Thursday, 7 October 2010

Tale of the Pickled Pork














People often ask me why I love history -- stories like the one above are a large part of the reason. These great stories told about people's lives or the lives of their friends, family and neighbours. I was researching something on midwive of southern Alberta and I came across this story and it made me chuckle. Not sure how easy it is to read so I'll repeat it for you here:


"Money was scarce in 1922 so to get a little extra I started moonshining. The Mounties found out and tried to get me. Somehow I managed to keep one steap ahead of them. Once I almost got caught. The Mounties were coming to the farm and I had no time to hide the booze. As a last resort I fed it to my pigs. The end result was happy pickled pork and no ticket."


I love also the story about people such as the midwife whose husband was known to bake the best bread in the community. It seemed that every time she started work on a few loaves of bread she would be called out to deliver a baby and her husband ended up having to finish up the baking of most of the bread.


Or the story of the nurse who was going out with two doctors on a house call to a farm and had to tie her hat onto her head with bandages to keep it from blowing away in the chinook wind.


Or the young men so proud of their new car who were driving from Barons to Claresholm for the baseball game and waved jauntily to the older woman driving to Claresholm with an old horse and wagon. On the way to the game the tire of the car went flat and the horse and wagon passed them. They got the car going and passed the wagon again. But within only a few miles they had another flat and soon enough the horse and wagon caught up to them again. The lady in the wagon had the last laugh when the men finally had to accept a ride with her to Claresholm because the rough roads were just too much for the tires of their new car to handle.


I was raised hearing stories like this of my family and community history and I could listen to them for hours as a kid. I hope parents and grandparents are still taking the time to pass stories like this on. The kids may complain about it today but they'll thank you for it in the long run.

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