Rainy Lake is a sheet of ice now, and I can see the ice huts of the Americans across the lake. The ice huts are laid out along the horizon, like a small village laid out in a string. I heard the men have some wild parties in those ice huts. And that they stay in those huts all winter, any chance they can get. Refusing to go home.
Ice huts must be winter substitutes for garages, where men go to escape.
Last winter when I was here in Fort Frances, sitting alone, eating my supper in the dining room at Place Rendezvous, looking out the big plate glass windows to the line of huts across the lake, I asked the waitress, "where do the women go to escape?"
She thought abit then said, well, I have a craft room. My husband is not allowed in there. Her sewing machine is in there. Her computer is in there. She does some scrapbooking, too, in her "room of one's own."
Does your husband have his own room, too? like a computer room just for him? I asked.
No, she replied, he has the couch and the big screen tv in the den.
Last winter, in February, I snapped this photo of an old elm on the banks of Rainy Lake, from the steps of Our Lady of Lourdes Church. Today, I drove down to Fort Frances this afternoon with my husband to keep him company. It's his turn to teach classes here. The top photo was taken last fall when I was here and I walked along the shore of Rainy Lake and saw this graceful old elm on the bank of the lake.
I don't think I'll try crossing into the US this time. What would the border guards think of my husband and I together, both with Lebanese stamps in our passports? If we say we want to go shopping at KMart will they believe us? When we say we will have supper at Barney's will they doubt us? Does having Lebanese stamps in your passport put you at the bottom of the 13 country, 653 million person long US extra measures security list?
Guess we'll stay on the Canadian side.