As I write this I’m flopped out on the sofa, flipping through channels on the sattelite dish, hoping there’s something good to watch on my wide screen television. The remote does the work for me, which is good cause I’m chronically lazy. As I channel surf and make notes on the computer, I’m reminded that things were a lot different around here not too long ago.
One of Gramp’s favourite ways to start a story was “You kids don’t
realize how easy you got it.” Then he’d launch into a tale that would seem like something out of a historical fiction. One tale he liked to tell was about the time he bought a horse in the Miramachi. For most of us, a trip out there is just a leisurely afternoon jaunt. His was a bit more extreme.
He left in the morning on foot, because in those days the only vehicle they had was a car. A horse was not going to take too well to the back seat. Gramp walked all day and by the evening he’d made it to Laketon and stayed at a boarding house. The next morning he got a drive into town, picked up his horse and spent the rest of the day leading it back to where he’d stayed the night before. The third day he set out bright and early and made it home by dark that night. Unreal.
Another yarn he loved to tell was how his grandfather’s cattle were often tormented by black bears. In the spring of the year, the bears would emerge from their dens, hungry and in search of easy prey. Unfortunatly, this was around the same time the cows would be giving birth. Different times, his grandfather would be awakened in the middle of the night by the cows bawling in terror. The men would take to the fields with kerosine lamps and pitch forks and drive the bears off. Lamps and pitchforks? Yikes!
Of course, by the time Gramp was farming no bears came near the cattle. Either because of decreased numbers, or they’d heard of him and his car and knew better than to come anywhere near the property. If animals could actually talk to each other, I’m sure the cattle would’ve told the bears, “If you bother us, getting shot will be the least of your worries. The bumper is much worse!”
In any case. I’m inclined to agree with him. We do have it pretty
easy. But it’s fun to remember the stories of long ago, and I’ll
share more of them in the future. For now, I’m going to chill out,
watch some more tv, and just loaf a bit. Now where did I put that