Emerald Zone Corporation/Regional Economic Development Board/File With nobody to plow the roads or pilot the ferry or provide electricity, Michael Parsons and his wife, Georgina, will soon be alone. They will use candles when the sky is too dark to use solar panels and boil pots of hot water for baths. He will pass the time with books on stoic philosophy, and she will go snowshoeing, and they will walk their dog, Trinity, and simply ponder.“I guess in some respects, it will be kind of an eerie-type feeling,” says Michael, “but I’m not scared or anything. I know this town inside out, every nook and cranny.”After years of debate, the 54 permanent residents of Little Bay Islands, off the northern coast of Newfoundland, voted in February to resettle to the mainland. They signed agreements with the province, which will spend $8.7 million to help them relocate and expects to save $20 million over the next 20 years, according to a press release from the province in early September. The relocation date has been set for Dec. 31.We are unique — or weirdThe Parsons, however, were not eligible to vote on resettlement because they have not lived in the town long enough. Although Michael grew up there, he lived in Ontario for 22 years before moving back to the town two years ago, and Georgina is from a region closer to St. John’s. They expect some of their neighbours to return each summer, but for the sake of adventure and love of the abandoned island, the Parsons will stay the winter.“I have no concept of boredom,” says Michael, 52. “It’s always been a dream of mine to live in a remote area … I never thought for a moment that it would be in my hometown of Little Bay Islands.”Story continues belowThis advertisement has not loaded yet,but your article continues below.As a child, Michael explored the caves and coves of the island, a 30-minute ferry ride from Pilley’s Island and connection to mainland road network. His father was a fisherman, but Michael left after he graduated high school (in a class of seven students) to Memorial University of Newfoundland. He worked for a California-based software company until he retired at age 49, and he has two grown sons. Georgina worked as an accountant, and they lived northwest of Ottawa, where the pair was also often isolated.“I can honestly tell you, in 10 years, we’ve never even really had a fight,” says Georgina. “We are unique — or weird.” Haunting images of life inside Little Bay Islands, a depopulated Newfoundland town Little Bay Islanders voted on whether to relocate. 89.47 per cent said ‘yes.’ They needed 90 per cent ‘Our little community’s dying’: Isolation prompts Newfoundland town to ask province for ‘resettlement’ Other Newfoundlanders urbanized in the early 1900s, says Jeff Webb, a history professor at Memorial. Resettlement traditionally happened when citizens took the initiative themselves, Webb says, but the government has more recently stepped in to encourage resettlement and help cover the costs.“Newfoundland is becoming more urban; this has been happening for a century and a bit,” says Webb. “Much of people’s wealth is tied up in the land that they own, the house that they have … their gardens, their sheds and all that. If a community is resettled without any aid, you’re asking them to give up all their property … so this is a good way of the government helping to ease the transition.”The Parsons have some elderly neighbours they don’t expect to see again, and Michael’s father will move to a seniors home. His father is now packing up the shed that holds a collection of antiques.“It’s breaking my heart to see people packing their lifetime of belongings in the back of a pickup trip or a U-Haul,” says Michael. “I can look across the garden, and I can see my father … he’s wondering, what will become of this place? What will become of these things when I’m gone?” In Newfoundland, she has friends on the mainland who like to play cards and board games, but she rarely visits them now. “It’s a big treat if I leave and I can go to Tim Hortons,” she says.The couple has spent $50,000 to prepare for the winter. They recently moved to a newly built house with reliable insulation. They installed a solar power system and propane and wood stoves, as well as a “good old-fashioned clothesline,” Michael says. They will need to check the weather forecast before doing laundry to ensure they can hang it outside on the line.“It will certainly have a rawness to it,” he says of life off the power grid.For internet, the couple has a satellite connection, and Georgina hopes to continue occasional contract work as an accountant. They will also have a cell phone, and Michael has been testing antennas to secure the best reception. Amazon does not deliver to Little Bay Islands, he says, so he will order items to pick up at his brother’s house on the mainland. For food, the couple expects there will be weeks or a month when they cannot get supplies because their boat cannot get through the ice. Their stock includes dog food for their Nova Scotia duck tolling retriever.The population of Little Bay Islands began to decline in the 1950s, when residents left for lack of electricity, roads, telephones and adequate schools. The town saw a brief resurgence when a ferry service began, but it declined again in the 1980s as the crab and squid supplies became depleted.Related Undated photo of Little Bay Islands, Newfoundland and Labrador.