Nimpkish Lake and the Karmutzen Range by the artist.

North Island homecoming

Artist Gordon Henschel sees the North Island with fresh eyes after a vacation.

My dad was a great believer in taking a trip away from home once in a while; a break from the usual, so to speak. Even when we were very poor we would take some affordable holiday, such as a canoeing or camping outing or perhaps a short trip with our old truck to someplace a little different. After we returned home we saw our house and yard with fresh and appreciative eyes.

Last winter we drove south for a couple of weeks to Southern California to take a most enjoyable break, while visiting friends who live down there. This was good because, not only did we see a totally different environment, but also another kind of lifestyle. However, you can probably guess what happened to our perception of our good old North Island.

Returning home, the first thing we noticed after crossing the border back into Canada, was how the pace of life slowed down and people seemed to have more time to talk. How do you explain this phenomenon? Is it because the massive population of the U.S. means they have to be more efficient in dealing with large numbers of people and that efficiency means the personal touch goes by the wayside?

Compared to California, B.C. is an empty land. It was so nice to come back to empty highways and miles and miles of miles and miles; back to the green on green of Vancouver Island.

I always enjoy the drive to and from Campbell River but this time, in coming home from far away, I was especially struck by the beauty of Nimpkish Lake. All North Islanders have to drive along this lake on their journey south and, no doubt, all of us take the beauty of this drive for granted.

There are just a few rare places in Canada that have this kind of drive with the Karmutzen Mountains as a backdrop for the lake. Not high, as mountains go, but very immediate; right there, rising straight out of the lake. With snow-capped tops most of the year, they give us post-card pleasure as we drive by.

This oil painting of Nimpkish Lake and the Karmutzen Range is from one of my favourite spots along this drive just 11 kms from home. Am I lucky or what?

Gordon Henschel owns an art gallery in Nimpkish Heights. www.henschel.ca.

 

Just Posted

VIDEO: 12th annual Port Hardy Wild hockey tournament finals

The Wild vs. Whalers and Warriors vs. Flyers from last weekend’s tournament.

Tyson’s Thoughts: It’s my four-year anniversary at the Gazette

I went from driving a forklift in a warehouse to an award-winning journalist in just a few years.

First annual North Island Christmas Festival

“If it’s a big success we can do it every year”

Port Hardy Secondary School girls volleyball team competes in Parksville

The girls volleyball team has a new coach this year, Kenzie McDonald.

33rd annual Rotary Auction raises $50,000 gross profit

The Rotary Auction is an annual joint project between the Port Hardy and Port McNeill clubs.

VIDEO: B.C. to restrict nicotine content, bring in 20% tax on vaping products

Province will also restrict candy and fruit flavoured vaping products to adult-only stores

Seguin lifts surging Stars to 4-2 win over Canucks

Dallas is 6-0-1 in last seven outings

‘City that protects rapists’: Sexual assault survivor slams Kelowna mayor for defending RCMP

Heather Friesen spent the morning handing out flyers around city hall calling out the mayor

Batten down the hatches: Wet and windy weekend on the way for coastal B.C.

Environment Canada issues special weather warning for Lower Mainland, Vancouver Island

BC Liquor Stores to move fully to paper bags by March

Vancouver Island to be the first to convert to paper bags in November

Tolko shuts B.C. divisions for two weeks over holidays

Head office to close from Dec. 23-27; two weeks’ downtime runs Dec. 21-Jan. 6

B.C. government working with RCMP to address $10 million in budget cuts

Public Safety Minister Mike Farnworth issues statement following report of RCMP cost-cutting

Port Moody mayor says stayed sex assault charge related to ‘awkward date’

Rob Vagramov said charge was related to a string of dates in 2015

UBC conference draws fire over speaker from Chinese tech company blacklisted in U.S.

The company that has been blacklisted by the U.S. over links to the repression of China’s Muslim minority

Most Read