Yeah, it’s been a while. Sorry about that. I’ve ended up fairly busy with a bunch of things, including becoming part of the ASD Advisory Board of the recently formed Autism Canada, and also of the Canadian Autism Partnership Project. The latter of which was what let me come to Nova Scotia (see tagÂûght’s Blog: Leaving, On a Jet Plane; Two Wonderful Sisters; and Nova Scotia, How I Love Thee for the details and explanations).
The important part is that in coming here to Nova Scotia, I got to spend a great deal of time with my middle sister and her children, and meet her friends, and it’s been great. I’ve even tonight got to see my older cousin for the first time in ages.
I don’t know whether I mentioned this or not – I might have only mentioned it on the tagAught blog – but I’m currently in a program run by Eastern Health (the section of the Newfoundland health system that covers the eastern part of the island) where I live in a house with housemates for about a year or so, learning the life skills that I lack (for which we have a life skills instructor), and then move on to an apartment. It’s a carefully regulated program, and it’s already started making a difference for me. (The only thing is that I go back to my parents’ on the weekend, because otherwise Imber and I would miss each other two much – no pets are allowed in the house, because of potential allergies and potential issues with cleanup.)
Anyway, our current life skills instructor made the suggestion that we might want to take the occasional outing as a house (AKA her and our housemates), just to have some interesting things happen and bond as housemates. So a rec budget is being set up, but in the meantime, since our current life skills instructor is leaving at the end of this week, she suggested we go somewhere free. So yesterday, we took off to Salmonier Nature Park, which is an educational centre and a wildlife rehabilitation park. They take in wild animals who are injured, most of whom are native to Newfoundland and Labrador (I say “most” because moose are not actually native here; they were imported by a British governor in 1912 who was looking for a hunting challenge), and help them. If they’re able to be fully healed, they are then released back into the wild where they are found; if they’re too damaged to survive in the wild, but still able to live they’re placed in the park; and if they’re way too damaged, they’re put down.
Salmonier Nature Park is about an hour’s drive from St. John’s, with no gravel roads (except the short driveway/entrance to the park), and the walk around the rehabilitation area (which is actually only a small part of the park itself) takes about an hour as well. It was a pleasant drive out, and despite the threat of light rain, we only got sprinkled on a tiny bit as we were walking through (despite having to drive through a short downpour on our way there!). While we were going through, I took pictures of every animal we managed to see with my cell phone. *grins*