Newsletter June 2020

Summer is a time for joyful renewal in Canada. This year, it seems that more people than ever are seeking a nature-based retreat as a way to counter the stress and strain of our weeks of lockdown due to COVID-19. It’s been a very difficult year for many. We are putting together summer plans in the midst of much uncertainty about what government restrictions will stay in place, and what this will mean for the cottage rental season. 

As Fancy Free’s owners, we want to ensure complete compliance with government regulations on the use of cottages over the summer. We have modified our procedures so that when the way is clear for our guests to come, they will be safe, and they in turn will keep those around them in the Rideau Lakes community safe as well. Since this year is an exceptional one, we have loosened our cancellation policy to make sure that our guests will not be out of pocket if they (or we) need to cancel as a result of a COVID-related change in plans. 

One thing that is certain is that summer is coming, and it will be beautiful. So to put you in a summer mood, we’ve gathered together some photos from our album that show Fancy Free in June, which is one of the most spectacular months of the year. 

First, with an island cottage it’s all about the water. Big Rideau Lake’s water levels are controlled by Parks Canada using the dams and locks in the Rideau Canal system. In the spring, the water level is allowed to rise to let the spring meltwater work its way through the system.

The water level changes a lot during the course of the year, with the spring having the highest water level and the fall having the lowest. Here’s a shot of Fancy Free Island in late May, when the water is high enough to wash over the front dock but the back docks stay clear. You can see Fancy Free’s boathouse clearly and just catch a glimpse of the cottage through the trees. 

Fancy Free island with boathouse at right

The channel between Fancy Free and the mainland is at its most beautiful during the quiet weeks of spring and early summer. We see loons and merganser ducks here, and sometimes we’ll hear the cry of the osprey overhead, fishing in the channel. 

The Channel

What would country living be without the delights of down home cooking? We like to stop at the local markets like Coutt’s Country Store outside of Perth to get some  delicious, freshly made baked goods as well as locally sourced eggs, meats and vegetables from the nearby family farms. Here’s a shot of Coutt’s strawberry-rhubarb pie with maple butter and bread.

Then it’s back to the cottage for a rest on the porch…

…with a glimpse of the hummingbirds, newly returned from the tropics, at the porch feeder…

…and a canoe ride after supper…

… with a beautiful sunset to end the day.

I hope these photos have put you in the languid, mellow frame of mind that typifies cottages in summer. If you would like to be on our newsletter list, just drop us a line. Have a safe and healthy June!

Pamela and Tom Gough

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