniture to come from storage. We spent most of this time camping.

    Later we bought a small 16 foot holiday trailer. We found that it was easier to use the Coleman stove and cook outside rather than the small trailer stove.

     So these two items remind me of my camping experiences and the stages I went through. Having had these two old items for 46 years covers a good portion of one's life and as a result they are full of good memories.