In August 1959, on a budget of $1,000.00, Gerry Dyke, Jim Groenewald, Moe Hague, Terry Huntington, and Albert McArdle set out from the Montreal suburb of Lachine on a 7,000-mile camping car trip across part of North America. (Okay, it was 7,192 miles, and worked out closer to 13.9 cents per mile.)
It would be very easy to compose a list of everything that is going wrong in the world and much more difficult to put together a list of things that are going right. But I’m going to take up the challenge. When I look at my world, and my world is that of middle class Canada, and compare what I experienced when I was a young man about fifty or sixty years ago with what I experience now, I can find many things that have improved.
For more than a dozen years, until he passed away from Alzheimer’s in 2006, I lived with my mate Hendrik Wolff. He lived with memories I thought should be recorded for history. He had seen men beaten and seen them die. When I initially attempted to get him to talk about those times, his gentle brown eyes would fill enough to spill over. But early in our days together, he found himself ready to talk about the past.
January is Alzheimer Awareness month and with that in mind I wrote the following essay. Many people know someone who is coping with this disease.
There are many types of dementia but they are all diseases of the brain which invariably result in: difficulties with everyday tasks like handling money and decision making; problems with communication, such as language or difficulty in finding the words they want and especially personality and behaviour changes.
Volume 25, Number 143, February/March 2022 2021 TRUE STORIES WINNER A Greenhorn Teacher by Oriole Vane Veldhuis
On a long ago, fine spring day, my farming parents went to Brandon. Dad said, “We’ll be home for chores. Don’t start the milking.”
With youthful enthusiasm I decided to surprise them. On opening the barn door, however, I saw our favourite milk cow lying in her stall. Sadie had given birth to a fine heifer calf that morning, but now she couldn’t get up. I ran back to the house and phoned our vet. A half hour later, Dr. Shaw opened his black bag. Out came a bottle and a large needle. Almost as soon as the medicine bottle was emptied, Sadie got to her feet and began licking up the chop in her manger. To me it was a miracle and affirmed my career choice, “I’m for sure going to be a vet when I grow up.”
Volume 25, Number 143, February/March 2022 2021 POETRY - RHYMING WINNER Curtains of the Past by Dianne J. Ferris
An eastern Canadian holiday, such beauty to behold
Each province I visited, had its draw along land and shore
The people are so friendly and their history is sublime
Their fishermen’s fresh seafood is a favourite of mine.