Thursday, February 17, 2005

New Brunswick

I've spent the last couple of February weeks driving around New Brunswick, which means that at least 20% of that time I was looking at this:




Exciting, no? There were definitely exceptions - the hilly and charming Moncton downtown, the poorly named but picturesque village of Doaktown, the span of Centennial Bridge over the Miramichi River. And out on the frost-heaved route 117 to Escuminac Point, New Brunswick definitely came through for me.




I particularly liked this boarded-up house sitting at the side of the road.




What surprises me most are the visible patches of green. I don't remember seeing any green in New Brunswick, but it's clearly in the photos. How much green did I miss? Not to mention: what else did I miss? Or even: how much am I missing every day? What gulf of perception does that patch of still-green grass signify?




Instead of pondering what-all my eyes elide, I'm going to show you this defunct grocery store.




This store (the Ep Uy Grocerie? I'm betting that "Ep-" is the start of "Epicerie," but I'm stymied by the "-uy") is located about 15 miles or so down the road from the boarded-up house in the town of Baie Ste Anne, a Francophone town on route 117 that produces tragedy, fishermen and oil pipeline workers. Its harbour allows passage onto the nasty Northumberland Strait, which is liberally specked with shoals, sandbars, rocks and difficult currents.




Baie Ste Anne also produced Canadian and British Empire boxing champion Yvon Durelle, who had his heyday in the 1950s. He now lives about a mile or so from this abandoned grocery store, playing the VLT machines at the Super Decker Cafe next to his house.




The Super Decker has some good fried clams.

15 comments:

Executive Housewife said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Executive Housewife said...

Love the boarded up house. I wish you could have gone inside to get some photos. It seems like it was once a beautiful home. Thanks for sharing your trip with us.

palinode said...

Hey, if I want photos of house interiors or houses in progress, I can always visit your site...

Friday said...

It's strange how you would infer "Epicerie," but not "Buy."

palinode said...

I thought of "Buy," but since the name may be French, I didn't assume it. Also, there is more evidence for "Epicerie" than "Buy": the relentless bilingualism of New Brunswick; the greater ease of reconstructing a word from the beginning instead of its ending; and the two yellow dots following the "Ep" placed precisely where the 'i's in epicerie would go.

But yeah, it's funny that I'd do that.

Friday said...

Well la di da. Que serra.

palinode said...

I'm offering a semester credit course in looking at that abandoned grocery store. It's called Semiology of Defunct Maritime Food Vendors 265. There will be field trips aplenty.

Friday said...

Voulez-vous buy mes baguettes?

palinode said...

No I don't, you filthy girl.

Friday said...

I keep a very tidy baguette, I'll have you know.

Anonymous said...

Friday & Palinode, perhaps the "uy" is an indication that the long-gone proprietor of the epicerie was named "Guy"?
-Skatchina

Friday said...

It certainly has a nice ring to it: L'Epicerie de Guy. Venez, un et tous, et BUY MES BAGUETTES.

Friday said...

Although if you look very closely at the stain of clean left behind by the absent letters, you'll see that we're both right. Not you though, Skatchina. Imagination has no place in these linguistic parts. La Guyfferance, Derrida might have said.

Anonymous said...

Hi, im from Baie-Ste-Anne.. the name on the store was infact GUY!..

palinode said...

anonymous - Thanks for the bit of information! I wish I'd been there in the summertime.