Flo Anderson and her husband Trevor worked as lightkeepers for 20 years, at Lennard Island and then at Barrett Rock, McInnis Island, Green Island and Race Rocks. In this extraordinary memoir Anderson speaks candidly about the challenges of learning to live on an exposed, isolated island where precipitous cliffs and gale-force winds were everday hazards. She also describes the profound joys of living with family in a wild and natural place.
Imagine yourself living in complete isolation. Imagine living where there are no stores or mail delivery, no doctors; where there are no schools, leaving you responsible for your children's education; and where treacherous cliffs and gale-force winds are a part of everyday life.
This is the life of a lightkeeper as it is vividly recorded by Flo Anderson in her book Lighthouse Chronicles: Twenty Years on the BC Lights . The frustration and the exhilaration, the lonesome seclusion and the peaceful solitude - it's all here in this memoir of one woman's experience of living on the lights and raising her family there.
In 1961 Anderson, her husband Trevor and their four children left a life of relative comfort and convenience in Vancouver and moved to Lennard Island, a rocky, windswept light station off the west coast of Vancouver Island. The Andersons worked as lightkeepers for the next twenty years, at Lennard and then at Barrett Rock, McInnis Island, Green Island (BC's northernmost lighthouse) and Race Rocks (BC's southernmost).
In Lighthouse Chronicles Anderson captures the essence of this lifestyle. She speaks candidly about the challenges of learning to live on an exposed, isolated island the size of a city block, where, to get through the day, a family has no one to depend upon - except each other. She describes the essential, exacting work of lightkeeping, which will soon become a lost art. She also describes the profound joys of living with a family in a wild and beautiful place - enjoying the tranquillity of hidden coves and private beaches, looking out over a storm-tossed sea blanketed with foam, and watching her children discover, firsthand, the natural wonders of the BC coast.