Dinner at Horseshoe Resort

august 8 2009

There’s golf, skiing and snowboarding here and a treetop canopy tour I won’t have time to do but would’ve liked to.  This test is really helping in designing my cross-country trip.

Here’s an old Keri trick for you when traveling alone: because most people at such a place have come with friends or family, befriend the staff who live and work in the area.  They’ll be insightful as to what local things you should be seeing before you leave, and they are usually good at partying too.  

And you can’t beat fun for a good time.  

Exploring an Abandoned Military Base

I made it in and out without getting caught.  It was amazing and my heart almost beat out my chest.  I’ll update this post soon, first I gotta grab screenshots of it all from my Flip and that takes a bit of time.  

Reconnaissance Mission

Tomorrow we’re going to explore the old CFB Edgar Military Base, a radar station that in 1952-64 was part of NORAD and the Pinetree Line radar stations.  It’s atop the highest hill in the area and visible from CFB Bordon, our largest training facility in our army and where the ‘Royal Canadian Air Force’ was founded.

august 7 2009

Found it by navigating towards that tower, top left, and bottom left is the view as you pull into the front gate.  And wave to the guard while keeping that blank look on your face (top right, aka, my spy face) and do an 800 point turn while soaking up as much information as you can about the place.  

Seems to be just one guard on duty who has a car and probably patrols with it once an hour (guessing) and you know that sound a radio makes when your cel is about to ring? My radio was doing that.  So there’s communications happening here, but to where and whom? Or is that what it’s from?  Does it really matter?  No.

It was converted into a rehab centre for disabled adults after it was no longer needed for radar things.  And according to my research it is one of the only abandoned places in Ontario (maybe even Canada) which has a bowling alley.  That’s our goal: find the bowling alley.  Slightly right and through the forest in the photo bottom right, that’s our entry point.

Exploring Orillia

august 7 2009

En route I passed that building top right… that’s the OPP Headquarters.  Two quick facts – the OPP is one of three provincial police forces (what happens in the other provinces then?) and two, on the cover art for the Beatles Sgt. Pepper album you can see Paul wearing an OPP patch on his arm, click here to see.  Also, Orillia was the first city in North America to institute daylight savings time.

Rode my bike around downtown, found the Orillia Opera House (bottom left) then went back down to the water and that’s me there upon the realization I’m totally effed; there’s no way I’m gonna be able to explore a city in a day.  Like, between all the people / places / things I could easily spend a week here, with two whole days spent searching for the underground tunnels rumoured to be everywhere below the city.  And look for the ghosts in the Opera House.  And and and.  I’d figured a month/province.  

Moreover, I’m trying to promote these places not kick them in the teeth, but looking at it from the city’s citizens perspective it’d be like, “hmph… how can this girl think she can see everything there is to see here in a couple days? How rude”.  And they’d be right.

Then dinner on a patio where the older gentleman I sat next to at the tiki bar wanted to talk about… how much he loves Canada.  We put the world to rights over my club sandwich. He’d been to every province / territory and driven the Arctic ice bridge three times.  So where’s the photo of us?  Didn’t take one, didn’t mention this show, it’s my week off, maybe shoulda sucked it up, didn’t.

This Church is a Big Deal

august 7 2009

The Oro African Methodist Episcopal Church is a National Historic Site, which is the “last built remnant of African Canadian community uniquely rooted in the history of United Empire Loyalists”.  

It’s also rumoured it was the most northern stop on the famous Underground Railroad.

My New Home

august 7 2009

I’m at Carriage Hills Resort, click on that link to see the layout of my place, which I spread my stuff out over the whole of it.  

I’m in Oro-Medonte, which is between Barrie and Orillia and probably a better winter versus summer destination, since when I asked the lady at the desk where the closet place to swim was the answer was a 20 minute drive.  I did not ask her for directions to tomorrow’s exploration, no need to alert anyone where that’s happening.

And I’m Off

august 7 2009

Put my bike in the backseat, packed a small bag, and I decided to run this test only with photos, no video; less pressure on me.  And that’s my exit, number 111.  Which is kinda odd because it’s my special number.

Another Day, Another Abandoned Building

august 6 2009

It’s an old linseed, aka flax seed, oil factory in Sorauren Avenue Park.  It’s in the middle of Toronto’s Polish community and they’ve been trying to have it turned into a community centre for years, click here to read about their efforts.

There’s really nothing inside, just a bunch of graffiti.  And let it be noted that I don’t walk with such swagger, I’m in the middle of tripping over something.

Well HOW Lucky is This

It was confirmed today that there is a condo/cottage north of Barrie waiting empty for me, totally gratis.  My friend’s dad had to leave early so my friend called and said he’d arrange for the keys to be hidden and waiting.  

Because of the short notice no one I invited was able to come along, but actually this is better because I’m going to use this opportunity as “Test 2” in my latest plan for this show. 

I sat down and a couple hours later got up with directions and an itinerary for Friday to Sunday.  It takes that long to research explorations I find, even though I’ve been at this for a couple years now.  Cross referencing crap is time consuming.  Must remember to factor that into my cross-country schedule. august 6 2009

On the left is what my screen looks like when I sit down and start – a basic Google map of the area, and then I start pulling up bookmarked sites, like GhostTowns.com, and on the right is what it looks like when I’m done, a small handful of printouts.

Me Today

august 6 2009

Have fannypack, will travel.  Also, my new thing is putting my lock around my waist, streamliiiiined.