The Pictures: Sculpture of cowboy, horse, and rattlesnake at the Ranchmen’s Club; brand of Marnie Haas, 90+ female rancher, at the Ranchmen’s Club; Anne green at rehearsal; the three actors; Judy Gabriel of CITYTV; Anne’s Event intro; the Knoc United Church Choir singing the first Hymn; we process down the aisle; the actors in position; “Adam One;” “Ren;” “Toby;” Questions; Chuck and Lisa Priestley of Nature Canada. (2, 3a, 3b, 4, 5, 6, and possibly 7 by Kathie Stehl, firstname.lastname@example.org.)
To see what happened between the Toronto Event (24th) and the Calgary Event (29th), see the Globe and Mail blog (www.theglobeandmail.com/blogs/atwood-on-tour) – which includes the Twitterparty in the kitchen, streamed by McLean Greaves on his Iphone – it does look a bit like a horror movie just as the monster is coming in (http://qik.com/yearoftheflood) – and the trip to Kitchener and their Public Library event– for which Mirko Petricevic of The Record submits the following no doubt disgraceful video: (http://media.therecord.topscms.com/audio/dd/ba/3793f97a4b019db512dbb20ed2f9.mp3) — and the Word on the Street LongPen 3-city event on Sunday, signing in Halifax and Vancouver, reading to all three cities, Q&A in all three, then signing in Toronto.
On Monday, September 28, Ashley Dunn and I flew to Calgary, where we were greeted at the airport not only by the wonderful white-cowboy-hatted and red-jacketed volunteers who help out there, but also by the delightful and efficient Anne Green, founder of WordFest, the Calgary writers’ festival (www.wordfest.com). I can’t actually remember what happened next, but I was probably writing the blog for the Ottawa Event, or maybe the Globe one, see above. In any case, the next morning we were off to the lovely old Knox United Church, to sign books in advance for Pages on Kensington and also to rehearse, under the direction of Glenda Stirling, and with the help of stage manager Kelly Lunn – including a scene we did three times for the media present
Then Anne Green took Ashley and me for a special treat: lunch at the Ranchmen’s Club, the 1891 Calgary institution. We ate in the Wolf’s Den, appropriate considering “Predator Day” in the book, but despite the carnivore carnival implied by the name there were indeed vegetarian choices, supplied by top chef Kenneth Titcomb, who uses organic and local produce whenever possible.
After a break – during which I did a live radio show by phone to Loas Angeles (KPPC-FM/Patt Morrison) – it was off to a fundraiser cocktail reception, where – among many others – I met Jamie Niessen of TransCanada, and heard about the TransCanada Reads – a book club within the company – and also about their 1M$ investment in Important Bird Areas, with Nature Canada. Here are their plans:
• Phase 1 – development of the Caretaker Network – objective is to develop a national level program, strategy, and plans for establishing the Caretaker Network across the country.
• Phase 2 – Implementation of the Caretaker Network – objective is to implement the program plans in target provinces where Caretakers are recruited to act as stewards of the local IBA
• Phase 3 – Expansion of the Caretaker Network – objective is to evaluate first two phases and continue to roll out the program across the country
• The overall goal is to have Caretakers active at 50 to 75% of all 597 IBAs within the five year duration of this project.
After hearing this heartening news, I joined the cast in the “green room” — in actuality, the vicar’s study – until it was time to begin. The singers were the Knox United choir, so when they began singing the four of us processed down the aisle, feeling a little sparse. (Oh well, Adam One’s group was small at the beginning…)
Laura Parken gave a survival-bent but ultimately caring Toby, wearing a huge garden hat she’d borrowed from a friend; Arielle Rombaugh –who’d rhinestoned-gunned the heels of her boots just for this — “I love glittery things, so I went for this role straightaway” – delivered a brittle but tremulous Ren; and Trevor Leigh, with his blissful Buddhistic Inner Smile, bestowed upon us a truly charismatic Adam One – a cult leader you might actually want to follow (or else get bronzed and put on your mantelpiece). All turned out most admirably!