Tales and Yarns

Summer Vacation 1962

Author:  Garry Tizard

Summer Vacation



     This is the end of our first full year in Salmon Cove. We spent the summer of 1961 moving from Carmanville to Salmon Cove.

     Roger, myself, Elizabeth and Malcolm all got our school certificates on June 18th. We all passed, or graded as we quite often say, with Roger going into Grade IX, myself into Grade VIII, Elizabeth into Grade VI and Malcolm into Grade IV. We now had about three weeks left before leaving on vacation for Indian Cove and Hillgrade.

     Here in Salmon Cove there was always lots of entertainment for us young people _ there was the Salmon Cove Sands where we spent a lot of time swimming in the river or the ocean, and climbing around the cliffs on both sides of the sands; occasionally we would walk up to Blow Me down ( a community deserted a long time ago), there were no houses there but it was a great place to explore or just sit and watch the waves rolling in and crashing into the steep cliffs of the shore line.

    On July 9th, Father had to go to St. John’s to pick up our Grandmother Tizzard as she would be going home to Hillgrade with us. Roger, Elizabeth and I went along with Father on this trip and it turned out to be an all day affair. Father had things to do downtown and we all went to the museum where Father was making a deal to donate some of his and his father’s old coopering tools. We got home at 10 o’clock that night. The next day was spent getting things ready for the trip home to Hillgrade. Father and Grandmother were going to an Induction Service at Old Perlican at 8 o’clock that night and would not be back until after midnight. They had supper earlier than the rest of us, did most of their packing of suitcases, etc. and left around 5 o’clock.

     The next morning, July 11th, everybody was up around 5:00 a.m., had breakfast, finished putting the last of the suitcases and other luggage on board the car, and left at 7:00 a.m. After we left Salmon Cove we drove on into the Trans Canada. Once there we rested and did some trouting for a few minutes at the pond by the intersection. We fished right beside the road where a culvert ran under it. We usually caught one or two trout here but the ones we caught today we threw back as they would probably spoil before we got to Indian Cove. You must keep in mind now that the Trans Canada was under construction and there was very little, if any, pavement. From here our next stop would be Goobies for another bit of a rest and maybe a bag of chips or a bar for us kids. It was also a good time to go to the bathroom. Our next stop would probably be Glenwood, where Wilson and Elva Stuckless and their three daughters lived. The next point of interest was Lewisporte, and then on to Comfort Cove and Newstead. Here we would stop at Jim Eveleigh’s and make arrangements to put the car on the little ferry to Summerford. This trip usually took about one hour and ten or twenty minutes. If it was too windy we would have to wait at Eveleigh’s, sometimes overnight, for the wind to die down. However, on this particular day, everything went all right and we arrived in Indian Cove at 11:10 p.m. The Watkins’ were living in bottom at this time in Sidney Gosse’s old house which they had bought in 1961.

    The next day Father, Malcolm and Grandmother Tizzard went up to the house in Hillgrade to check things out. Everything was just as we left it last year.

   On Wedneday, 18th, a Mr. Rabbitt from the Newfoundland museum in St. John’s came to look at some of the old cooper’s tools that Father had picked out to see if the museum would want them. It was decided it would so Mr. Rabbitt stayed up in Hillgrade with Father and Grandmother that night to make a list of what he would be getting. The next day Father drove him to Herring Neck to connect with a schooner that was going to St.John’s.

    Grandfather Watkins and Father went to Grand Falls the following week and Grandfather bought a new car _ a 1962 Dodge. This trip still meant going to Comfort Cove on the little car ferry and returning the same way. It would be another two or three years before the road was finished all the way from Lewisporte to New World Island.

    On Wednesday, July 25th, there was a crowd of us young folks playing down in the beach by Grandfather’s store (not the shop) when Liz cut her foot on a piece of glass. That meant a trip to the hospital in Twillingate, by motorboat, and she had to have 8 stitches in it. Father took her back the following Wednesday and she had them taken out.

    The next day Grandfather had an accident with his new car. This happened up past Hillgrade just past where the four or five houses are now. I can’t remember how much damage was done to the car but Grandfather’s head broke his windshield and he had quite a cut and bruise there.

    On August 8th we all started packing our suitcases in readiness for heading back to Salmon Cove the next day. We were all up at 5:00 a.m. on Thursday and left around 6:00 a.m. Got to Summerford at 7:00 and had the car on the ferry at 7:40. I remember this particular boarding because Mother and Grandmother couldn’t bear to watch Father drive the car on that small boat. I also remember that just as Father gave the car a shot of gas to get her up on the back of the boat, one of the planks the men had down to drive the car on spun out from under the back tire and hit me fair on my toes and knocked me down. It did not feel good because all I had on was sneakers. Needless to say I stayed out of the way after that.

    We landed in Newstead around 9:00 a.m. and left right away for Salmon Cove. Today this trip would take about four or five hours, but on this day it took thirteen hours. This was because there was a lot of road work going on all along the way and just a little ways past Clarenville the gas tank dropped off the car (our new black 1962 Chevrolet Biscayne). This of course meant getting someone to come from a garage and fix it right there on the side of the road. It was also a coolish, damp and misty day. We were all very glad to get to our house that night. We got there at 10:00 p.m., tired and sleepy.

    Grandmother stayed with us until Saturday 11th, when she went to St. John’s by taxi. The reason she had to go was because she had to baby-sit the younger Hill children. Uncle Bon and Aunt Vina had to go to Wesleyville because Uncle Bon’s mother, Aunt Gert, was very sick. She died on August 21st and Father had to go and conduct the funeral service in Wesleyville. Jim Hill took care of getting Father to and from Wesleyville.

    In between the time Aunt Gert got sick and when she died we all went to St. John’s with Father for a whole day. While there, Father got some Presbytery books, a new car tire, house insurance, and bought a second-hand desk chair.

    Our cousin Edgar came out from St. John’s by taxi on Saturday, August 25th. He came out to go blueberry picking with me, Roger and Malcolm. Father took us in on the road where Gary Case’s father (who owned the store next to us) was looking after the crew of berry pickers. The procedure was that we had a small container (called an empter) to fill first, instead of lugging the gallon pails or buckets around everywhere, and when the bucket was full we’d take it to whoever was looking after that part of it. He, or she, would hold the bucket up high and dump the berries in a bigger container. The wind would blow some of the dirt and leaves out of the berries as they were falling into the bigger container. On the first day we four boys made $1.60 between us. We only picked berries on Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday and that was enough of that. One day after dropping us off on the barrens, Father and Mother went to Harbour Grace and bought a piano. They had bought an Emerson television on April 10th. Wow, we had a television and a piano. Things were looking up for the Tizzards.

   August was soon coming to an end but the Hills came out for one last visit on Friday, August 31st, and stayed until Sunday. While they were with us Father, Uncle Bon and all of us boys went berry picking and got six gallons. We, including Grandmother Tizzard, went berry picking again on Labour Day, and when we got home we sold them at George Case’s store next door. We sold 12 gallons all together.

   School started on September 4th, and so ended another vacation.


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