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The Last Resort - Chapter 06|
Arthur took me to this rooming house and showed me this little tiny room which was to be our home until he could find somewhere better. What a small room! Only enough room for a double bed, a single bed and a small cupboard. We had to be very quiet as everyone was sleeping. It seemed as if we had only been in bed ten minutes when I heard all kinds of sounds from the kitchen and as our room was right off the kitchen. I could hear someone saying that they hoped we weren’t going to stay in bed all day. Did I ever feel dreadful and woke Arthur and asked him what the time was. When he said ten-thirty, I nearly had a fit. I made him get up and I quickly got Richard up. We went out to the kitchen to meet our landlady, Mrs. Laverne. We would eat our meals with her as this was a boarding house. I apologized for being late. Mrs. Laverne had six other people to feed so was anxious to get breakfast out of the way. I also wanted to send a cablegram to my parents as I knew they would be worried about me.
After I had helped Mrs. Laverne with the dishes and cleaned up, Arthur took me out and as Mrs. Dingman’s store was the first store we came to, we went in and who do you think I saw? Arthur’s niece, Lillian! She was helping out at the store.
I was introduced to Mr. and Mrs. Dingman and before long we were talking as though we’d known each other all our lives. How friendly people were. I knew I was going to like it here very much. We went to the station where I sent a cablegram to my parents and a sister. I felt much better knowing that my parents knew I had arrived safely.
Arthur introduced me to Bob and Mary Scott. Bob was the postmaster in town. I also met Miss Irving who ran a boarding house and her sister Mrs. Starratt who later on gave beautiful get-togethers for the war brides in her lovely home. I met many wonderful people who made me feel so much at home in this place called Hudson.
Hudson is situated on the shores of Lost lake and is a pretty place. In the afternoons I would take Richard and we would sit by the lake for hours at a time. Richard was fascinated with all the water and things in the water.
After a week, Arthur had to go back to his job which he had left so he could meet me and get me settled in. I know he didn’t want to leave and I didn’t want him to go but I knew that I would be all right now that I had met so many people. I could always visit Lillian and Eddie and Eddie’s father. After Arthur left, I settled down to my new life in Canada. Mrs. Laverne had two other boarders besides Arthur and I. Tim O’Donovan was waiting for his wife to arrive from England and Mac McLaughlin had married an English girl who was living with his parents in Toronto. He was working as a taxi cab driver in Hudson. As I have said before, Mrs. Laverne was feeding six other men so she was busy all the time. What a wonderful cook she was. I think that all I lived for was meal times!
Arthur did not stay at his job too long as he did not like leaving me and I suppose it did not seem right really although I told him that I would be all right. Arthur was guiding tourists at Archie MacDonald’s place on Cliff Lake. He left that job and got a job on the railway unloading freight.
Mrs. Dingman often asked me to go and have tea with her. It was on one such visit that she said she had a building that she would sell Arthur. I had told her that I would like a little place of my own as we were a little crowded in that room at Mrs. Laverne’s. When Mrs. Dingman offered this little place, I couldn’t wait to get back to tell Arthur. He was just as pleased as I was and we decided to go and look at it after supper.
As soon as supper dishes were done and put away, we went to have a look at this building. I must say that I was disappointed when I saw it as it was so small. it had started out as a blacksmith shop but the man had died before he could finish it. it wasn’t what I expected but beggars can’t be choosers, so Arthur bought it for $50.00.
There were lots of things that had to be done before we could move in. Arthur’s friends said they would help put in partitions so the next time I went to look at the building it looked altogether different. Instead of one large room, there were two small bedrooms and a small kitchen. Steps had been built instead of having a plank to walk on and a new door had been put in so it didn’t look too bad. I am sure it would look better with some furniture in it. Three windows were also put in, so it was beginning to look like a little doll’s house. I always felt like I was walking into a box when I went into the house as it was so small.
I hated to leave Mrs. Laverne as I’m sure she appreciated my help with the dishes and waitressing. She was very good to me and I know I was going to miss her and her good cooking. We did need a place of our own though and this little place was ours and that was all that mattered.
Arthur still had his gratuity money from the army so we hired a taxi and went to Sioux Lookout. We bought all the furniture we needed to furnish our little home. I was so pleased. I now had a place to invite my friends. Now that I lived in a different part of town, I didn’t see Mrs. Laverne as often nor did I go and sit by the lake as often as I used to. There was already four English war brides in Hudson when I arrived. I quickly got to know them and one in particular got to be such a good friend to me. She helped me in so many ways. Two more brides were coming in September.
Hudson was such a busy place. in fact, it was known as the busiest little town in Canada. The gold rush was on in Red Lake and everything had to go from Hudson by scows or planes to Red Lake. There was no road to Red lake so Hudson was the starting point. There was a post office, an air service, several stores, three cafes, two sawmills, two churches, a blacksmith shop, a warehouse depot, boarding houses, a fishery and of course a station.
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