• James Parry

Parrywinkle, August 10, 2017


PHOTO BY SONIA LA RONDE

With the help of Whitlock member Dave McAleer holding the megaphone, Father Roland Demers got the tournament off to a great start with his memorable blessing.

Ah, 'tis good to be back dear readers after our three-week vacation here at YLJ. During which my beautiful Sunshine and I headed on down to Trump Land. More specifically, beautiful York Long Beach, Maine, our summer home-away-from-home for the past 25 years. Same hotel, same room, same friends there at that time of year, great weather, and a jolly good time had by one and all.

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FAKE NEWS DISSEMINTOR? - Some differences we noticed this time around, however. Far fewer Quebec and Canadian license plates. Landmark restaurants along the immediate coastline either closed for definite or closing earlier than in previous years. Hotels and motels facing serious staffing problems. The reason being, I was told by local businesspeople, is that they have found it difficult, if not impossible, to hire local students or young people willing to work during the summer season in a community, much like Hudson, that is considered to be full of big homes and affluent parents.

Ergo, a major influx of people who are coming from Jamaica and Romania. There on a six-month travel visa, having taken out a bank loan of upwards of $3000 for the privilege and immediately payable back upon their departure presumably with interest. Some of them even working long hours and holding down two jobs with the full approval of their respective employers. And respectful, thankful, and courteous every minute of it!

In my non-partisan opinion, it says a lot about Trump's imploding immigration bans, Make America Great Again campaign, and more jobs for Americans over and above coal miner promises. But then what do I know?

Sheesh, when I mentioned to them that here in Hudson and environs young serious students were lining up in droves to work during the summer either at the local supermarket, restaurants, golf clubs, community swimming pools, gardening companies, or whatever, they almost accused me of being the disseminator of fake news. Crikey, YLJ now ranked up - or down - depending upon your perspective, with Wolf Blitzer and Anderson Cooper on CNN. Go figure!

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AMAZING COMMUNITY - As I've said before and will surely say again, it's always great to travel and discover different horizons, but it's always good to be home again. And particularly this past weekend, just in time for the super two-day Hudson Street Fair. Must say I loved the comment of first-time visitor and new Hudsonite recently arrived from Shropshire, England, James Wood, who told me, “Wow, this is absolutely marvelous James. What an amazing community event. So many exhibitors and so many people from elsewhere discovering what a great little town we live in. I'm already looking forward to next year!”

Also the launch of the magnificent and multi-faceted Hudson Music Festival continuing through this Saturday, August 12. The great gala dinner of the Cunningham's - Whitlock Community Golf Classic - played this past June - at Whitlock Golf and Country Club with significant cheques being presented to three local worthwhile causes. And, at the very same location just two days later, the Father Roland Demers’ golf tournament, auction, and dinner raising funds for urgently needed repairs to St. Thomas Aquinas Church. (See photos on our Facebook page).

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BLESSING OF THE BALLS – I must say that Whitlock witnessed history in the making Monday afternoon when, just prior to tee-off time and to the delight of the participants assembled below with their golf carts, Father Roland Demers, appeared on the club balcony for what can only be dubbed as a most humourous and good-natured Blessing of the Balls. I'm sure you could have heard the applause and laughter at the furthest hole!

And what a round of applause there was when at the end of the evening, attended by many special guests - including Bishop Noël Simard of the Diocese of Valleyfield, Vaudreuil-Soulanges, MP Peter Schiefke, literally just returned from representing Prime Minister Justin Trudeau at a conference in Nigeria, Rigaud Mayor Hans Gruenwald, and St. Lazare Mayor Robert Grimaudo - when auctioneer Michael Lawrence announced in his inimitable style that over $60,000 had been raised and still counting!

And that's a wrap!

E-mail: creation@videotron.ca

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