An 87-year-old steals the show

‘Hat­tie Dyck re­ally daz­zled Truro Ro­tary Club mem­bers’

Truro Daily News - - COLCHESTER COUNTY - Lyle Carter

The Truro Ro­tary Club held their weekly lun­cheon re­cently at Truro’s Best West­ern Glen­garry. One of ap­prox­i­mately 40 peo­ple on hand, I ap­pre­ci­ated an in­vi­ta­tion from club mem­bers Chris­tine Blair and Kevin Quin­lan.

Fol­low­ing the meal, chair­per­son and em­cee Blair in­tro­duced guest speaker Hat­tie Dyck. As those of us seated at ta­bles lis­tened in­tently, Blair pointed out that Dyck was born in Shube­nacadie and grew up in Lower Selma. Blair her­alded Dyck for be­ing the au­thor of 11 books and be­ing the first woman pres­i­dent of the Ki­wa­nis Club of Truro.

With all eyes glued on her, Dyck made her way to the mi­cro­phone. What would fol­low from the lips of this diminu­tive woman can only be de­scribed as out­stand­ing.

Dyck went on to give a talk that had ev­ery­one’s full at­ten­tion, was full of in­for­ma­tion and, best of all, it was bril­liantly funny at many points.

“It is said that when a se­nior dies the world loses a li­brary,” Dyck com­mented. “I fully be­lieve this.”

Dyck pointed out that most peo­ple will not be able to leave a mon­e­tary legacy when they leave this world.

“But all of us de­velop our own unique con­tri­bu­tion to the world,” she said. “My books will be a legacy of fun, as I have doc­u­mented the great char­ac­ters who lived dur­ing the good ol’ days. My books are based mainly in Colch­ester and East Hants where I grew up and still call home.”

Dyck went on to share sev­eral say­ings she learned from peo­ple over the years:

“… No mat­ter how flat you make a pan­cake, it still has two sides.”

“… You are ei­ther part of the prob­lem, part of the an­swer or part of the landscape.”

“… There’s so much good in the worst of us, and so much bad in the best of us, that it ill be­hooves any of us to crit­i­cize the rest of us.”

Be­fore con­clud­ing her in­ter­est­ing talk, Dyck paused to pull on an old cap. She then shared a colour­ful poem ti­tled, A Farmer Buys A Bra. It was so funny, club mem­bers Wayne Gillis and Ken Banks strug­gled to keep from fall­ing off their chairs.

The long and short, a farmer from the sticks was asked by his wife to run one easy er­rand while in a town nearby. She wanted a bra picked up at a spe­cialty store. The farmer was the centre of at­ten­tion as he en­tered, for the very first time, a women’s gar­ment store.

Fi­nally, in try­ing to ex­plain to the clerk the bra he wanted and the size from among 10 dif­fer­ent styles avail­able, the farmer re­moved his cap.

“Look, I did the mea­sur­ing last night, they are the same size as my cap,” he blurted out. “I just want to buy a bra – size seven and one-eighth.”

Yes, Dyck stole the show Mon­day. The 87-year-old spoke for just the right length of time and, as some­one said fol­low­ing her talk, “Hat­tie re­ally daz­zled Truro Ro­tary Club mem­bers.”

Asked about giv­ing pub­lic talks, Dyck said, “I used to get quite a num­ber of re­quests to speak, but these days, not so many.”

Dyck was so pro­fes­sional stand­ing be­fore the mi­cro­phone.

“Oh my golly, I was so look­ing for­ward to talk­ing to the Truro Ro­tary Club. Over the years, with my ca­reer in news­pa­per, I met many of their mem­bers.”

Dyck’s first book was Say­ings From Wise Peo­ple writ­ten in 2001. Her last, from 2015, is ti­tled Mem­o­ries From Nova Sco­tia.

Dyck be­gan as a writer with the Hal­i­fax Chron­i­cle Her­ald in 1959; she re­tired in 1992.

Quin­lan in­formed me Truro Ro­tary Club has 67 mem­bers; the pres­i­dent is Ryan Bea­z­ley.

“Ro­tar­i­ans get to do an aw­ful lot of good lo­cally and in­ter­na­tion­ally,” said Quin­lan. “Any­where we travel on the planet, we’re wel­come to visit other clubs. We are al­ways look­ing for new mem­bers, if any­one is in­ter­ested in giv­ing to the com­mu­nity, this is the best show in town.”

Orig­i­nally from Buchans, N. L., Quin­lan, a Bos­ton Bru­ins fan, spent 14 years as cam­pus prin­ci­pal of Nova Sco­tia Com­mu­nity Col­lege, Truro. He was pre­vi­ously a pro­fes­sor at the Univer­sity of Regina.

Lyle Carter’s col­umn ap­pears every sec­ond week in the Truro News. If you have a col­umn idea, con­tact him at 902- 673-2857.


Au­thor Hat­tie Dyck was guest speaker for Mon­day’s Truro Ro­tary Club lun­cheon. From left, Chris­tine Blair, Kevin Quin­lan, Bar­bara Goit and Hat­tie Dyck.


On her re­tire­ment from the Hal­i­fax Chron­i­cle Her­ald in 1992, a Bruce Mack­in­non car­toon was presented to Hat­tie Dyck.

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