THE DOMAINE POLANA

The Domaine Polana

Par Marie-France Prayal

One could be very contented living in a very nice home, on a mature forest residential lot with access to a fantastic lake and only 25 minutes from downtown Halifax but we always wanted to return to the country; something we promised to do since leaving the farm in Quebec.  So in the spring of every year, we head out, looking for the place just right for us.  Our search criteria consisted of finding woods, fields, nice country, a house off the beaten track far from the road BUT not too far from the city! We had a tall order, with many requirements and although we found a number of possibilities, there was always something missing.

 Then two years ago, in June 2002, coming back from one of these forays, we found a very interesting property. From the roadside sign we took the real estate agent’s number and the following day we paid a visit. Pleased with what we saw and it was not long before making our decision, even if it was bound to be another big adventure for the our now teenage daughters, the dogs and us! 

 10 months later we started to move into our new `domaine``, taking time to do some renovations and for the girls, to finish their school year. Things such as a big fenced in yard for the dogs and 1800 sq.ft. of ceramic tile to replace the carpets, were the two most important items on our renovation list.

May 1, 2003 I moved in with the dogs while Lary tended to the house in Halifax and the girls who were finishing their school year. As for the dogs; what a nice yard to play!!!! Immediately, the dogs and we fell in love with the place. By summer, we were all feeling very comfortable in our new environment. 

 Let me describe it. First, a long 200m maple-shaded driveway that leads up to a special house, built over several decades with a mix of new and old, lots of outbuildings, all with plenty of work for the handyman and women.  And, a doggy room!  A huge room with 2 sets of patio doors with direct access to a fenced yard, along with a ``doggy bathroom… ``.  True to its Polish origins, the Domaine Polana is a house in a clearing of fields surrounded by acres of woods.

It took some time for the girls to discover the benefits of living in the boonies (but that’s another story) but for Lary and I, it felt like we had always lived here. We set out to discover the fields and forest.  One of my first of many adventures was when I discovered many yellow Cotons playing in the yard full of dandelions.  The day after, the yellow Cotons became greens after playing in the freshly mowed yard and true to their reputation, they were white again few days later.

Another day, I was taking a walk in a field with ET and Markie who were bounding through the tall grass, when I suddenly spied a little black creature with a white stripe on it back and tail.  Needless to say, I quickly retreated to the house hoping that the dogs would follow me without question and they did!

10 months have flown by! Our first kennel stud Zoo passed away the day before Christmas and he now rests on the top of the hill under a big beautiful pine tree where I know he will always watch over us as all, as good shepherd dogs do!

I will never forget the words from Warren, our common sense, amiable contractor, said to us, "You need a donkey to keep the coyotes away and don’t forget, you are now living in the country; you can do as you please!"

After Hurricane Juan and White Juan, the snowstorm of the century, we are definitively well integrated into our rural setting.  As one journalist wrote in a local Halifax newspaper, "The Woodville woman" and her family are looking forward to many more adventures with their 4-legged friends in Nova Scotia’s Rawdon Hills.