All County, All the Time Since 2010 MAKE THIS YOUR PRINCE EDWARD COUNTY HOME...PAGE!  Thursday, December 3rd, 2020

Walking Gives Me Time To Reflect

Every morning at 6:00 a.m., I don my reflective vest and my L.E.D. headlamp and set off up our road toward the Bay of Quinte with our dog, Christie. I call it “our road”, since it is, in fact, named Sprague Road. However, we cannot lay any claim to the naming the road as the name is in reference to pioneer Spragues who once owned the land. We round the corner and continue west as far as Baycrest Marina, and then head back home. Total distance every morning, rain or shine or snow, is 5 km. There is just a hint of light on the horizon as we turn into our driveway. This winter I have been working away on my book, “Up Before Five – the Family Farm”. I expect to have the manuscript done this week. The walk provides lots of inspiration since I pass the farm every morning that had once been such a vibrant part of my life. Except for a few fields here and there, the farm is dormant now, and has been since 1979. I remember days on the tractor seat, sowing grain, baling hay, harvesting grain, silo filling. I see the pasture field, now thick with red cedars, where I once got caught in a vicious thunderstorm with a herd of cows, and was sure I could see St. Elmo’s fire, so highly charged was the air around me with electricity. That was one of few times I was truly afraid. I pass by the barn, now grown up with weeds that sits there deserted and remember days of cows going in and out, lights ablaze as we finished up the chores. Mostly on these mornings I miss the sounds that would wake us up gently every morning – the cows at the barnyard gate, the chickens waking up on their roosts, and the new born calves wondering where their morning offering of milk might be. There is silence now, and only the sound of an ice fishermen on an ATV, on his way to his fish hut can be heard, as well as the approach of an early morning motorist. Often I lament about the death of our farm, but have to keep reminding myself that it is now in a different era, the same as the four decades we operated the farm was our era, and the period before my parents took ownership. It’s all in my book.

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About the Author: Terry Sprague became interested in nature at an early age. "Growing up on the family farm at Big Island, 12 miles north of Picton, on the shore of the beautiful Bay of Quinte, I was always interested in the natural world around me. During my elementary school days at the small one-room school I attended on Big Island, I received considerable encouragement from the late Marie Foster, my teacher in Grades 6 through 8. Her home was a short distance from where I lived and through the years she was responsible for developing my interest in birds. The late Phil Dodds, a former editor with the Picton Gazette, also a great nature enthusiast, suggested I undertake a nature column - a column I have submitted weekly since 1965. The column has since expanded to the Napanee Beaver and the Tweed News. Life has been good, and through the years I have enjoyed working with such nature related agencies as Glenora Fisheries Research as a resource technician, Sandbanks Provincial Park as a park interpreter and Quinte Conservation as a naturalist and outdoor events coordinator. As a nature interpreter, currently working from my home office, I now create and lead numerous interpretive events in the area and offer indoor audio/visual presentations to interested groups. Could one who is interested in nature have enjoyed a more exhilarating period in the work force?" Terry's website is www.naturestuff.net

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  1. Paul says:

    Hey Terry when this book goes to the publisher let me know I would like to get a copy .
    Thanks Paul

  2. Louisa says:

    Farms being the backbone of life, it is no wonder you have such strong, personal memories. I can’t wait to read all about it in Up Before Five. I miss our farm too, as you know, even if we did only have it eight years, and remember the times there regularly, particularly on my drive to and from work through beautiful Prince Edward County, which is so full of farming life.

  3. Gabrielle Holowacz says:

    They sound like wonderful memories. Looking forward to your book, Terry.

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