Walter Panknin (1898 – 1977) and His Family Ch6 Part 12

Long Walks with Papa

Biene wrote this post.

Located near Essen is the beautiful lake Baldeney, a dammed reservoir of the Ruhr River.  It was the destination of one of our first family excursions on a sunny spring day.  It would become our favourite recreation spot.  Lake Baldeney has personal significance for me because it changed my life forever.  But I won’t get ahead of myself.

My dad, who loved nature and, above all, water sports, was delighted to have this jewel of a lake in our vicinity.   It would still take some effort to travel there by bus, but these outings were recreational highlights and brightened our otherwise drab existence in the Old House.

 My dad and I walked approximately 16 km distance through forests and fields a few times.  I felt very proud to keep up with my dad on these long hikes.  My brother, who was not fond of swimming in cold water and hated exertion, seldom accompanied us.

Papa Panknin and his Daughter Biene

My dad and I would often daydream about the future on those hikes.  We envision a beautiful home built on a hill surrounded by forests and overlooking a big lake.  Far, in the end, this dream would come true for me at the Arrow Lakes in Canada.  On his last visit to Canada before his death, my father experienced the fulfilment of our vision for a short time with us.

The first time we walked barefoot at the shore of Lake Baldeney, we were puzzled that our feet were sooty black even after a swim in the clear water.  At that time, the coal industry was still in total production, and there was heavy pollution around Essen.   As seen in these pictures, blue skies were rare in my childhood, but I appreciated it when we had them.

9 Replies to “Walter Panknin (1898 – 1977) and His Family Ch6 Part 12”

  1. Biene, it was wonderful that you and your father could enjoy the beauty of this lake together. All the effort that it took to get there was well worth the effort. Your home that you live in at the Arrow Lakes, stands as a fulfillment of the dreams sparked in your childhood. Enjoy the beauty surrounding you!

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  2. How good that you grabbed all the good moments you could get! Funny enough, it was also my father and I, who would go exploring, when out in nature, while my mother and brother stayed behind.
    I am glad that he came to see you in Canada and could experience your home and the Arrow Lake.

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