Former Shoe Cove Bight resident Raymond Foster is going back home
Life in the Bight was good for Ray Foster and his family. They spent summers there fishing, with Ray and his brother, Malcolm, helping their father on the water. Wintertime they would all go to Rattling Brook where his father worked during those months.
© Rudy Norman
Ray Foster was born and raised in Shoe Cove Bight - a small community near current day Shoe Cove. Over the years people started leaving "The Bight" and eventually it went the way of many NL communities and ceases to exist today. However, that did stop the Shoe Cove Come Home Year from having a celebration this summer for the former residents of The Bight - including Foster and his family. He and others like him will find out what it's like to go home, when home isn't there anymore.
“There wasn’t big money back there, you know,” he said. “Father would walk two or three miles in the winter, and work in the woods for 10 hours a day and get a dollar. Summertime we didn’t make any money – we just traded our fish for a bit of food is all. But we made a living.”
More so than if they’d stayed home in the winter, where it would have been likely that they’d have to apply for “the dole,” as Foster calls it – assistance from the government of the day.
Foster says when he looks at life today and what it was back then, the contrast is startling.
“People don’t know today what it is to work hard to get what you need,” he said. “They got everything they want around them, and they’re not even thankful for that most of the time.”
Memories of the family’s tough times will likely flood back later this month, when Foster takes his wife and some of his children back home, and points to them where the houses used to be, and where the school used to be, and where everything once stood in the Bight.
See Thursday’s Nor’wester for the full story.