Grapevine Online Exclusive

Published September 2011.

Web Exclusive: Helpless in Ontario

An Irishwoman travels to Ontario to find the program of Alcoholics Anonymous

"Today I am grateful to my Canadian AA friends for getting my unsteady feet on the path to recovery and to self-discovery."

There is a town in north Ontario
With dream comfort memory to spare
In my mind I still need a place to go
All my changes were there
—"Helpless" by Neil Young

The sense of misdirection slowly swelled in my belly as I cruised along the N7 heading west out of Peterborough, Ontario. The early afternoon sun shone directly on my face through the windscreen as I scanned the roadsides for familiar landmarks. I looked old-world store I had spotted on the way in to attend the Intergroup AA meeting in Cameron Street, Peterborough. It was called something like, "The Goosey Gander"? "Wander in for a Gander"? "Collectables and Antiques - take a gander"?

-- Deirdre S.

Enniskerry, Wicklow, Ireland

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