The Train by Jodie Callaghan
Ashley meets her great-uncle by the old train tracks near their community in Nova Scotia. When she sees his sadness, he shares with her the history of those tracks. Uncle tells her that during his childhood the train would bring their community supplies, but there came a day when the train took away with it something much more important. One day he and the other children from the reserve were taken aboard and transported to residential school, where their lives were changed forever. They weren't allowed to speak Mi'gmaq and were punished if they did. Uncle tells her he tried not to be noticed, like a little mouse, and how hard it was not to have the love and hugs and comfort of family. He also tells Ashley how happy she and her sister make him. They are what give him hope. Ashley promises to wait with her uncle as he sits by the tracks, waiting for what was taken from their people to come back to them.
Jodie Callaghan is from the Mi’gmaq First Nation in Gespe’gewa’gi (Quebec). She started writing stories when she was 8 years old and has always been drawn to story-telling. She has found writing to be the best way to connect to her history and her culture. Jodie currently resides in Northern New Brunswick with her husband, child, and pets. When she’s not teaching, she is very slowly chipping away at her Masters of Education degree from UNB and dreaming up stories she will one day write.