In May 2011, after four years of life on McNutt's Island, we moved to Montreal. This blog remains, though, as a (sort of) daily record of our time on the island, and a winding path for anyone who would like to meander about among its magical places. For additional perspectives and insights I recommend Greg's book, Island Year: Finding Nova Scotia (2010), and my Bowl of Light (2012). I'll continue to post once in a while. If you do want to read this blog, one option would be to begin at the beginning of it (which is, as we all know, in blog-world, at the end), and read forward, concluding with the most recent entry. It's a journal, really, so it does makes more sense if you read it that way. But, you know, read it any way you like.

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Weather report

Earlier this week the weather was quite cold, with snow blowing sideways across the windows and the first icicles of winter glittering from the roof's edge. Then it warmed up quickly. Last night the house trembled for hours beneath the wind's relentless power, until suddenly it relented and went away, to blow somewhere else I suppose.  At midnight the air outside was warm, quiet, sated, pungent with seaweed.  After such a storm the waters beyond the island continue to churn and curl and dash.  The ocean pounds the cape on the southern tip, and pours down the eastern and western sides. Huge waves march single file down the centre of the shallow western channel. On the island's northern end, closest to the inner harbour, the currents from the east and from the west meet in fierce underwater combat.  Then the air is still, but the ocean's deep rhythmic drum beats against the island, and its sound penetrates every living cell.   

We rely on three weather reports, all of them conflicting. Usually one is accurate, although we will not know for sure which one until afterward. We do not blame the weather reports.  The western cove on McNutt's Island is neither raw Atlantic Ocean nor protected inner harbour. The report from Environment Canada is taken from Baccaro Point, not far away down the southwestern coast toward Cape Sable. Baccaro Point sits exposed at the sea's edge.  We have been there, and seen the fenced-in field of small shining instruments ceaselessly spinning as they measure the elements. The other two reports are for the Town of Shelburne, in the harbour's deepest pocket, not for the island.    

He's giving wind, people say around here; he's giving sun; he's giving snow; he's giving rain.  I do not know who he is.  Maybe he is some Nova Scotian weather god, a dramatic sort, more Celtic or Acadian than stolid New Englander,  who gives magician-like, with sudden feints and flourishes, with surprises up his sleeve, who keeps us on the edges of our seats, and plays to our astonishment.