Inside the B.C. Interior

If you live far from BC, there’s a fair chance that you only know the BC coast, especially Vancouver and Victoria. If so, you’re missing a very different part of Canada. I know it because my brother-in-law Peter and his wife Heather live in Kelowna, which draws us there often. They were among the more than 200 people who lost their homes when the great firestorm of 2003 swept into town. After our success in publishing The Ice Storm, we at M&S knew how to rush out books about Canadian natural disasters, cold or hot, East or West, so by enlisting the help of the Kelowna Daily Courier we swiftly brought out Firestorm: The Summer B.C. Burned.
As I say in Across Canada By Story: “It raised lots of money for reclamation projects, although it was nothing compared with the estimated 250 million trees lost in the fire.”
In September I tried to (ahem) set the house on fire in the Okanagan College Theatre in Kelowna, where a polite audience, not all of them relatives, watched the very first public performance of my new power-point stage show, “Across Canada By Story”. It went well enough, and the fire brigade was not involved. The organiser, the tireless author and teacher John Lent, then outdid himself by arranging another show for me THE VERY NEXT DAY in Vernon.
Three points there. The drive from Kelowna to Vernon shows the Okanagan (pronounced “awe-gan”) at its very best. High, dry hills roll down to scenic lakes, with irrigated fields producing apples and wine-bearing grapes and many lesser fruits and vegetables. One of the towns along the way is now named simply “Lake Country”, although Vernon itself now has around 50, 000 people. Second, the show was held at the fairly new Okanagan College Vernon campus, surely the most beautiful campus in all of Canada, perched high above Kalamalka Lake. And third, the afternoon show revealed that the area is now rich in writers, including my old friend, the fine poet Sharon Thesen.
Finally, a quick trip into Vernon reminded me that we were now in Across Canada By Story territory. Signs there directed us to Nelson, where Jane and I had greatly enjoyed our time at the Elephant Mountain Literary Festival, before driving west into the breathtaking scenery of the BC Interior.


4 comments on “Inside the B.C. Interior

  1. Leslie Nadon says:

    Hi, Douglas. I am always amazed at how connected we seem to be. I have a niece who is a reporter – photographer at the Ash -Cache Creek Journal {not sure of the name of the paper} She lives in Cashe Creek, and works nearby in Ashcroft B.C. I hope you are well. I have a few relatives in B.C. I have relatives everywhere from East to West and North to South in Canada. If I ever get my book published, “Teddy Bears and IV Therapy”, I will be able to do a book tour. It is always nice to hear from you and hopefully our paths will cross again someday, somewhere. I have recently finished my second rough draft of my book and am working with a couple of different book clubs here in Windsor, Ontario. Sincere regards, Leslie Nadon.

  2. Ron Hearnden says:

    Doug I enjoy you emails the trouble is that I have to depend on JANE BERGES SEND THEM TO ME which I then send on to Linda Mason in Picton


    We are awaiting your touring schedule for Western Ontario so we can get our copies of your new book from you (Heather Reisman does not need the money )Will you include the tour Surely the Bookshelf has contacted you already I can offer bed and breakfast and a super dinner since Kaye is no longer with us I have two spare bedrooms

    • Douglas Gibson says:

      Hello, Ron,
      I’m glad that you’re following me through the blog.
      I think that the blog’s front page will help you to register your email , and everything should follow from there.
      I hope that the good people at The Bookshelf will bring me to Guelph, but I have no definite date yet. Call them up as a customer who is desperately keen to see this fellow Gibson who, you understand, now has a new show , based on his new book.
      Good luck!

      • Ron Hearnden says:

        I will contact the bookshelf on Tuesday They know me and my past in the book business great people

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