We live at Blue Bell Corner, New Brunswick, with a glorious view of Blue Bell Mountain. Across the valley, among other streams, is the winding and babbling Blue Bell Brook. Joy, my mother, has a Scottish background, and bluebells are one of the most common flowers there,featured in many poems and songs including the famous “Blue Bells of Scotland” folk song, and the joyous Blue Bell Polka (Mom loves a good polka!) But most of all, is the following poem, by Sheldon (Belldon) Chadwick. Not only does “don” at the end of a placename mean “hill” – orig. ‘dun’, ‘doon’ or later, ‘downs’ – but this poem has all three of our birthstones mentioned in it (Mom’s is Ruby, Richard’s is Opal, Mine is Amethyst). It also mentions our nick-names “Joy, Rich and Jewels”, as well as describing the very vistas which we see and breathe all around us every day – including, of course, the BLUEBELLS! And finally, the Chadwick poem is tremendously timely because, after 10 years together living in and renovating other country and historic homes, Richard proposed to me with a diamond intertwined set – I’ve never had a single diamond in my whole 50 years and now I’ve a cluster of ’em! So, he is like the poet protagonist below, and I, the “adorned Bride of Love”. All very romantic. In the U.K., where I’ve also lived and worked, they would say “naff”. But we all three find it most fitting, nonetheless.
*********The “Because -Why” of this Category, “Because-Why”:
A great Canadian character who really deserves to be as famous as Anne of Green Gables and her Matthew (and Marilla) is the indomitable Maggie Muggins. (Oh, my middle name is Ann all right – WITHOUT-an-e. But I sooooo wanted to be ‘Maggie’ most of my early life! ) Whenever Maggie had a perplexing puzzle that she wanted help solving, she would skip down the garden path to her good friend, Mr. McGarrity (och, another Scot!), who would lean on his hoe and try to help her figure out life. These books were written by New Brunswick’s own Mary Grannan (orig., Fredericton) who also wrote all the “Just Mary” stories and had her own children’s radio programmes in Toronto from just before WWII right up until the year I was born! So, if I ever think something needs explaining within (or without!) the confines of this blog, I’ll be sure to share the “Because-Why” with you, here in this category.