Such a nice day! Summer must be here for sure.
Tim, who works for Larry Rossi, was here today to fix our water problem we've had in the spring from time to time. We have a basin near the door into our basement and there's ledge involved, so I was afraid we'd have major excavation needed to correct the problem, but Tim came up with what we believe is an easy fix, reconfigured a bit of our lawn and made some other suggestions that made perfect sense. Now we'll have to wait until next spring to see if it all works. Our problem happens when the ground is frozen and water has no place to go. If we have plenty of snow so the ground doesn't freeze solidly, there's no problem, but this year with almost no snow at all, we had water coming over the threshold into our basement - a situation that seems to happen more and more often.
We bought a new lawn mower at Larrabee's this afternoon. Our old one gave out - actually, it broke during the fall or winter, or maybe something just let go and broke in the cold. We never found the missing pieces and both of us believe it was operating ok when we put it away last fall. We'd had it repaired a number of times and figured it might be time to get a new one if it was that brittle. I like a push mower - but not manual. I like to be able to raise the deck and lower it onto hummocks or small bushes when necessary, sort of like bushwhacking, and I also have to have something I can mow the stone walkway with. Fred does most of our lawn with the riding mower, but there are spots that need something smaller. It actually felt good to mow this afternoon. I slathered on some bug repellent and got quite a bit done in spite of heat and black flies.
We have some new folks on the pond. Bradley and Lydia Blackburn bought Bryce Montgomery's camp on Route 2, and Scott and Geraldine Pelok purchased the Richer's home on Sandy Beach Road. We will be contacting both parties to welcome them to the pond. Of course, we hope they will become Joe's Pond Association members, too.
Yesterday we had our annual meeting at the Cabot Historical Society. We had only a handful of people there, which is usual, even though members get a newsletter and the meeting was announced in the Cabot Chronicle. Old stuff doesn't have much allure for busy young folks, and the older people have a hard time finding the energy to do meetings, I guess. We have a great board and such a wonderful building full of interesting items, with new additions each year, it's a pity more people don't take an interest.
Speaking of "older people," Erma Perry was telling us at the meeting yesterday that Blanche Lamore, the treasurer of the Historical Society until a few years ago, will be 104 - I think Erma said today is her birthday. She is in a nursing home now, but lived by herself until a couple years ago - with some help in the last few years, but she was spry at 100, and complaining that she couldn't see well enough to drive anymore. She sure loved going to meetings, and outlasted groups such as the Woman's Club and Home Dem, but kept her hand in church affairs, Fall Foliage Festival and the Historical Society, not just for the meetings, but she did a fair share of work on suppers, too. She went berry picking or fishing whenever someone asked - she loved ice fishing. As a youngster, she had trap lines with her father, and continued on her own as an adult. She said none of her friends went with her much; they didn't like the long distances she traveled. Blanche said that was alright with her, they just slowed her down. This is a picture of Blanche and a few of her fox pelts. I don't know how much a pelt was worth in 1944, but I'm sure she sold them for a fairly good price. She told me she finally gave up the business because they weren't worth much anymore. I'm amazed there were that many foxes around; what she had in this picture must have been taken in one season. Anyway, all that walking, tending her trap line, probably contributed to her longevity.
Here is a quote from the website, www.trappingtoday.com:
The “Roaring Twenties” and the iconic ’coon-skin coat that was so
popular with the affluent college crowd drove fur prices to astronomical
levels. A respectable catch of 50 raw raccoon pelts sent to St. Louis,
at $12 a copy, would buy you a new Model “A” Ford.
With only a few minor changes, their price list for 1927 could be
republished today. Funsten was offering $15 for mink, $2.85 for
muskrats, $28 for otters and $12 to $14 for red foxes. A week’s
groceries for an affluent family was about $5. For a trapper’s family,
the food bill was significantly less.
The 20s would have been when Blanche and her father were in business. I don't think the family ever got rich doing trapping, but it certainly helped pay the bills.