90 YEARS AGO October 30, 1929 Triple murder and suicide. “It is now 11 o’clock, and I am going to join them.” Such was the note found by the authorities at the scene of the tragedy about four miles from Archerville Oct. 20 and said to have been written by L.A.Bergum, of that district, who, it is thought, killed his two daughters, his wife, a cat and a goat, and then committed suicide. It is thought that hard times with resultant financial worries had affected Bergum’s mind, as he had not been himself for some time.-Looking Back, Wadena News
Surely the Looking Back page will soon run out of sensational headlines!
Tracks of a large raccoon are in the snow behind the barn. Something will have to be done. They’re a lovely animal, but a destructive one.
Little Duckie seems to be feeling better, but has been trying to get Scott out of bed during the night. Why? We think he wants Scott to go sit on the couch so he can lie next to him. Scott ignored this last night as much as he was able, but when I got up at six I went straight to the porch door to let the dog out — and he wouldn’t go. If this keeps up, Duckie will have to spend his nights in the porch in his kennel rather than on his cushion under the dresser next to our bed. Or maybe we will have to start putting him in “pyjamas” — maybe he gets cold — sometimes I cover him up with a blanket before turning off the light, but he usually throws it off.
What I do know is that neither of us need to be awakened numerous times and this can’t continue. And no, we aren’t having him in our bed. The hair alone … nope, can’t do it.
My drive to work is 25 minutes. I’m in the office for six hours; three on each side of a lunch break when I walk over to my aunt’s and she spoils me with a hot meal and tea. This very much takes me back to my school days when I’d often saunter over to that same house, where my grandparents then lived, and sit down for a delicious hot lunch.
How exhausted I am when arriving home still surprises me. It’s been three-and-a-half months since the job began and I’ve made a point of not pushing myself to “get everything done” when I get home or on my four days off. Sometimes I don’t do dishes for the entire three-day workweek. I’m taking Vitamin B complex to give me as much resilience to the stress of learning as possible — not that it’s a difficult job, but the paper! Everything has to be recorded and filed and I swear there is a ghost that makes things disappear. I seem to be constantly searching, in frustration, for something that isn’t where it should be. And then trying to remember all the details … my memory isn’t what it used to be. If it ever was anything, that is.
Yesterday I arrived home shortly after 4:30 to a clean countertop and sinks (one full of washed Roma tomatoes), and Scott on his way to the barn to feed the cats (I’ve handed the chore over to him for a change; his turn). All I wanted to do was sit on the couch and think about nothing for a while, and this state of things I considered. Why so tired? I’d been sitting (except for jumping up a million times to get something or put something away) most of the day; nothing strenuous. I think what it is is that from the time I leave the house at 8:15 to scrape the car windshield and make my way down the gravel road to the highway, I’m “on.” If I’m driving, I’m “on” — paying attention to the road while listening to CBC radio’s morning programs. If I’m in the office, I’m “on” — busy doing things or talking to people either in person or on the phone. Even if I’m sitting at Aunt Shirley’s kitchen table or, as yesterday, treated to a restaurant lunch along with one of the village councillors by the acting mayor, I’m “on” — I’m with people and I’ll shortly have somewhere else to go and something that must be done.
So when I get home, all I want is to be a sack of potatoes for a while. But it’s time to make supper, and I shouldn’t sit on my ass. I should chop vegetables. On a day when there’s still light, I should go for a walk. Often there are dishes I should do. Shoulda, woulda, coulda, as the saying goes.
This is why I so carefully make no plans whatsoever — any that can be avoided, that is — for my four days off. I need that downtime to be without pressure of any sort.
For a person who used to go go go (I remember my former husband physically halting me in the kitchen one evening, saying “Just STOP for a minute”), recent years and months have wrought a huge change.
And now, I have 15 minutes to wash, dress, brush my teeth and suit up to leave the house. Good thing there is no time-consuming beauty regimen around here.