Story & Photo by Dan Davidson
Breakup 2013 is one that Dawne Mitchell won’t forget for a while. Winning $3,872 in the IODE Ice Pool is memorable enough, but other events will enhance the memory.
For one thing, she was there when the ice shifted and the tripod floated away. Standing on the boardwalk behind the Dänojà Zho Cultural Centre, Mitchell recalled the events of May 15.
“I came down after work and I was standing here for quite a while. Victor (Henry) and I were chatting with a whole bunch of people right here. I was standing right under the cable … and Victor said, ‘Oh, look, the cable’s starting to move.’”
Now the cable runs from the tripod in the river to the clock mounted on the side of the building, so when the tripod moves enough, the cable parts and stops the clock.
“The tripod started to lift, and I could see that, but I didn’t really connect it to breaking. Then all of a sudden it moved a bit more and then I heard the ‘ping!’ off the clock.”
She was so wrapped up in the moment of watching the ice and hearing the initial noise of the break-up that she forgot to look at her watch.
When she finally thought about it there were several people calling out different times, according to what their watches and cellphones were reading at the time.
The clock was sealed up with red caution tape and the IODE’s Joyce Caley, who had not heard the fire siren, was still at home, so no one knew what the official time was. When a couple of people made as if they were going to take the tape off and look, Dänojà Zho manager Glenda Bolt warned them off in a mock stern voice.
Mitchell went home, but half an hour or so later, feeling curious, she called Caley on the phone and asked what the time had been.
And that was the first that the surprised Caley knew that the ice had broken.