When the pizza-delivery man didn’t want to leave, I knew it was time to get this book underway. He made the delivery, then hesitated, apparently surprised and entranced. He gazed around at wild meadows, tall trees, rural hills that surround the farmhouse where my family and I have resided as tenants for the past thirty years. Perhaps, too, he was hearing the burbling of Cold Creek, close-by. After all, it was a hot summer day. In any case, he took his time leaving, slowly driving away down our lane, back into the City from whence he’d just emerged, like a time-traveler popping-in through some Sci-Fi worm-hole.
In retrospect, such reactions are not uncommon. Over the years, tradesmen, curious visitors, even a fireman… all mopped city-weary faces and were ready to steal a little ‘country time’ here.
Many people dream of a place like this. The idea of a small house set within a thousand-acres of fields, forest, wetlands and working farmland, perched improbably on the City’s edge. Of course, those dreamers may not know the half. The risks as well as the rewards of making such a dream come true. Dreamers are beautiful people, but…
They may not know, although sense something of, the countless other life-forms that share this place with its human residents. And of the bonds that grow among species, across what might seem to be unbridgeable gulfs of strangeness, multiplying the possibilities of love, and also loss. How those bonds, strong as they can be, are broken when the City carelessly pushes closer to the edge.
They may not know that by merely stepping out from their vehicle to touch a wildflower here, they risk acquiring a hitchhiking, disease-carrying blacklegged tick. Or being pricked by a West-Nile infected mosquito.
With the pace of change quickening day by day – a major arterial road is being widened along the Reserve’s south border, and city-sized subdivisions are currently rising on the north side, within Ontario’s supposedly protected “Green Belt” – it’s time now to take up the pen and share this place, which has become an informal “Nature Reserve On The City’s Edge.” To communicate something of the reality of this nature/urban dream, at once richer than can be imagined, but also risky and uncommonly perilous. To do so before it fades further in the face of the City’s relentless expansion… before this living dream, and its secrets, are lost forever.
July, 2018. My new book, “NATURE RESERVE ON THE CITY’S EDGE,” is now available in hard-copy format. This book is Book 2 in my NATURAL YEARS SERIES, of which “THE ROUGE RIVER VALLEY, AN URBAN WILDERNESS” is Book 1.
Note, both books are also available as Kobo eBooks.
Specs: 8.5×11 pb format. 161 pages. Approx 24 BW and 12 colour photos. Index.
To order a signed, personalized copy(s) of “NATURE RESERVE ON THE CITY’S EDGE, ” (book is $20.00+$5.00 shipping and handling), send expression of interest to, firstname.lastname@example.org
September, 2018. Encouraged that ‘On Nature’ has expressed interest in the book, and in perhaps sharing it with their thousands of members.
September 15, 2018. I am looking at issuing a special, limited edition of “Nature Reserve On The City’s Edge.” It will be Smyth-sewn, hardcover. All photos will be in colour. In addition, I will tip-in a unique, original 8×10 b&w hand-tinted large-format photo taken on site. This collector’s edition will be limited to twenty copies. Cost will be $60.00/ copy. In order to proceed, I will need pre-orders of ten copies. Of course, with this tiny number they could be gone quickly. Drop me an email to reserve yours.