Halloween letter , circa 1938.........
No measles this year. No one dead this fall, either. About time. Got tired of going to funerals. Always had to have a potluck at them. Why do people always want to eat at those things?
This Halloween we're going to just plain enjoy ourselves. Our boys are coming as well. Both Mac and Harry have dates. Well, they're going to meet some friends there at least. Today they went to Lumsden. Back tomorrow. All the old cows, for miles and miles have been sold, every since the drought.They went to see. The Beach Orchestra will be playing at the party. You be sure that there will a be a ton of dancing.
I have four sacks of cabbage been given to me. Maybe I should make something for the halloween dance. Instead of pickles. Dad says that Mac and Harry are going as dead people. Says it's all the rage. Going to smear dirt all over their faces and wear old clothes. What a silly thing to do. I'll just have to mend them afterwards.
There go those darn coyotes again. They come closer every night. I wonder if they'll come right up to the house again. Last year they hung around. Wasn't enough that I turned out the turkeys for them. Now they want to move in. I wonder why they are so close tonight? They're louder than before.
Mrs. Jelly said she is coming to the party as a ghost. Well, I wouldn't be too surprised at that. She's so thin these days, everyone says she's given up the ghost, as it were. And she wears so much hairspray it's unnatural.
The other day, Dad butchered a calf. One dressed at over 300 pounds. It's going to be served at the party. I hope they appreciate it. Everyone's bringing something. Other day, young Toby Bing chased a skunk out of its den. He stuffed himself with it. Cooked of course. But you never know with those Bing boys. Apparently, he was sick for days. Serves him right. Way too many of those Bings . Rodent eaters, the lot of them.
Seems that Mrs. Bing had some sort of nose trouble this month. Cost her $2.50 per nostril to get them washed out. New treatment . She even went to Regina for the week. Must be nice to be able to afford that.Not sure it's worked yet. I saw her the other day. Still has the sniffles. I told her to snort mustard. That would cure it.And wouldn't go costing all her money. Something's thrashing at the side of the house.
Those damn coyotes. I can hear them . Sounds like they caught something. I wonder if it's those Bing boys.Pretending to be coyotes, of course. Like last year. Last halloween Dad found them hiding in the outhouse. Dad nearly shot them through. Thought they learned. Dad told me to ignore the coyotes.
Took out the mattresses today to be beaten and washed. That is a chore I do not look forwards to. Did I tell you that Dad went to Pilsons to get a barrel of soft water so we can do laundry tomorrow?Just me in the cabin. With the coyotes outside. They're making squealing sounds. Fighting amongst themselves, I bet.
We just came back from the fall fair in Regina. Bought a new suit for Dad. A blue pencil stripe. He can wear it to the new church. Maybe even to the halloween party. Not sure about that. I bought a nice dress . Has a zipper. All the rage now. Black with a white collar. We might go dressed up. That dress cost me $1.59. So it had better last. The hem is a little shorter than I would like it. Comes just between my knee and shin. I was told it was the "new length". Well, it had better be, for $1.59.
Damn those coyotes! The howling. It's miserable. Like they're right at the window. Better not be those Bing boys. I'm going to pretend they aren't here. I just yelled at them to go away. Black night. Wish Dad was back from Pilsons.
Today it blew a dust storm. Everything I touched was grubby and the farm hands were helping the pigs, picking up feed and stacking it.I have a pile of cabbages to chop, I guess. And pickles to count. And the coyotes are fighting again. But I don't think they're coyotes. I don't know what they are. But they must be. I'll keep the door locked. They keep hitting the house with their bodies. Banging . I have cabbage to chop. And pickles to count.
The farm hands have all gone home. Sure wish it were morning. Seems to be right beside me. Coyotes hunting turkeys again. That must be it. Yes. Last week they got two turkeys by the barn. I hope they leave me the rest of the turkeys for Christmas. I hope the wind stops wailing. I can hear them . Sure wish Dad were home.I can hear them. And it won't stop......
Photographs : Michelle McConachie Woods 2016 and may not be copied
Story: 2016 M.Woods written from family info circa 1930-1945