This blog contains a funny story and a few pics of my book launch! And tour dates for the new book Window Shopping for God.


Float Your Boat:

Another Mother’s Day is in the rearview mirror. This time of year always brings me back to a time I lived on Amherst Island.

It was a Saturday before Mother’s Day and when I pulled onto the ferry, one of the guys who worked on the boat asked me to help two young men whose boat had capsized on the north shore. These two Queen’s students had planned to row from Kingston to Toronto as some ill-fated end-of-year challenge.

After talking to them briefly, I agreed I could drive them to the bus station since I was driving to Kingston anyway. They grabbed their sleeping bags, backpacks and two big plastic bags, and headed toward my car.

“Where is your boat by the way?”

“Here” He raised the big plastic Walmart bags to show me a deflated yellow dingey.

These two 19-year-olds in all their youthful wisdom, decided to paddle from Kingston to Toronto as some end-of-first-year celebration. And they had decided to paddle in a dingy. Not a Zodiak. But a dingey in a great lake. This proves the soft spot in their head had not fully hardened.

Bedraggled, stinky and worn out they climbed in the back of my vehicle so now I became the chauffeur of these two guys- Beavis and Butthead.

As we left the ferry and headed to the station they told me, “It took us three days to paddle out of Kingston Harbour because rain and waves pushed us back, not once but twice but we kept at it”

I felt like saying the universe was trying to tell you to stay put.

“Then 5 days later we managed to paddle against the current to some small island and pitch our tent. That night a storm came up and collapsed the tent and when they got out soaking wet the tent blew away so they sat shivering, freezing until daylight.

When I asked them why they didn’t call the coastguard, this was their response. “Oh, we didn’t want to waste our phone battery.” T

After more waves and paddling, they made it to the north shore of Amherst Island and unbeknownst to them they had crashed on the property of Poplar Dell, the Bnb.

“Why didn’t you go to the house and ask for help?”

“We didn’t want to bother them.”

“But it was a B and B,

“But we didn’t want to waste money.”

“Did you not have a credit card?’

“Yes, but it’s our parent’s card — it was only for emergencies.” ”

Boy oh boy. This is evidence that kids this age should not be given loans or credit cards. They were lucky they didn’t get into the open lake past Amherst Island, as this outcome would have been very different. One upheaval and the water would have frozen them solid within minutes.

“You two aren’t that bright are you?” I razzed them all the way and thankfully they kept laughing.

When I pulled into the bus station they grabbed their stuff but I got out and followed them.

“I’m coming with you to help you get your ticket..”We know how to buy a ticket, Deb.”

“Do you?” I repeated it. “Do you? I don’t think you two know much. Let’s get you some food.”

“We are not hungry.”

“Yes, you are. You don’t know it but you are.” I bought them granola bars, sandwiches and a couple of coffees which they quickly made work of. When we said our goodbyes, I added,  “One more thing. It’s Mother’s Day. Don’t tell your mom the full story. Wait till Monday, she won’t question her mothering skills with the likes of you.”

“Okay, Okay Deb.”



I was laughing and turned back and asked one more question.

“By the way what’s your major in school? ”


Of course, it is.

P.S. After writing this a friend told me the statue in Queen’s building is a cement canoe so perhaps this story isn’t as ridiculous as you think.



The launch was so perfect for me. It included great conversation and reading with some of my favourite people in the world coming to support it.

This week I did 17 back-to-back interviews on CBC Radio ( across Canada) which was a blast. I went from Yellowknife to St. John’s and then back to Kelowna without leaving my chair.

Next stop June 8th, BOOK SIGNING 3:30-5 pm at Books on Main( Bath, ON) ( PLEASE RSVP here as we have limited room!)