Last night started innocuously enough. Voluntary attendance at a wine and cheese reception at our local museum which focuses on settlement in the Ottawa Valley - from the Ice Age onwards. (http://www.champlaintrailmuseum.com) It's a little gem of a collection which includes a pioneer church, a little red school house, square timber home, heritage gardens and a series of lifestyle vignettes, depicting the various tortures we have invented in the name of health, hygiene and beauty.
One these vignettes is an 1930's beauty (and I use the term loosely) parlour. In it, a mannequin is sitting in a chair with this, this... contraption attached to her head. It shows how the hair is wound around rods, and the end of each rod is an electrical outlet, which is attached via wire to a ring above the woman. When all is wound up and ready to go, it's plugged in and voila! If you're very lucky, your hair is permanently frizzy, and you may experience tingly sensations on your head forever, and if you're not very lucky, you're dead! Doomed to looking like a plastic dummy the rest of your life and living in a vignette at the Champlain Trail Museum. Look at this thing!! I mean, who in their right mind would ever subject themselves to this self inflicted torture! Completely loonie.
There's another vignette that is not for the faint of heart, or anyone with a toothache. It shows an early dentist's office. The electrified dental drill is next to the fully upright, locked and loaded leather dental chair, the arms of which are curiously worn right through to the steel beneath. Just looking at this foot powered instrument of pain is enough to make me grit my teeth. I completely understand now the little poem my ex-husband, who just happens to be a , you guessed it, dentist, used to recite: First you find 'em, then you drill 'em, then you fill 'em, then you bill 'em. (if you don't kill 'em. Ed.) I'm at a floss for words here.
Having quenched our thirst for knowledge of yesteryear, and white wine from Point Pelee, we took our leave, and headed home and so to bed. And that would have been the end of this story, if at 3:00 am I wasn't suddenly awake and feeling like I was in a surround sound theatre listening to maniacal laughter. Mad, electrified woman with curly hair? No. But close! A laughing, whooping, yodeling, partying flock of loons...right outside the bedroom window...which is entirely possible because the river is so high right now, and only about 5 feet of beach remains between river and ark. It was absolutely amazing! (and very loud) They were singing their hearts out...and did so for about an hour -maybe longer, but I eventually fell back asleep. This morning -real morning now, 8:30 ish there were four loons swimming out front...quietly. Resting their vocal chords for the next concert. I hope.
Total loonie tunes!!