Memoirs, Or Shadows Of What Has Been
By Peter Landry

Chapter Forty-Seven: The Yellow Teapot & The Appalachian Trail, 1996


In Canada, we have two levels of governments: federal and provincial. The US has the same setup as do a number of world states; this, usually because of the historical reasons in their original setup. However, the majority of states in the world have a unitary system of government, viz, only one sovereign authority, a central government. No matter the form of sovereign government (two levels, or unitary) most cities around the world have a local government known as a municipal government, usually incorporated under the laws of the sovereign government in which the municipality exists; it is, as people who study such matters, "a creature of the province."

To quote T. S. Ashton:

"Men lived their lives in a provincial or parochial setting. ... The market town where local produce was sold, local incomes spent, and local prices determined, was of more account than [that of a capital many miles away] ... If men wanted to improve a road or a river, construct a harbour, build a hospital, or initiate a new business enterprise, it was on local, rather than central, resources that they drew. Loyalties attached to the country house, the county regiment, and the regional hunt; affections were centered on the parish church, the village green, and the local inn." (An Economic History of England: The 18th Century)
What sparked this comment about municipal government, is that, in 1996, the municipality I have lived in through the years, the city of Halifax was reorganized so to include, what had been before, a number of adjoining territories: Dartmouth, Bedford, and Halifax County. The idea was to reduce the number of administrative departments. A number of years (since the writing of this) have passed; I doubt that much money has been saved, but it most certainly has diluted the function and meaning of municipal government.


I will not start in on the question of whether Canada should have a unitary government, and thus, to get rid of the princedoms and attending expense of maintaining them - the provinces.

In 1996, the world population - a topic not unrelated to that just considered - continues to increase at an an alarming rate. Eighty million people were added to the total, 5.8 billion. As I write this piece (2018) the total population is at 7.7 billion; compare this to the level in 1927, two billion, and 33 years later, 1960, three billion. The resulting problems of increasing population, I have written about before and simply refer the reader to it. When taking into this question of incrasing population into consideration, I should mention two events that occured in 1996: first there was Dolly the sheep, who was the first mammal to be successfully cloned from an adult cell; and the second was that in the Northern Territory of Australia, voluntary euthanasia was legalized.

Well, as for personal matters: they are pretty much wrapped up in a viewing of the Pictures. I was fully in my cooking days, but that, through the years, drifted off as Margo became the principal cook (a good one). The Grandkids came over on a number of occasions to our place (Admirality Place) and camped out in our living room. Then, of course, there was the Yellow Tea Pot. Margo and I threw our change in the tea pot (no pennies or nickels) and the kids were allowed, when we brought it out (It would not be if they asked for it), to stick their hand for one grap. The youngest Melissa was always ahead as her hand was smaller and thus allowed more room for the coin as the hand was withdrawn through the narrow opening: this was a great hit with the kids.

Our camping and hiking activities continued, often with our friends, Roger and Paula Churchill. On a separate memorable occasion in 1996, Margo and I rented a van (we rented in those days), filled it with our camping gear and made a very memorable trip down to the trail head of the Appalachian Trail: Springer Mountain, Georgia. From there we went north following the trail as best we could and in the process hiked many of its parts. In the process we took a side trip to the outskirts of Boston visiting those places frequented by Emerson and Thoreau.

The top songs for 1996:
I Love You Always Forever By Donna Lewis
Wannabe By Spice Girls
Macarena By Los del Río
Its All Coming Back To Me By Celine Dion
"Time To Say Goodbye" Bocelli & Brightman

As for the top movies of 1996:
The English Patient

Tchaikovsky's "1812"

[Pictures, 1996 (1) (Cooking & Cape Split)]
[Pictures, 1996 (2) (Back Country of Kegi)]
[Pictures, 1996 (3) (Camping The Appalachian Trail)]
[Pictures, 1996 (4) (Yellow Teapot & Xmas)]

NEXT: [Chapter Forty-Eight: PEI & Five Islands, 1997]


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Peter Landry