Trucks and industry need to slow down

Charlotte Communiques by Evelyn von Almassy: I am going out on a limb here, if there are any limbs left.

  • Apr. 1, 2016 2:00 p.m.

I am going out on a limb here, and you will see that I mean this literally, if there are any limbs left. If this logging every five miles continues on Graham Island, there will soon be cries from the tourists.

There should already be concern from residents, but as far as I know, I have been the only one to comment on the issue.

There has been a huge increase in truck and other vehicle traffic, what with the installation of the high-speed Internet (a great project), and the logging up and down the island. The other day I was driving behind a truck full of dying trees, with limbs and bark flying onto my car. At the same time there was a full gravel truck backing up a road on the other side of the highway and, wait for it, another truck full of more dying trees coming towards me, luckily not in my lane.

Surely in 2016, it is possible to harvest sensibly, leave some of the trees beside the highway, not just so it looks more palatable, but also to cut down the wind tunnels that are being created. Driving has definitely become more hazardous with wind tunnels increasing, debris flying, and many more large vehicles. From my perspective, some of these full logging trucks seem to be driving at unsafe speeds as well. Anyone else noticed these problems?

On to happier events. There was an attentive crowd at Donna Duffy and John Thomas’s home last Friday night, as they hosted the book launch of Tlellian Keith Alexander’s first collection of the written word,  called Witty, Wild and Wondrous: A Lifetime of Stories. These stories are set in Boston, Edmonton, Winnipeg, Seattle and of course Haida Gwaii. They sparkled with Keith’s trademark laid-back humour. Both John and Keith read from the collection, to much applause. Keith is leaving the islands; by the time that you read this, he will be in Victoria, B.C. He is moving there to be closer to his brother and other family members. But, his books will be sold at the Q.C. Visitor Centre, and also online at Friesenpress.com and Amazon/Kindle. The stories are laugh-out-loud funny, and I am rationing my reading to a couple each day.

The following night was also dedicated to the arts, as Betsy Cardell, well-known for her exquisite batik creations, had her opening night of extraordinary art at Queen B’s. The Green Man of Haida Gwaii, which is a mix of offerings from nature, along with fired-clay faces and other materials, wowed the people in attendance. There were a lot of those little orange stickers on the wall; the show is up for about a month. Be sure that you take it in. Even though one might be downsizing, there are pieces that are small enough to fit anywhere.

Since I began with a not-so good news story, I will end with a great news story. A beloved one-and-a-half year old Shepherd dog, Luna, fell off a fishing boat in the dark, off the coast of Coronado, California, and was presumed drowned. But almost five weeks later, she was found by a biologist on San Clemente Island. This island is used by the U.S. Navy for navy and marines training. There is no freshwater on the island, but it had rained, and so there was freshwater for her in the puddles. She lived by eating dead gulls and dead fish on the shore, along with mice and rats. The U.S. Navy gave her a name tag with the words: Survival, Evasion, Resistance & Escape, along with “Keep the Faith.” Her strong swimming skills got her through an El Nino storm to the island. Makes you smile, doesn’t it?

SICK, an art show, opens on Friday, April 1st at the Haida Gwaii Museum at 7 p.m.

Stay safe while driving on the roads. Please send your news by 2 p.m. on Thursday to almassy@qcislands.net.

 

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