Page 13 - California to Cape Breton, 1917
ISSUE : Issue 51
Published by Ronald Caplan on 1989/2/1
That was the end of the car. Because my husband was going to work for a firm when he got back there, and they furnished him with a car, they gave him a Dodge car.... (Last year you came home. That was the first time in how many years since you made this trip?) Well, we were home in '17, and last year would be 1965. (What was the greatest change you saw?) The roads here--biggest change--and the trees --they grew up with woods here. (You mean the farmlands had grown in?) Yes! We've got pictures--you will see them--where it was--go out on the porch there and look down the river, from here. And we could see--our men with the logs used to come down, and we'd watch the logs coming down, and they'd get wedged up in the bridge there. Then the whole neighbourhood'd go down there to get them away from the bridge. You can't see anything now. (What about the way of life? Do you think that we're better off today?) Yes. Yes, yes. They're more.... (They're more con? tented?) Yes. And clothing is different, and food is different, and it's easier to get along today here than it was.... There was no such a thing as canned goods. (Voice: Tell Murdock now when your mother used to go to the woods out here.) That was (an) event in our lives, yeah. Mother would say, "Now, tomorrow we'll go up...and plant the potatoes." Boy, that was a big thing. That was a big thing. Oh, I'd get all ready, and we'd cook eggs and make sand? wiches • whatever we had at the time, didn't make any (difference)--any kind of a sand? wich- -molasses on it was good to us. A slice of bread--she'd make the bread. She'd put a little black molasses--that was just as good as caviar that you get now! And Mother would put the potatoes in a gun- nysack, I remember. And we'd carry them up to the top of the mountains here, where there had been trees burnt, and there were ashes there--black ashes. We'd get up early in the morning, and we'd all pile up there --myself, and Mother, and Mary Ann, and Murdock, and--no, Malcolm wasn't old enough, I don't think. And we'd pile up there, and we'd stay up there all day. And my mother would pick...and do this with the ashes. The black ashes- -just love- ly. And then she'd put (in) * • the new potatoes. And then she'd-- one over here, and one. There Frances, Frank, and their father Alex MacRae, with the lamb were always 4 mounds, that she'd call them, put them down there.... You'd think they were children. Another tree stump over here, and the same thing was done. We'd stay up there all day long, and that was a very, very--oh, my--that was a day-- day of days. And those potatoes would come up blue--you know, they were those blue potatoes. (What was the most humourous--what did you laugh about afterwards? The main trip--in 1917.) The funniest of all pictures that we took when we were here, was--my father went out and got a lamb, and he put it on the table. He killed it, I suppose--I don't know what. And Frances is standing and holding this one leg, and Frank hold? ing the other leg, while my father is tak? ing the hide or wool or whatever off. Well, we have laughed at that picture eve? ry time.... Frank was only 10 years old. And Frances on the other side. And Frances got that picture--where she got it, I don't know. But it really--we have laughed at the picture more--funnier--and Pop was there with.... And he was so busy, clean? ing that lamb, getting it ready to put in the oven for us to eat it. And we laughed at that picture so many times.... Frank, holding the leg of lamb.... Today I wouldn't stand for it.
Cape Breton's Magazine