Cape Breton's Magazine

> Issue 73 > Page 108 - From Visits with Capt. Michael Tobin Coastal & Gulf Ferry Captain, Ret'd

Page 108 - From Visits with Capt. Michael Tobin Coastal & Gulf Ferry Captain, Ret'd

Published by Ronald Caplan on 1998/6/1 (151 reads)

We're just about out of water. And we had to go to Port-aux-Basques. Now, that'd take another day or so, and there's no wa? ter to be got anywhere on the coast. So while I was talking to him, I looked ashore and I saw the water coming down over the cliff less than 100 yards away from me. I said, "Just a minute," and I went down and looked at the chart. You could drive the ship right in to the edge of the cliff. So I said to him, "Get your hose ready now and we'll...." We went in. And we went in till the water started falling on the bow of the ship. The engineers went down and they got a pork barrel from the cook, and bored a hole in the bottom and put the hose into it, put it under the water, and hooked up our hose down to the engine room. In three hours we filled all our tanks. Backed out again in the ice. Next morning we were ready to go. (That was fresh wa? ter.) Fresh water--right fresh running down over the cliff. I'll tell you one thing, too, I had dinner with the Prime Minister of Great Britain. Ramsay MacDonald and his daughter Ishbel. He gave some good advice. I was only a seaman then. My girl friend at the time was a relation of the fellow had a small hotel in southeast Placentia. He asked us to go up there for the day and have dinner with him. There was nobody else there, only the Prime Minister and his daughter. He was talking to me and he told me, "Go get your certificates," he said, "you're the same as Great Brit? ain," he said. "You're an island and you depend on transportation. You'll always have a good job." He said, "Make every effort you can to get your certificate." I was only a seaman then. And I followed his instruc? tions and I got through. But he gave me wonderful advice, I'll never forget it. (How far did you actually go in school?) I only had Grade Eight. I took lots of cours? es. Now and then I went to Navigation School. I had to learn trigonometry after I went back to Navigation School. Hard going. And mostly under a kerosene oil lamp be? cause when we tied up in port for the weekend, you'd put out the (generator) and turn on the lamps, light the lamps, kero? sene oil lamps. So that's what they had to study under. (Nora Tobin: How many were studying?) Capt. Tobin: It was only myself! END ORDER NOW! Mabou Wreaths Created by Hand in the Highlands ofMahoUy Cape Breton THE HIGHLANDER THE CAPE BRETONER The tips of this balsam fir wreath are freshly cut and made by the local people of Mabou and area. Locally gathered cones are tipped with frost and accented with a hand tied, tartan bow. Approx. 24" Diameter. $39.95 INCLUDES TAX & SHIPPING If you can't make it home, whatever the season • order the pride of the Highlands and bring a little of home to your home away. Pictured left, similar to THE HIGHLANDER, with the same high quality, lasting construction but with a lovely, specially woven Cape Breton Tartan ribbon. $49.95 INCLUDES TAX & SHIPPING Order before December 15th and we Guarantee Delivery anywhere in Canada or United States (except Hawaii & Alaska). To Order • Year after Year • Call Toll Free: 1-800-565-5140
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