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Yesterday as my mother and I loaded up the van after a shopping trip at Zellers a 60-something-year-old lady ran across the parking lot to catch us. I thought we must have left something behind at the cash.
“You’re the ones with the bobble-head moose on the dash,” she said. Her breath came in short gasps, so anxious was she not to miss us before we drove away.
“I was going to leave a note on your windshield.”
Turns out she had been searching for a bobble-head moose to bring back to her grand-son in Nova Scotia who had specifically asked for one.
Now our bobble-head had only been on the dash a week. We picked him up for $3.99 at the Dollar Shop in Flowers Cove on the Northern Peninsula. As we have had a moose-filled spring and summer — all safe encounters, thank God — I thought the bobble-head a fitting trophy for our van.
We had stopped in driving rain to eat lunch at L and E Restaurant in Flower’s Cove. After a scrumptious meal of hot chowder and Caesar salad, we all ambled across the dirt lot to the Dollar Shop. Surprise Baby knew what he wanted instantaneously — a set of tacky plastic golf clubs, which he waved around at the Vikings we met later in the day. The two teenagers shared a headphone splitter so they could watch their endless movies in the back of the van with two earphones each instead of just one. For me it was a toss-up between a licence plate and the moose. Lucky for the lady in the Zeller’s lot, I settled on the moose. I doubt her grandchild had a Dead Man’s Cove Come Home Year licence plate on his souvenir list.
When I told the lady where the nearest dollar stores were, it dawned on me it would be a lot easier to just give her the moose rather than send her on a potential wild goose chase. After all, who knew if Townie dollar shops stock bobble-head moose. When I picked up old Moosey off the dash, a glazed look came across her eyes. She seemed in shock. I thought Surprise Baby, belted in his booster seat in the back, might protest to see Moosey leave with this lady. But even he knew a good thing when he saw it.
“She really wanted our moose, didn’t she, Susan?” He quit calling me Mommy out of the blue one day on the Northern Peninsula.
“Yes, she did,” I answered as the lady and her friend jigged their way to their vehicle, big smiles on their faces.
If I had handed her a million dollars cash, she wouldn’t have been any happier.
Sometimes it doesn’t take a heck of a lot to make someone’s day.
Susan can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org
Leigh with Multi Materials Stewardship Board writes: “Nice article in the Telegram this morning. We talked with SIFE when they were developing their program and offered some suggestions and cautions. Hopefully their program will work well for the professional recyclers, although we did warn them it had the potential to cause trouble for those who don’t follow the rules and decide to poach another’s turf, if it becomes more lucrative due to the higher number of containers being collected. We had suggested they work to pair these guys with businesses, who likely have more containers at one location (meaning fewer pick-ups and less work for more return), and which would likely increase the overall rate of recycling in the city, since many businesses are not participating at all (as opposed to homeowners, most of whom already recycle, and many of whom already donate their bottles to schools or other charitable groups.) Hopefully they can add that focus as they expand their efforts. As well, not sure if you saw in Saturday’s Telegram, but they are also working with the engineering faculty to design a better cart for these guys that would be easier to use than grocery carts... Hopefully these guys can make that happen, as I think it would be a big help.
Anyway, the main reason for me writing you was because you mentioned the guy who used to come around to your house was Roy… we used to have … Roy come around and collect bottles from us, as well as rake leaves, shovel, etc. If he’s the same guy (tall man, gruff voice, thick glasses), then I’m sorry to let you know he passed away about a year and a half ago, from cancer. It was very sad when we heard, and even worse that we didn’t hear until well after the funeral. I don’t think he had much family and we really would have liked to have said goodbye. I think about him every time I mow my lawn and shovel my steps.”
Susan’s Note: I think about Roy often as well. I hope his family and loved ones read this to know that people cared about him and miss his visits. May he rest in peace.
Gordon writes: “SIFE seems to be promoting and organizing welfare fraud. I’ll support this program when the can collectors start reporting their income.”
Pat writes: “Just read your article in today’s paper and thought I would update you on Roy, if you do not know by now… Unfortunately Roy passed away from cancer about 18 months ago (could be wrong on the time). We knew Roy Humber as he would stop in for a break during his rounds. He was sick for a while, then recovered but finally passed. He was at the Miller Center.
Unfortunately, we do not know the name of his “replacement” so we are not sure if it is Carter. I think I’ll ask him the next time I see him but he is elusive. He is quieter than Roy but there was a time when both of them would compete for our recycles. Hopefully this new program will help everyone.”