Page 48 - The Martells of Flint Island Light
ISSUE : Issue 45
Published by Ronald Caplan on 1987/6/1
in the boat and you went. You had to get through the clampers the best way you knew how. And you couldn't go in 15 minutes-- it's about 5 miles from here to the island. You just had to take your chances. And when an emergency came up, you got there the best way you knew how. And that was the best way. But anyway, he didn't survive. (And again, your mother wasn't there. She was deprived of that, too. And he's buried, I guess, at Homeville.) Yes. There's some humourous things too! But like I said, you have to really--I didn't know if you wanted this part of it, or-- I'll get these sad things out of my way, and then I can tell you some other things. I was thinking today (of Billy). He was on? ly 19 when this happened. Here again. This was the 22nd of January. I have those dates in my mind because, you know, there are things that happen that are sort of outstanding in our lives, and you sort of remember them. This was one of the times, again, when the weather was fairly decent. He came in for mail, mostly, or things that we might have run out of. And he was on his way back. And the boat--something happened to the en? gine. And he drifted. He tied himself, the boat, to the bell buoy, as long as he could--and then he drifted. It was one of the boats from Morien here. And Dad had to use the same signals again, you know--he had stopped the light to let them know there was definitely something wrong. It was one of the Murrants came out, anyway, and got the boat. And Billy's hands were frozen, his feet were frozen, he was in an awful mess. He used grease (to protect himself)--what they used for the engines--this heavy grease. He rubbed.himself with that. I guess it was the only thing that saved him, really. His hands and his feet were frozen. It's just a wonder that he didn't lose his fingers or his feet or anything. But he didn't. Overlooking the Margaree Valley at the Junction of Route 19 and the Cabot Trail A full-accommodation Lodge featuring spacious rooms, dining room and loiinge, swimming poolo Nearby are golf fairways, beaches, fresh and salt water fishing; camping, hiking. The best of Nova Scotian musicians en? tertain in our lounge every weekend. Check with us to see who's playing, and drop in for an enjoyable evening. (48) P. 0. Box 550, MARGAREE FORKS, Nova Scotia BOE 2A0 Phone (902) 248-2193, William F. Maclsaac, mgr. RELAX IN THE BEAUTIFUL MARGAREE VALLEf (You say that your father stopped the light. How did your father know that there was any problem?) Well, we could see. When the boats would go--we'd just sort of have an idea what time they'd be coming back. And we used to watch for them. And we had what we called spyglasses. And we used to take our (turn)--we used to watch, and we always--I don't know--I'm not saying that Dad did, but us young ones, we always had sort of a dread. Every time the boat left. It was the strangest. I suppose because of the things that had happened previously. But We always had a sort of a dread of things that were happening. Many's the time when Dad would go in, and he'd say, "I'll be home in a couple of hours," or something. And we'd watch, and we'd watch, and we'd watch. And it would probably be a couple of hours later, maybe sometimes just before dark, he'd arrive. And Mum would say, "Where in the name of Ned were you?" That was her favourite ex? pression. And he'd say, "Oh, so-and-so, -there was something wrong with their en? gine, and they wanted me to fix it be- fore"--and this would be his excuse, why he wouldn't be coming. And it's true. He spent half his time at the wharf, fixing somebody's boat. (When this happened to Billy--I'm trying to understand--he got somehow to the bell buoy.) He drifted close enough to--I guess--I'm just asstiming that he got the rope around it somehow. And it lasted for awhile. But here again, I suppose that the rope cut after awhile. Lots of ice around. He drifted out back of the island. It was out there that the men--whoever came from Tourist Brochures & Colour Printing A Specialty PRINTERS, 180 TOWNSEND STREET, SYDNEY, N. S. TELEPHONE (902) 564'245
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