Research Road Trip: Washburn Island, Lake Scugog, Ontario
29 Jun 2012
My wonderful friend and fellow writer, Mary McIntyre, is working on a book, "Washburn Island: Memoir of a Childhood".
Her book is about two British immigrant families who escape Depression Era blue-collar jobs in Toronto's East End by purchasing cottage properties on isolated Washburn Island, located in Lake Scugog's marshy waters. For twenty years the older generation watch children grow, marry, go to war and bring a new generation to cottage life. In 1957, a violent tragedy kills one family member and severely injures another. Mary was ten-years old in 1957, child-like confusion amidst grieving adults brings a difficult transition. The innocence and peace of a summer playground is forever altered.
When Mary planned a research road trip to re-visit the site of her family cottage on Lake Scugog, she invited the members of our writing group the 'Lifer Writers Ink' (Lifers) to join her.
The day started out overcast and cool. First stop was Hank's Pastries in Port Perry for a big breakfast, and then onto Washburn Island. While Mary interviewed the current owner of the much-changed cottage and shoreline, I wandered off to take photos.