Dear Editor: Sandbar Belongs to Everyone

One of my first memories is walking hand in hand with a giant down the South Bar sandbar road to the ocean.

He wasn’t really a giant, he was my great grandfather, a veteran of the First and Second World Wars and a retired miner who didn’t say much and didn’t really seem to like children that much either. On this summer day, as we crested the hill above a shimmering sea, he lifted me onto his shoulders with his rough hands and the whole world unfolded in front of me. To this day, every time I reach the top of that hill on the sandbar road I remember that moment and the world is new again.

Barrier tape on Sandbar road, South Bar.

Photo by Rod Gale.

Like most people from South Bar, I see the sandbar and the road connecting to it as part of what defines us as a community. It’s summer walks, lost loves and time spent with elders who have passed on. The sandbar is the keeper of memories and this simple road leading to the sea is the main vein connecting it to our collective hearts and minds.

Two weeks ago, I tried to go for my spring walk on “our” sandbar and to my dismay there was barrier tape across the sandbar road. I didn’t know what to do. I stood in front of the tape staring at it and then I decided what I was going to do…

I’m not going to tell you what I did but I will tell you this: no one should or will stop a community, a people, from enjoying the natural recreational resources that Mother Nature has given to us “all” to enjoy and that we have enjoyed for countless generations.

If you agree with what I have written, I urge you to contact District 12 municipal councilor Lorne Green and Cape Breton Centre-Whitney Pier MLA Kendra Coombes and tell them so.

Thank you for taking the time to read this piece.

Rod Gale
South Bar