Reading places

I’m a reader of plaques and historical signage.

I love to stop at those pullouts along the highway with boards full of words about what happened at this very spot. Maybe it was a battle or a disaster or a significant way-point for some journey of exploration. Maybe it’s the ancestral home of a people group.

I love to discover words while walking  – words on a plaque that tell me who used to live or work in this building, what happened on this street corner, even the name of a “loved one” to whom a park bench is dedicated.

These various words remind me how deep places are, how much longer-lasting than I am, how in flux they are and yet the same. They remind me of the receptivity of places, allowing me to be here, giving me a kind of love. These found words tug me into the place itself, link me to the deeper meanings it contains. And always by insisting that many belong, and I belong: I’m here, reading. Continue reading

Yearning for Winnipeg

You know how it can be when you’re reading sometimes. You’re following the text but, on a parallel track, you’re glimpsing related stories of your own.

Immigrants in Prairie Cities (see previous post) provoked recollections of my experience with “city,” this in particular reference to Mennonites, and I’m going to try to work out — for myself — what I was seeing. If you’re interested, please come along!

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