A Gordon Henschel original painting.

A Brush with Henschel: Wishin’ he was fishin’

This is a great painting season for me; the long, summer sunsets drawing me like a moth to a flame.

When we had visitors from Northern Manitoba, we took them out to Cluxewe Resort. We parked the car at the last campsite and walked out to the end of the spit.

The river, as it appears out of the forest, makes an abrupt turn to the west and wanders along through an elaborate system of channels for about 1500 metres before it is successful in meeting the sea.

That area is a wonderland for birders, since it was designated as a wildfowl sanctuary. As we walked along the spit, we counted many kinds of sea birds.

It was amazing how many others had the same plan for a short hike along the ocean. Most of them were from North Island but a few were visiting tourists from away, much like our guests. There were several motor homes in the campsite that were not local, but when it really comes alive, as do most of our campsites, is in July and August.

It is in August, in the dry season, when the Pink Salmon are waiting for enough water, to make their way up the Cluxewe, that dozens of fisherman, replete in hip waders, try their luck in the ocean.

This is also a great painting season for me; the long, summer sunsets drawing me like a moth to a flame. I was painting at one of the far west campsites when I spotted two camping partners, a man and his dog, sharing almost everything that camping life has to offer. The dog took part in all of the man’s activities, including his meal and perhaps even his beer!

It was when he put on his waders and slush-slushed out into the chuck that they suddenly became separable. The dog was not one of those retrievers that would rather swim than walk.

At first glance he seemed content to watch but if you listened closely you could hear a subdued whine that clearly spoke of a not too contented man’s best friend wishin’ he was fishin’.

Comments e-mail: ghenschel@shaw.ca, or website: www.henschel.ca

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