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> Issue 23 > Page 12 - Frank Doucette on Micmac Ruggedness

Page 12 - Frank Doucette on Micmac Ruggedness

Published by Ronald Caplan on 1979/8/1 (2414 reads)
 

Frank Doucette on Micmac Ruggedness Plansue ne'wt aknutk ta'n Inukik tel mlkna*tisni'k aqq. mlkikna'tisni'k amskwes ke's metue'kek suliewey teli msnmik wjit mijipjewey aqq pikwelk koqoey. Teluet, eksitpu'k jel me' mu eitiklakinukw, ki's nipuktuk weskewita'jik ketantu'tij puksuk wjit wikual. Amastek ta wen e'plewiktn wutma'kittaqn na tujiw. Msit wen tmi'kn eweketoq elte'ket newtikiskik kweji wjua'toq tepaqn Ini kmu'jl kwlaman kisi Imaisikutew neskmna'q poqji piskianukw. Teluji kaqi'sk pemaisiku'tijik jel wastew teli ksu'teskasik nkutey nike' awti'l kis? kuk. E'tasiw na ji'nm ke's pem tepte'k wpuksukm wiaqi tepeketl na miti'l tujiw kipiteketal qatayik ta'n wen'ji'kuomji'j tlitutaqq ta'n tli atlasmitew aqq tl pite'matew wen. Klapis na kisitasikek na wen'ji'kuomji'jek asnma qatayik aqq asuaisikutite'wk wel'ta'sit pekisink na tujiw mita kisi atlasmitew aqq pite'matew. Kitu* ekntie'wimk ika'q, na miamuj askoqte'mn puksuk tepiaq wjit asukom te'sukuna'q tujiw ilamko'tu'n menaqa. Newtikiskik na na'tami teli pkija'lisk na lukwaqn. Na nike' teluemk asukom te'sukuna'q attikna'sin elukwen. Toqo mu na pasik eight hours.) elukwewn nkutey nike' kiskuk ji'nmuk. Elukwen na wej- a'tekemk eksitpu'k mi'soqo piluam'kwiaq. Toqo na mu teluemmik maw klu'lk mijipjewey mestmn na tujiw. Eksitpu'k na porridge malqutmn mita weli wjua'luek, tujiw na nuku' jiptuk wela'kwe'l app wlataltisk. Ekntie'wimk elleketa'mk na Sacred Heart Church aji alame'skewultimk tujiw apatleketa'mk. Teli nqase'k kisi miaw- wla'kwatalultimk aji akkie'ma'timkek na lusipayji'jk mi'soqo wqwayij piluam'kwiaq, tujiw elmita'mk aji wloqotalultimk. App ta'n tujiw kisi wloqotalultimk ki's app el'ta'mkek lusipayji'jk aji amalipqomul- timkek mi'soqo suel aqtatpa'q. Newte'jit na ji'nm el'toq nu'te'nmaqn aqq siaw nujo'tk we'kayiw kaqipqomultimk tujiw na nuku' elmleketa'mk. Ki's app eksitpu'k at snoqna'timkek kisna kate'ka'timkek tuitnu'jk. Kate'ka'timk app na mu tatqite'tm- i'tikap ji'nmuk. Wet semaqita'jik sa'qew- Frank once explained why it was that the Micmac people were so rugged and strong at one time when money for food and many oth? er things was difficult to obtain. He said that it wouldn't even be eight o'clock in the morning and they were already in the woods hustling firewood for their homes. In those days it was out of the question that a person's cutting tool would have been anything like sophisticated. Everyone used an axe and cut all day long in order to try to fill up a sled with hardwood, so that he could head home with the load be? fore it got dark. The men hauled so many loads out that the snow packed down as hard as some of today's roads. When each man had all but finished loading up his firewood, he would throw on a poplar to boot; then halfway home he would throw it off at this place where they were going to erect a cabin for resting up and having tea. Eventually that hut was built exactly halfway along the trail, and the men were glad to arrive there because they could rest and quench their thirst with a cup of tea. When Saturday arrived it was a must that you chopped up enough firewood to get you through the next six days, not to mention stacking it up neatly in a pile. This work would take you almost the whole day. In other words, in those days you did strenu? ous work six days of the week; and it wasn't for just eight hours a day that you worked, like the men of today do. Moreover, you didn't get the best of food then ei? ther. In the mornings you ate porridge be? cause it was very filling; evenings you might or might not get a good meal. Sundays you'd go by foot to Mass at Sacred Heart Church; afterwards you'd walk home again. As soon as the midday meal was com? pleted, you'd go play hockey at the reser? voir until it was almost dark; then you'd walk home to have supper. And then once a- gain after the evening meal, it was back to the reservoir for some leisure skating until almost midnight. One man in particu? lar would make the bonfire and then main? tain it until the skating was finished; when it was all over, you'd walk home a-
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