Island Stories: The Ice Cream Freezer
The Ice Cream Freezer
by Elmer MacKenzie
(RED Volume Four 2012)
When I returned to the Island with my family, in 1972, I carried back many fond memories of my childhood days in Fortune. One thing I recalled was how much I had enjoyed homemade ice cream, so I was determined I would buy an ice cream freezer so my kids could enjoy it as I had as a child.
One day when my wife and mother were going to an auction I said, "If you see an ice cream freezer be sure to buy it." I was wanting one of those old-fashioned freezers that you to turn by hand. I was sure the children would get a kick out of making ice cream that way, as I had years before.
Well there wasn't a freezer for sale at the auction. Mother, however, was talking to a lady she knew, who in turn knew that her brother had a freezer for sale. She told my mother and wife she was going down to her brother's house that night and would tell him to get it ready so we could pick it up the next day. It turned out that the lady's brother was unable to communicate verbally; circumstances that greatly complicated the negotiations that would take place over purchasing the freezer.
When we got to the their house the next day I got out of the car and went to the door and knocked. When it opened the brother was standing there with the freezer which was all fixed up. He had put new wire hoops on the wood bucket and it looked pretty good- just what we wanted.
(c 1940's Cora and Floyd MacKenzie with children, L-R. Elmer, Minnie & Derald)
I took my wallet out and took out some money to show him that I wanted to buy the ice cream freezer. There was a black-board on the wall just inside the door. He picked up a piece of chalk and wrote 50 on the board.
Well, I wanted the freezer, but I wasn't sure I wanted to pay fifty dollars for it, although it was a large freezer in good condition. I thought to myself I will offer him thirty, so I held out a twenty and a ten. He went back to the board and put a circle around the 50 on the board. I thought this guy is driving a hard bargain, Oh well, what the hell, I will give him thirty five dollars. I took out an extra five one dollar bills and made my offer. He reached out and took one dollar. He then reached into his pocket and gave me back fifty cents.
I could not believe that all he wanted was fifty cents. I tried my best to give him more but he wouldn't take another cent. In the years ahead we often enjoyed home-made ice cream, and I still have the freezer, which works well.