Seniors Situation Room by Dawn Ford – Lost Cornwall Family Businesses & Rumble Seats 112617


Cornwall Ontario – Some friends were discussing the old days when they frequented The New York Cafe on Pitt Street and how much they still missed it.

Besides great food and a good variety of it, they also mentioned that when you went into the restaurant the staff knew you by name.

The Jade Restaurant was like that also when Art Chan would say, “Hi Su” or “Hi Stu”.

Everyone I talk to misses the Jade.

They kind of personified that friendliness on the sitcom” Cheers” with the song’s ‘catchphrase’: “Where everybody knows your name”, written and performed by Gary Portnoy.

We were lucky when we were growing up to have had great restaurants and stores with friendly staff who somehow kept track of regular customers to be able to call them by name.

Reg Kyte of Kyte’s Book Store knew a lot of us by name as did Kennedy’s Soda Fountain Shop.

Mr. Sleeman of Sleeman’s Sport Shop knew us because a lot of us went to school with his son Al.

Mr Nyman of Nyman’s Shoe Store was always welcoming to a lot of us who went to school with his daughters.

The staff of Fullerton’s knew some of us also by name because we were in there so often buying mellow-roll ice cream cones. I remember how wonderful were the chocolate mellow- rolls. They were wrapped in paper which had to be removed to pack the little round tube of ice cream into the cone. Scrumptious!! Ahhh, those were the days.

In a newsletter from CARP Promotions is an article about a major study of John Hopkins University and the National Institute on Aging which revealed that seniors with untreated hearing loss are significantly more likely to develop dementia over time than those with normal hearing. It states that this new information may lead to new ways of fighting dementia which affects millions worldwide with heavy societal burdens. Go to CARP Promotions ( Did you know? Hearing loss Linked to Dementia….for the full article.

When I was growing up we had a party line for our telephone. The number was 1388-J. Sometimes when we tried to use it, someone of the other party would be talking and we had to hang up. If they talked a long time, we couldn’t call out and that was annoying. Or maybe a boyfriend was trying to call in and couldn’t. Boy, I guess if it was an emergency we would have had to ask them to hang up. I remember a friend who didn’t have a party line and her number was 398. Amazing what I can remember of the past but not what I had for lunch last Thursday.

I found an old newspaper I had kept dated September 6, 1997 which had an article on the death of Mother Theresa.

The second part of the issue had a lengthy article on the death of Princess Diana which had occurred some days earlier.

Attached to the paper was this book of matches stub. It is an ad for 1000 stamps of the world for $2.95 from a company in the US.

The stamp with Prince Charles and Princess Diana must be one of the 1,000 offered in the ad.

My friend and former classmate, Sidney Horovitz who had been a French Horn player in the CCVS band, sent this great photo of the band marching down the street, kilts swirling as we walked and played.

In this photo it looks like we were marching to the Athletic Grounds at Fourth and Marlbourgh Streets; the Cornwall Armouries in the background. The CCVS band was probably going to play at a football game at the Athletic Grounds which we did often. Nice white spats and plaid socks, if I remember correctly.

Remember the ‘Rumble Seat’? I have a faint memory of being very young and having rides in the rumble seat of a relative’s car. Lots of fun…like being in a convertible, I guess, today. The car also had big running boards on each side of the car which we used to jump off and on as kids.

In this photo is my older sister Alberta (Coolie) sitting with an unknown man and an unknown girl perched above them. Year is unknown but taking a wild guess, early 1940’s probably.

In a Disabled World newsletter is an article about baby talk that the researchers call Motherese, Parentese, Caretaker speech, Infant-directed speech (IDS) and child-directed speech.(CDS. The article states the mothers using motherese or baby talk play an important role in language learning, engaging child emotions and structure in language. All this helps babies, apparently, develop syllables and sentences. Interesting. Who would have thought?? The article says that they haven’t investigated fathers or other caretakers yet. Go to the Princeton University website at for more information or to read this full article

To support your community and expose your organization to all of Dawn’s viewers across Canada email or dial 855 444 1133.

It made me wonder also about the way we talk to our pets. I do have to admit saying to Tiger,” You have a nice tummy whummy” when I am rubbing his stomach which he loves…for about 30 seconds. I call him pet names like, “Sweet Sweet Love”, “My Big Tiger Boy”,” Big Big Baby”, ” My Baby Cat” and stuff like that. lol. Babycat-ese I guess.

I think he thinks I am his Momma Cat because he does to me exactly what this kitten in the photo below is doing …starts sniffing my nose like he is going to give me an “Eskimo Kiss”, and then my head. Cute!

Here is a joke sent in by a reader:

And the Lord spoke to Noah and said: “In six months I am going to make it rain until the whole earth is covered with water and all the evil people are destroyed. But I want to save a few good people and two of every kind of living on the planet. I am ordering you to build an Ark.” And in a flash of lightning He delivered the specifications for an Ark.

And six months passed. The skies began to cloud up and rain began to fall. The Lord saw that Noah was sitting on his front yard, weeping. And there was no ark.

“Noah,” shouted the Lord, “where is my Ark?” A lightning bolt crashed into the ground next to Noah.

“Lord, please forgive me!” begged Noah. I did my best. But there were big problems. “First, I had to get a building permit and your plans did not meet the code. So I had to hire an engineer to redraw the plans. Then I got into a big fight over whether the Ark needed a fire sprinkler system. My neighbours objected to my building the Ark in my front yard, so I had to get a variance from the City Planning Commission. Then there was a ban on cutting. The carpenters formed a union and went on a strike. Then I started gathering up the animals and got sued by an animal rights group. The EPA notified me that I needed an environmental impact statement on your proposed flood. They didn’t accept the jurisdiction of a Supreme Being. I am still resolving a complaint from the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission over how many Croatians to hire. The IRS has seized all my assets claiming I am trying to avoid paying taxes by leaving the country. I can’t finish your Ark for another five years”, Noah wailed.

The sky began to clear. The sun started to shine. A rainbow arched across the sky. Noah looked up and smiled. “You mean you are not going to destroy the earth?” Noah asked, hopefully.

“No,” said the Lord sadly, “Government already has.”

Have a good week, Dawn


  1. I learned so much about the history of Cornwall through your eyes, a totally different perspective from what you read in the papers. Yours has human feelings and sound real. The picture of Tiger with the baby is so touching and I truly enjoyed the story about the Ark.

  2. Dawn you lived in much better days of Cornwall or anywhere for that matter. You are one of the very best people that God put on earth. I love the stories of Tiger the cat and all animals. Here in Ottawa people don’t know one another unless you work with someone or have a very close friend. You don’t know your next door neighbor.

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