Cape Breton's Magazine

> Issue 62 > Page 56 - Joe Delaney and His Scarecrows

Page 56 - Joe Delaney and His Scarecrows

Published by Ronald Caplan on 1993/1/1 (190 reads)

tradition. Why? Because in Lent, in those days, no sweets, you know--no candy, no cake. Meat once a week. No dancing, no par? ties of any kind. (Lots of prayers.) Oh, yes, yes, prayer. The people used to go to church--oh, my God--a lot of people'd go every day of the week of the 40 days of Lent. And then on Friday afternoon at 3 o'clock, we had what you call the Way of the Cross. At that time of the year, when Lent took place--that was March and April. Forty days, you know. Well, we used to take out firewood for fuel, to heat ourselves. And then the idea was to saw it up and split it up and everything--that would be done during Lent. But on Friday afternoon at 2 o'clock, everybody would stop sawing wood or splitting wood--whatever they were do? ing- -and everybody'd go to church for the Way of the Cross at 3 o'clock in the af? ternoon. Unbelievable. And some were walking 3 1/2 miles to go to church for the Way of the Cross. Sacrifices! Discover Richmond County From Johnstown to Arichat, Lx)uisdale to Lx)ch Lomond, an extraordinary mixture of Acadian and Irish, Micmac and Scottish traditions welcomes the visitor. The setting is the quiet beauty of Richmond County. The culture and heritage are centuries old. We invite you to take Route 4, the road that leads through Richmond County. It is the road less travelled, and it will make all the difference in your Cape Breton Vacation. MUNICIPALITY OF THE COUNTY OF RICHMOND And that's--why did we look forward to (La Mi-Car??me)? You were kept so strict. You know--none of this, none of that. Well, my God, were we ever glad when the mid-Lent period came around. That was only for three days--Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday. Boy, were we glad to dress up and get out and go among people, you know, and have fun. Sometimes your father would hitch up the horse and take you for about a mile and a half, down the road. And then you would get off there. And then with this tradi? tion of the mid-Lent festivities, you dressed up something like a scarecrow. Well, you've got to disguise yourself, right? You've got to change your voice, you've got to change your walk. That's to fool the people so that they won't know who you are. So once your father'd take you down for about a mile and a half, two miles, then he'd drop off a bunch there. We weren't only the family. If he came, there's about 7 or 8, 9, 10 kids get in the sleigh, and down we'd go. And then we'd start from there back home, going from house to house, you know. And the idea for the people at home was to try and guess who was under that outfit, the mask. (In your childhood years, where did you get the clothes and the mask?) Well, a lot of people--clothing that had been abandoned, that was of no more use, but it could still be worn, like, you know. But it hadn't been cleaned since quite awhile. But another thing. Where we were very fortunate. The people that were (still) in the States. They had relatives down here, friends and ROUTE 4 The road less travelled! SPECIALIZING IN HOME-STYLE COOKING Parker's RESTAURANT Sunday to Thursday 7 a.m. to 11 p.m. Friday & Saturday 7 a.m. to 12 p.m. FULLY LICENSED • 535-2405 • FAMILY DINING St. Peter's OPEN ALL YEAR! Acadian Cuisine in a traditional setting Newly Renovated. Luxury accommodations in a 19th Century period setting. At Arichat on Isle Madame Call: (902) 226-2200 Discover Cape Breton Differently! KAYAK TOURS INSTRUCTION • RENTALS • KAYAKS • CANOES • BIKES • • OUTDOOR EQUIPMENT* LOG CABINS on the Bras d'Or Lake Ask for brochure: KAYAK CAPE BRETON R. R. 2, West Bay, N. 8. BOE 3K0 OR PHONE (902) 535-3060
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