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English Level II started TODAY. You can still register. Classes are Tuesday and Thursday, 9 am - noon

Weekend English starts SATURDAY. Register Now! Class is Saturdays, 9 am - noon.

Our next Read English Book Club will start May 17. 

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Lois Novikoff is a writer in the Your Lifetime of Stories program, which is a partnership between CALLS and the Writers Foundation of Strathcona County.
She wrote the story, "The Forbidden Passage" about her childhood.

To get to Grandma’s house, we passed Aunt Bea’s, across the east flat to the river’s edge, then up onto the wiggly old swinging bridge, through lover’s lane where Laddie the beautiful collie barked and waggled his tail in anticipation of our arrival. He then proceeded to tail-waggle us to the lovely old farmhouse. Laddie had given us away as he barked our arrival, letting Grandma know that we had come by way of the “forbidden wobbly old swinging bridge” As always, Grandma was sitting by the kitchen table, overlooking her treasured rock garden, her pride and joy.

Grandma was a dear, kind-hearted Swedish lady, about four foot nothing and nearly as wide. When you were engulfed by her smothering hugs with her ample bosom, it was an unforgettable experience, a gift of love. When finally she released you, you would come up gasping for air.

Her smile was hiding the fact you were about to get a scolding for having come by way of the forbidden passage but her scolding was nothing compared to the lecture we would get when we got home by way of the west flat that would take us twenty minutes longer and was not half as much fun or exciting. The flats were two pieces of land divided by the Medicine River.

The swinging bridge had been erected many years earlier about five miles upstream where a new iron bridge now stands in its place. Grandfather felt the old swinging bridge would certainly shorten the summer crossing and had it placed just around the bend near our favorite swimming hole, where we spent many happy hours when we were able to find a chaperone. On one occasion (unchaperoned) my twin sister and I were bobbing up and down into deeper water. All my cousin could see was our hair floating as he dragged us by our hair to safety. (Our parents never knew)

Just down from the swinging bridge were rapid where the men would chop holes in the ice with a ‘snow’ mixture. This would cause the river to flood the ice for miles downstream. It was like skating on glass. This is what dreams are made of.

Growing up in a little hamlet was a precious gift not everyone gets to experience. The advantages are many. We had the ability to gather together a pick-up game of scrub in only moments. We played kick the can, blind man’s bluff, anti I over in everyone’s back yard as there were no fences in the hamlet. Most of all we made lifelong friends. We are gifted with treasured memories from long ago.

Posted by author's permission

     To get to Grandma’s house, we passed Aunt Bea’s, across the east flat to the river’s edge, then up onto the wiggly old swinging bridge, through lover’s lane where Laddie the beautiful collie barked and waggled his tail in anticipation of our arrival. He then proceeded to tail-waggle us to the lovely old farmhouse. Laddie had given us away as he barked our arrival, letting Grandma know that we had come by way of the “forbidden wobbly old swinging bridge” As always, Grandma was sitting by the kitchen table, overlooking her treasured rock garden, her pride and joy.

    Grandma was a dear, kind-hearted Swedish lady, about four foot nothing and nearly as wide. When you were engulfed by her smothering hugs with her ample bosom, it was an unforgettable experience, a gift of love. When finally she released you, you would come up gasping for air.

     Her smile was hiding the fact you were about to get a scolding for having come by way of the forbidden passage but her scolding was nothing compared to the lecture we would get when we got home by way of the west flat that would take us twenty minutes longer and was not half as much fun or exciting. The flats were two pieces of land divided by the Medicine River.

     The swinging bridge had been erected many years earlier about five miles upstream where a new iron bridge now stands in its place. Grandfather felt the old swinging bridge would certainly shorten the summer crossing and had it placed just around the bend near our favorite swimming hole, where we spent many happy hours when we were able to find a chaperone. On one occasion (unchaperoned) my twin sister and I were bobbing up and down into deeper water. All my cousin could see was our hair floating as he dragged us by our hair to safety. (Our parents never knew)

     Just down from the swinging bridge were rapid where the men would chop holes in the ice with a ‘snow’ mixture. This would cause the river to flood the ice for miles downstream. It was like skating on glass. This is what dreams are made of.

     Growing up in a little hamlet was a precious gift not everyone gets to experience. The advantages are many. We had the ability to gather together a pick-up game of scrub in only moments. We played kick the can, blind man’s bluff, anti I over in everyone’s back yard as there were no fences in the hamlet. Most of all we made lifelong friends. We are gifted with treasured memories from long ago.

 

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