Canadians Drive Two Days To Help

"Well, there's eight of us came down. Two day drive. So we come down about twelve hours each day. But it was a nice drive," said Derek Mason, as he recalled the Biloxi road trip.

It's a two week working vacation for these neighbors from the north. The Canadian crew is tackling a home repair project on Nichols Street. For several, it's their second or third mission to Mississippi.

"We find it a worthwhile adventure. And it gives us a few days in the sun, if nothing else," said a smiling Mason, who helps lead the group.

"We left a couple feet of snow. And I hear it's snowed quite a bit since we left," he explained.

"Are we doing a good job?" Sandy Rachkey asked, as she busily painted trim boards.

Despite the distance, the place these visitors call home shares similarities with Biloxi. Tourism for instance.

"We live in cottage country. A great recreational area. It's a wonderful place to be, winter and summer. Very friendly people. There for each other," she said.

There for each other, and for strangers in need, a two day drive from home.

One of Canada's favorite sons serenades the visitors. Gordon Lightfoot echoes from the boom box.

"I'm a long way from home, and I miss my loved ones so," sings the Canadian, in an especially appropriate lyric for the visitors.

"No Shania Twain, but we do have Gordon Lightfoot," said Mason.

Gordon Lightfoot on the CD player, and a warm South Mississippi sun teasing an early Spring.

"Oh, it's below freezing yeah. And we've got about five feet of snow. So, it's a nice break. And when we go back home about half the snow will be melted. You're about two months ahead of us, for Spring," said a slightly envious Elaine Mason.

They'd take back some Biloxi sunshine if they could. They will take back a warm feeling that comes from helping others.

"We're willing to go and do something for somebody else. And we're all adventurous," says Rachkey.

The spring break building adventure will last for two weeks.