Lying under a young maple tree growing opposite Delson Community Center, I’ve been waiting for a bus Delson-Montreal to return home from Mediterranean cruise to Calgary via Montreal. Janko was wandering about nearby.
Looking at the picturesque foliage greeting me friendly and with breeze, nicely blowing to my face, I recollected the Pushkin’s beautiful verses:“An Oak Tree Greening by the Ocean”
My high poetic road took me to the Turtle River whereabouts are of this small town.
Now I understand clearer why Janko’s father stayed here. Especially after couple visits to his birth village Male Levare in Slovakia. Not so difficult to see the similarities between the two places.
Both are situated near the river, both have the main one street heading straight to the Church. It is a focal point of the life for all residents: adults and kids. Because the school in Delson was connected to St. Therese’s Church and even was operated by nuns.
Watch our photo expose: “Delson nowadays”
At this point Janko takes a floor and continues:
“I remember I was sitting at the steps rebelling of not to go to school. Why? I was little at that time but nuns were big and strict. I was scared. Two of them were really good teachers, 3 or 4 were not so good.
I am looking for a spot where supposed to be my daddy’s house. It’s gone. Nothing is there but big trees and vast spaces. Memories lead me to the railway tracks/ There was a railway station with the name “Turtle River”, in such a way the town was called before. Now nothing remained at that place but tracks for CN, C PR. At my Dad’s time there was one more railway company: Delaware & Hudson. It’s emerged with CPR.
There was the Butcher’s, the Viktor Holly’s friends’ houses: Kuyans’ and others. Where are they? They’re gone for ever.
“Dear Mother, Brother and Sisters,” addresses he to his extended family in Male Levare and describing his life in Canada:
“My boys go to school…”
It was me and my brother, then 10 and 8 years old.
Sad memories take me back to my home full of interesting impressions and childhood adventures.
I saw the Queen Elizabeth together with my Dad and Mom, and my brother who walked 2 km distance to St. Constante. The Queen arrived here on the special occasion of opening ceremony of the Seaway on St. Lawrence Tiver to take part. I remember how all my family was thrilled, and we, youngsters, could not fall asleep till late night, talking and talking about it excitingly.
Now everything is changed in my home land. The school is not here anymore. The town became modernized and vibrant.
I wish you, Delson, long happy years to live!”