Pinchard’s Island

When my g-g-g-g-g-grandfather, William Davis, decided to settle in Newfoundland from Portsea in England, this is where he set up his new home, and it is where he died.  Pretty near every Davis I’ve ever met has descended from William and Pinchard’s Island.

It just so happens that my mother’s family is also from Pinchard’s Island, a tiny community that was resettled under the Joey Smallwood government, and so my 6 year old mom’s family floated their house over the sea to the nearest mainland community, Newtown in 1953.

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My parents own a little cabin there now, just a shelter in case of bad weather popping up unannounced, a place to make a cup of tea and make use of the loo.  Beautiful empty sandy beaches make this a lovely getaway just a few minutes’ boat ride from home.  The weather is still pretty cold here in Northeastern Newfoundland, but I lay back on the sand anyway, the sun keeping it warm, and when I’m not standing up in the wind, the cold disappears and the sound of the waves can lull me to a sleepy peace in no time.

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Dad, Duke, Jack the Labrador and I had a great walk around the island, and located the old Methodist cemetery holding my Davis ancestors.  The island is mostly marshy, with thick lichen that is kind of like walking on pillows (great thigh workout!) and there are still hummocks of snow from last week’s surprise storm.  Jack fell though one by accident, and needed dad’s help to get himself out of the snow covered bushes.

Other notes of interest: pan-fried smoked mackerel and tea for dinner, and we spotted a gorgeous snowy owl who hangs out around the cabin (the field mice make the uninhabited island an all-you-can-eat buffet for owls!).

Thanks dad, for suggesting such a beautiful, healthful retreat!

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