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Page 14 - Advert: Storm Warning! Be Prepared!

Published by Ronald Caplan on 1986/1/1 (946 reads)
 

imagine the biggest thrill of my life was when I got the first fox. I'd say I was on? ly, maybe, 9 or 10 years old. In 1914. I guess the first otter I got, I was only 10 years old--and he was alive. Well, I thought I killed him. It was muskrats I was looking for. But I put him on my back-- his head was up here, his tail was on the ground. I was only small. I took him home. I thought he was dead, but he was only stunned. Oh, my grandfather got awful cross. You know, he could have bit my neck or something. But I got $20 for him in 1914. That was a lot of money for a little fellow to get. So I trapped all my life, then. (What were your best years for trapping?) Four years ago, I guess. I got $300 for cats. Back a few more years I got 21 one fall, but I'only got $60 for the highest one. I'd say about 3 or 4 years ago was the best, money-wise. (And in terms of the animals themselves?) Oh, that would be in the '30s, there were more animals--no trap? pers then. I figured when I stopped trapping on a big scale, I'm sure you could take me out of the house here, blindfolded, take me any which way you want, spin me around in the woods: "Home is there" (pointing), and I have no doubt in my mind, that's where it was. You seem to get like an animal when you're in the woods all the time. Didn't bother me a bit to go in the woods. Since I got older, I always take a compass, but I never use it. You know, you lose faith, I guess, in yourself, or something. (When I look at your diaries, it's you worked, worked, worked, went to church, worked, worked worked. Now, I don't think working like that is something that comes automatically. I mean, I think that people learn to work. Maybe I'm wrong.) I always liked work. We had to walk a mile and a quarter to school. And the girl that came to school with me walked about a quar? ter of a mile further. I'll bet you if you got the register for while we were going to school, you'll never find where we missed a day--rain, shine, or storm. And in the spring, you know, there'd be snow? banks along the road--we had a sheephouse down below the house. We used to go in there and take our shoes off and leave them there. We always went to school in the STimmertime, without shoes. My grandfather was a good worker. He worked right up till the last. He was 84 years old when he died. My other grandfa? ther was 95 when he died, on my father's side. So there's hopes for me to get a few more years in. I'11 be 80 my next birthday. But if you get enough rest and good food to eat, I don't think hard work will ever kill you. I think it's good for you. Oh, I had a good life, I was never sick. I had an operation about 6, 7 years ago. That's the first time I was in a hospital. That's the first time I got a needle--I wasn't vaccinated when I went to school--I don't know why. And that's the first time I ever wore pyjamas. The first night I went in there, before the operation, at 9 o'clock, I was sound asleep. And I felt something working at my hand, and I woke up, and there was a nurse there. She had two pills--I said, "What's that for?" "Sleeping pills." I said, "Are you crazy? Waking me up to give me sleeping pills!" "Well, doctor's orders." "Well," I said, "you put them in the wastebasket." I said, "I'm not going to take them." Neither did I. ''Sm (15)
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