Day Two: Canadian Children’s Book Week 2013

This is the second instalment about my week long tour for TD Canadian Children’s Book Week 2013. I toured in northern Saskatchewan. More on Book Week here. Catch up on instalment one here.

Monday May 6, 2013
Boy was I nervous. Not about the presentations themselves but about finding where I needed to be. On time. Sure enough I missed one of the turns, but I pulled a U-ey (they seem okay with U turns in SK, in contrast to here where you feel like a criminal if you sneak one in…not that I ever do, heh heh). But my minor detour meant I saw a real live magpie at the side of the road. That was cool!

Dirt roads! I love dirt roads. (Okay so it’s gravel really.)

I was a total tourist as I was driving. What a fascinating landscape–so different from what I live in. I took a lot of pictures without even looking, just balancing the camera on my shoulder or the dash. I never new how the photo turned out till later.

There was still snow in the hedgerows.

Made it to my first school: South Corman Park School. They’d put a lovely silk rose, water bottle, and “Welcome Lizann” sign on the table at the front of the school library. They’d also put a sign above the water fountain announcing my coming visit so the kids could see it. Talk about making me feel welcome. And what a beautiful library space! What a great audience to start my tour! I spoke to the whole school, about 100 kids up to grade 6. They gave me a lovely gift of a Saskatchewan magnet and school pen. Thank you Joan Falk and all the kids at South Corman Park!

My visit poster & fountain

(As a footnote for the week, I wish I’d take some photos of/with kids at some or all of my visits, but I didn’t. It’s tricky putting photos of kids on the internet because you need parental permission. Still, although you won’t see the kids here in these posts, they were there! And if you were there and want to send me some photos I can use, I’d love that.)

My first tour stop.

Then it was off to find Allan, Saskatchewan. More great scenery of course!

Flat fields!
I loved seeing red barns! I was able to get close to this one.

And then something really different appeared on the horizon. A pink mountain!! I snapped a quick photo or two but had to keep going so I wouldn’t be late.

A pink mountain!
Potash mine at Allan, Saskatchewan

I got to Allan Composite School and Arlene Pedersen had a lovely mini sandwich and salad buffet for

Sign b/c the front door was being painted.

me in the home economics classroom. She told me that I had indeed seen a potash mine and that the pink mountain was made from the tailings from the mine.

What a great group of kids here, too. This school went all the way up to and through high school. I talked to the kids from Kindergarten to grade 5. I was telling them that I get a lot of inspiration from the amazing plants and animals I see around me, and mentioned that they have remarkable things around them too. I loved that they just about died laughing at me when I confessed I’d never before that day seen an actual magpie or a potash mine. Thank you Allan kids for a conclusion to a great day!

Before I left Allan I wanted to get a shot of the great grain elevators. Here’s the first photo.

And then guess what happened–I heard a train! I was so excited (I love trains). I got another shot with a train in it.

On the trek back to Saskatoon I had more time to take photos.

The other side of the pink mountain.
I’d often see ducks in these roadside ditches.

I loved the faint trail across the field.

Random Memorable Moments

  • Not being able to snap a photo of the colorful sorted display of tractors, combines and parts as I drove by Combine World.
  • Ducks everywhere! I kept seeing them in the temporary roadside ditch pools and sloughs, but I wasn’t able to get photos of any actual ducks.
  • Feeling rather dwarfed on the road in my compact rental car because SUVs and pickup trucks are popular Saskatchewan vehicles.
  • Hearing Macklemore’s “Thrift Shop” about 4 times on the satellite radio. I pretty much flipped between two stations. But I like that song so it was all good.

Random Saskatoon street. Bet it’s lovely when the trees leaf.

© Lizann Flatt,
No part of this blog may be used without written permission from the author.
By Lizann Flatt

Author of Flatt-out Fantastic Books for Kids