Thursday, April 19, 2012


When looking around for a new place to live, I don’t think I would choose Owen Sound.

In fact, I am sure of it. 

The City has some nice things to be sure. It’s located on Georgian Bay which appears to be more like an ocean rather than a bay, since it stretches on forever towards the horizon. There are plenty of older homes and buildings- even in the downtown area, which gives it a nice, historic feel. Orillia could- I should say “could have”, taken some lessons from Owen Sound. We’ve pulled old buildings down willy-nilly over the years.
Why just look at the latest result?
It’s that ugly, glass-walled modern library nudging up against the Historic Opera House.
Did anyone even look at the plans to ensure the building would fit into the idea of a “Historic, Victorian Downtown?”
It’s like the Emperor’s New Clothes.
Everyone’s afraid to say the building sucks the big one!
It’s stark naked!
It doesn’t ooze any Victorian Charm. 

Back to Owen Sound.
A river runs through it and big boats still come across the Great Lakes to the grain elevator.
Young, unwed Mothers and redneck fathers gather outside the downtown Tim Horton’s, blowing smoke into the faces of their newborns and young children. A mirror image of the Tim’s on Colborne Street in Downtown Orillia.
That felt like home… 

The OS has built a stunning new Rec Centre. It’s called the Coliseum. Two ice surfaces, two pools and more. It’s not all open yet but will be soon.
Here at home, we have two ice surfaces snuggling up to Oro Medonte. It’s too far for the kids to walk or bike, dragging their skates and equipment with them. That could change if the West Street site becomes a new Rec Facility. Of course there’s as much chance of that happening as there is having the Jehovah’s passing by my front door.

Culture? Theatre? Museum. I did see a Billy Bishop Museum signpost.
OS has an Airport. The Billy Bishop Airport.
Do you think Bishop may have been born in OS?
He must have at least passed through OS’s airspace.
Orillia used to be part of an airport. Now Barrie and Oro Medonte own it. One day that will bite Orillia in the ass.
Big time!
Blame that on the last City Council. 

I am not sure if Owen Sound has a sense of humour like Leacock’s Orillia. I didn’t see or hear a lot of laughter. I saw a lot of golf courses, however. 

They have a marvellous park with a river cutting through it. Swans, ducks and Peacocks populate its banks. They have a nice park on the Georgian Bay shoreline as well, not far from the massive grain elevator at the harbour. 

No, alas, Owen Sound will not be our new home- although they do have a Sears Department store. Their population sits at 22,000 but I was told they are a centre for the surrounding area, so OS services a larger population than their welcome signs reflect. 

I still think a move to British Columbia- Ladner, is the ticket. Better still, Salt Spring Island. Imagine just being simple Island Folk floating in the Pacific waters. Nanaimo or Tofino look promising as well.  

Then, there’s the option of having a small home in South Florida- somewhere near Naples where there’s not too many alligators- and a small home back here for the summer months- somewhere where there’s not too many bears- just not in Orillia.

Maybe a Toronto or Mississauga Condo looking out over Lake Ontario?

We’ve been told we would be a pair of married, Gay WASP’s, living as racial minorities in Mississauga these days but that’s okay.
I still miss that city…and Hazel. 

The search continues.