Early one recent weekend evening, as the sun was going down behind the trees and the western sky glowed faintly pink, I happened to look out a west-facing window of the Manse and was struck by something. It was: that what I was seeing at that moment was exactly the same view as what someone standing in the same place in this old house would have seen a hundred years and more ago.
Okay, maybe some of the trees may be higher. But that particular view across our back yard and up the hill to the bell tower on the old one-room schoolhouse and the steeple of the former St. Henry’s Roman Catholic Church would be essentially the same as it ever had been – or at least since the school was built (on the site of an earlier school) in 1901. (St. Henry’s was built in 1878.) I don’t think, with the possible exception of an outhouse on this property or the neighbouring one, there ever would have been any other buildings to alter the view.
That was kind of an odd feeling. Not spooky or anything, but maybe a tiny bit eerie – to wonder who before me of all the ministers’ families who have lived at the Manse since it was brand new in 1888 might have stood just where I was standing and glanced out that window on a similar early spring evening, and seen just what I saw.
I guess it’s continuity, isn’t it? Hey – do you suppose anyone over all those years ever wondered who might see the same view as he or she was seeing, sometime in the future? Like, as far into the future as 2014? I wonder.