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Farmhouse to Our House: Sally Parsons’ CKUA Story


Do you (or someone you know) have a 200-300 word story about you and CKUA that you’d like to share with us? Please let us know by writing us. We’d love to feature it! What do such stories look like?

Well, here’s one by CKUA listener and donor, Sally Parsons!

Almost two years ago, my husband and I decided we would finally make our dream of living the country life on a small acreage in central Alberta a reality. Both 68 years-old and retired, we left behind our home we built and lived in for 26 years, and moved to our 10 acres of prairie farm land.

We set up our new country lifestyle in a heritage home built in 1925, with a beautiful gigantic barn built in 1913. We are the second owners of what is left of this amazing well-kept farm, first homesteaded in 1908. Having said all that, it took us a while to settle in, unpack and get to know the area.

We were very busy learning new ways of country living. Learning all about septic tanks, where to haul the garbage, ploughing out the snow-drifted yard, and where to source drinking water in quantity, as our well water was not drinkable.

We had no Internet or cable TV and didn’t rush to reconnect to these sources of distraction and entertainment. From the first days of our new farm life, we had the radio tuned to CKUA throughout the day. At first it was just background sound to make us feel like other humans were around us. Hardly paid attention to what was played or what was said or who was saying it. It was just a comfort to hear someone else.

Farm life is very solitary, especially when friends and family were two hours away and we only knew one neighbour. With the days growing shorter, we began to spend more time indoors. Still no TV or internet, so what to do after supper now that we were more settled and had more free time on our hands? Chatting for the next three or four hours ‘til bedtime wasn’t working as you can imagine lol. Too tired to think or do any additional chores, we started to develop a new routine that saved our sanity. Dinner, grab a book or magazine, and tune in to CKUA.

The diverse programming and interesting hosts, coupled with the right amount of news became the highlight of our evenings. Soon we had our favourite evening programs and made sure we never missed them. We also started to pay more attention to daytime programming and thoroughly enjoyed the stories and banter in between great musical selections. Everyday and evening was different. Although there were some program repeats, we found CKUA offered original programming, interesting opinions, ideas and a great variety of musical genres. We loved it!!!

The radio has never been turned off in the kitchen since the day we moved in, simply turned down in the evening. The radio in the living room was only turned off at bedtime. We looked forward to the end of the day especially, as we each cozied up in a favourite chair or sofa with a blankie, (old house was chilly even with the furnace going), and grabbed a book or magazine; or just closed our eyes and enjoyed whatever was coming over the radio waves for the next few hours. Life was full, simplified and satisfying.

When we listened to the first fundraising series of broadcasts, we both felt strongly that we needed to support CKUA. This radio station truly became a friend to us, giving us a reason to feel happier about our day, helping us unwind and drift into the heavenly feeling of sleepiness or giving us another reason to laugh or have a conversation about something. I think our minds and our brains were more active and healthier than they’d been in years lol.

This old house and this old farm is the perfect place for us, and  we are hoping to live here for the next eight to 10 years. Even though we finally got hooked up to the Internet and satellite TV, we still have the radio on 24/7 in the kitchen, and have it on mid-morning in the living room. If we have to both be away during the day, we leave it on for our four kitties, so they don’t feel lonely or abandoned, as they sleep away curled up in their favourite spots in the living room.

We say thank you CKUA for always being there. You are the best choice! We are happy to continue to listen to you and support you.

Thank you to everyone for doing a great job!

Sally and Dave Parsons
and Big Cat, Baby Boo, Tabby and Fluffy

Thanks again for sharing this story about you and CKUA, Sally and Dave and four different cats!

Please email us if you would like to share your own 200-300 word CKUA story with our community! And tell a friend too! We’d love to hear from listeners of all generations and backgrounds!