After 60 years Arnaldo de Castris isn't tired of his NDG milk route
Published Saturday, December 29, 2012 6:37PM EST
Last Updated Saturday, December 29, 2012 7:10PM EST
MONTREAL—It's a reminder of days gone by, a milkman delivering dairy products right to your doorstep. For the past 60 years, one man has been charming his customers while making the rounds in Notre-Dame-de-Grace.
Four days a week, Arnaldo de Castris wakes up at 5 a.m. to get ready for a job that begins before dawn. At 77-years-old, he's fine with the early start as long as he gets enough sleep the night before.
Energetic "Arnie" shows no signs of slowing down.
AF“I need nine hours. With nine hours, I feel like a young man!” said de Castris.
He’s a young man at heart, doing an old-fashioned job. De Castris learned the ropes from his uncle.
“I really enjoy it! The day goes so quick. Buongiorno here, buongiorno there. Hi here, hi there. It flies away,” said de Castris.
He starts his daily routine by loading up his old truck with crates of milk and other dairy products. Then, it's off to do deliveries on his route in NDG to his almost 300 loyal customers.
“I guess I'm nice to them, they're nice to me. So it's working out well, really,” said the milkman.
One couple in NDG appreciates the nostalgia that comes with the morning delivery.
“I remembered it from my youth, having a milkman when I grew up in the United States. So we just signed on and the rest is history,” said Roger Haughey, a customer who prizes the convenience of delivered milk, eggs and butter.
“It's always a really excited, energetic ‘Good morning.’ No matter what the weather, no matter what time of the year, he's always in a good mood and he always so genuinely wants you to have a great day. It's just like he's a part of the family and it's really great,” said another customer, Susan Gyetvay.
De Castris says his mother started asking him to retire 10 years ago.
“You've been running long enough, she says. But I say, ‘Do you want to see me dead? I'd rather work, I'd rather work!’” said de Castris.
So he does, often working up to 12 hours a day, always with a smile and always ready to do it all over again.
A photo dates from 1953, when Arnaldo de Castris was learning his milk route from his uncle.