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Saturday, October 22, 2011

Grandpa and his Wheelbarrow

September 1958

This is a glimpse into the way transplanted Hebridean life once was in Milan, Quebec. Gaelic was spoken there too.

My grandfather was returning home from working in the garden up the hill back of town. Aside from the wooden box filled with turnips, he was also carrying two passengers on the wheelbarrow. Ted and I were supposed to be the help that morning.

One time I remember accompanying my grandfather to pick up a 100 pound bag of grain. He had brought his wheelbarrow to carry the load and I was given a ride on the empty trip. We had to wait for someone from inside the Poulin’s general store (which was also the town’s post office) to come and unlock the door of the CPR water tower. I do not know the reason why the grain was stored there. My grandfather had to pick up the bag from inside and load it on to the wheelbarrow. The return trip was all uphill except for the railway crossing.

In following years in the mid 1960's I saw my grandfather move some very heavy loads on that wheelbarrow, loads so heavy that I couldn't even lift the handles.

The Oddblock Station Agent

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