Almost the second decade of the century
And an eventful time in Ottawa and London

D-Day for RED at Hog's Back, Ottawa

Paul and Katharine
This is a shot taken inside Elgin Starbucks, on Saturday, March 21st., 2009
Almost my birthday, and almost three weeks since RED (Raymond Ernest Dickins) died in the ICU at Ottawa General.
Both of us are/were upset about all of that.

RED died on March 2nd.

The above images are self-explanatory, and the card was received on April 28th., 2009.
The message that RED was highly respected as a teacher is a moving tribute.

Below, another excellent email:
From: Glen Harris []
Sent: Thursday, April 30, 2009 12:55
To: Paul Dickins
Cc: Glen & Carole Harris
Subject: Ray Dickins

Hello Paul: We were sad to hear your father passed away on March 2nd.
We were pleased to see him last September in Canada, we enjoyed the meal and a lovely chat with your Father.
We thought he was marvelous for his age, he remember the sign language. He was a very popular man in Edgbaston School.
He was a very good woodwork teacher. I have learned a lot from him. I loved woodwork, I have made lot of things through my lifetime..
On behalf of our boys and girls they all say he was a brilliant teacher and very patient with all of us.
My wife Carole remembers your Father when he went to Needwood School near Burton on Trent.
We give our condolence to you and your family.
Is there anything you wish to tell us about his life, we will put the news in our next EOPA Newsletter in the Autumn.
All best wishes,
Glen and Carole Harris

As an aside: Lynn, my sister, was an excellent teacher, who rose to become deputy head.
Me, I am different: no patience, cantankerous, not a teacher.
Takes all kinds, what?

Another child, a girl, was born in Londinium, outside the walls, as it were, in the middle of April.
The author of this site is battling with the paperwork and other matters relating to RED.
Latent problems will eventually be dealt with.

Photographs were emailed from London, and here they are:
The little girl will be named shortly.
The poor quality shots were taken by Sarah's mother on a cell phone.
Not to worry, other images will arrive later on.
Here are, variously, Sarah, Prasannavira, Rhea and Madame X.

On May 1st., of populist worker fame and importance, I received a phone call and an email.
Madame X is to be known as Phoebe Padma Joy Linney.
Phoebe means radiance, plus Phoebe and Rhea are Titan sisters.
Padma means Lotus in Buddhism, a symbol of wisdom and compassion
arising out of the experiences of life.
Joy, oddly, means joy.
According to Prasannavira, Linney means whatever it means.
Nice that everything is now settled, somewhere.


This card was received a little while ago, probably early May. It should be easily read, but I can place the text here if required.

Here are two images from long ago, when RED worked at inculcating excellent skills in his pupils.

Ashes of Raymond Ernest Dickins dispersed
Saturday, June 20th., 2009

People met at the Starbucks store on Elgin by the school.
Marc, with his two kids, came in to offer his respects: much appreciated.
Doug lost the address, but arrived just as we had given up on him: his lady, Deb has a twisted ankle, so couldn't join in.

Ashes were taken to the Hog's Back falls, South Ottawa.
Concurrently, the Dragon Boat races were on.
The parking situation was bad, but we all arrived and eventually found ourselves on the bank of the river.
The ashes were taken from the container and all of us, those present, took turns casting them into the water.
A sad time, but necessary.

I read this poem to the assembly, in lieu of a prayer, something from Rudyard Kipling:


They shut the road through the woods
Seventy years ago.
Weather and rain have undone it again.
And now you would never know
There was once a road through the woods
Before they planted the trees.
It is underneath the coppice and heath,
And the thin anemones.
Only the keeper sees
That, where the ring-dove broods,
And the badgers roll at ease,
There was once a road through the woods.

Yet, if you enter the woods
Of a summer evening late,
When the night-air cools on the trout-ringed pools
Where the otter whistles his mate.
(They fear not men in the woods,
Because they see so few)
You will hear the beat of a horse's feet,
And the swish of a skirt in the dew,
Steadily cantering through
The misty solitudes,
As though they perfectly knew
The old lost road through the woods . . .
But there is no road through the woods!

Michelle, Katharine,
Doug, Jacques, Terry

Downriver from the slabbed rock bank.
The ashes, still visible, light grey, in the shallow water.
I doubt that they will be there for long.

Missing were George and Deb: both ill or injured.
Other members of the family told me that they would be remembering
Raymond Ernest Dickins at this time.

Below, we eventually reached the pool-side area:
we were on the rocks below the white triangle itself below the top end of the white, rushing falls, immediately above the Hog's Back Rd
The Dragon Races were being held in the "lake" below the Hog's Back Road.
The parking lots were all taken. A couple of us parked beyond Riverside Drive, some elsewhere!

On June 24th I decided to return and take a few shots: hot, sunny day, and I visited late morning.
I took the No 3 bus which travels via Preston (if it were not blocked by road works) and alighted at
Prince of Wales Drive and Meadowlands/Hog's Back Road (refer to the image above). I checked the times of return buses before
walking past the canal, to the left of Colonel By Dr., and visited as can be seen below. Took only a
short time and, I think, illuminates the spot a little better than above.

1st left is the canal, with the locks, seen from Hog's Back Road.
2nd is looking north, downstream from the left bank past the railings.
3rd is a view across the inlet towards the step down where we dispersed the ashes.
4th shows the Mallard pair, having ducklings beyond (unseen), the edge of the step down hardly visible.
The last shot is what is in the water a few days past the event.

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