The Inlet by Helen Piddington (Harbour Publishing, 2001) is subtitled Memoir of a Modern Pioneer. Helen was born in 1931, that almost makes her a contemporary of mine. She’s an accomplished artist, and charcoal and pastel sketches became the basis of her book about remote log cabin life on a woodlot in Loughborough Inlet on Coastal BC’s mainland side of the Inside Passage.
Helen met her husband Dane while coastal cruising to the Queen Charlottes (Haida Gwaii). Dane is a professional photographer and writer. They figured they could continue their artistic careers away from city life, but soon learned that living on the coast required much more. Dane became a logger, prawn fisherman, and woodlot owner. Helen became an avid gardener and all-around countrywoman, preserving much of their own food for winter. Such is the way of living an independent, self-sustaining life.
|Cruising in Coastal BC|
Each short chapter gives you insight into daily life, history, the residents and visitors, boating, weather, logging, animals, and the joys and challenges of living in Loughborough Inlet. I enjoyed reading this memoir of a woman with the courage to switch from big city living, to a rewarding but more difficult remote lifestyle.
In 2010, Helen published a second memoir, Rumble Seat about growing up in the Victoria suburb of Esquimalt. To the best of my knowledge, Helen and Dane are still living in their remote home, and boaters continue to write about visiting them in Loughborough Inlet.
Do you know of any good books about Coastal BC, Canada, or remote living in general? I’d love to hear about your favourites.
For more exciting book reviews, head on over to Semicolon's Blog each weekend. -- Margy