The hidden years in Canada 36, Ken's story

Door San-Daniel gepubliceerd op Friday 10 April 22:54

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Ken’s story

In the old American driving towards Toby's I realized that the old friendship had been permanently changed and was taking leave of something that had been good and beautiful and that had served to support me in difficult times. Beverly and Don would form a unit and we would butterfly around them a bit. I also understood that they were going to lead more and more a life of their own and that the removal was a fact. Beverly had been so strong and even now she had cut the knots and made choices that were not without effect. We had formed for a time a family connection which no one could penetrate and now it was done by a simple choice. Women make the real decisions in life, always. I turned to the chrome button on the old radio and with a click CKXl entered our world, The sound of silence came to fill the cabin, it could not have been more appropriate. We approached center street and I saw Toby's looming up and found the parking spot which I out of habit could almost call mine.

‘Gentlemen, ladies,’ said the bartender, and he nodded at us. ‘Four cokes please,’ said  Richard, as we walked by and saw the bartender just raise an eyebrow. We sat down in the conversation pit and I said, 'I'm very happy for you that you have found each other and I hope you will make each other very happy. ‘ They were still a little awkward about it and Richard took the word. ‘You know, he said, we had a special evening and night. Due to a colleague, we ended up in a love in / sit-in. It was very special ‘and when we sat at our cokes I felt whole again and deeply united with these wonderful people. Richard did the report without frills and then handed it over to me. 'Yes,' I said, it was very special and then Ken came in, ‘the love guru from San Fransisco. It meant nothing to them I noticed, but that was not strange because it had meant nothing to me a day ago.

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‘Well,’ I said, ‘it was quite impressive, there was loud cheering and a Mercury Cougar came driving up and Ken got out there. Everyone crowded around him and wanted to touch him. ‘The faces were blank. 'I suppose,' I continued,’ that you have had to experienced it to really realize what an impact this man made with his appearance. The evening passed and only early in the morning he came to sit in the circle with us and I'll tell you man he is an ordinary figure, nice and open and stuff. Big mother is not clear, said Rico, Ken, is the owner or main shareholder or founder, give it a name, of ‘the back to the beauty movement.' ' 'Oh,' said Beverly immediately, ‘my mother always buys tea in such outlets.’ ‘Look,’ I said contact. ‘It was not played but that man is tired of the rat race, he is driven mad by his own managers who send him every which way.’ ‘He's rich,’ Richard said, ‘I mean really rich and has a daily expanding empire. He appeared at the right time and he is burned up commercialized and six months ago, he had nothing! ‘ ‘He told me his story,’ I said, 'and it was a real story. I felt that there was not a speck of bullshit in it. I could have talked for hours with him were it not that Larry stepped out of the window and came crashing down in front of us. ‘ ‘Bev's mouth fell open,’ what kind of parties are those that you are going to, ‘she asked, surprised?

 ’It sounds stranger than it is,’ I said, 'but' ... 'just tell Ken’s story because I am also very curious about it myself, ‘Richard interrupted me,’ the rest will come later. ‘ 'Okay,' I said. ‘Ken sat next to me and he looked very stoned, we exchanged some generalities, and at one point he asked me what I did and we talked a little about building and then it was only natural that I asked what he was doing in life. He looked at me very empty and downcast and said nothing man, I only get paid, and he told me that he always had to go places and had to shake hands and sign contracts that he does not even know half of the time knew what he has signed or what he has in his bank account, but that he can simply buy what he wants and that nothing interests him anymore. ‘

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‘That sounds very real,’ said Bev, ‘that is what that sort of life does to you, if you are not careful then you are swallowed up. ‘He starts to understand that, I said.’ Her name was Joan, came muffled floating into Toby's jug from the speaker’s under the dimmed lights and after many a  coke and finally a can of beer, we all shared in Ken’s story and his agony.

‘I thought I had good control of my life,’ said Ken, and he took a good suck from his joint. ‘San Francisco is a great city and my parents gave me a lot of freedom. We had moved a few times and I do not mind moving. I do not mean just in town, but for my father's work abroad.‘ I nodded, because I had also experienced moving about a bit because of my father’s work. ‘You become different’, said Ken, your treasure everything more and you observe more, you understand just what is going on around you. My father was a biologist and worked for a mining company.‘ ‘I didn’t know they had biologists working there,’ I asked surprised, I would have rather expected geologists?’ ‘Yeah said Ken, they come in at a later stage. Plants concentrate minerals in them and if you have an eye for that, it will lead you to possible sites. Then geologists come only to study the strata. ‘ ‘You learn every day,’ I laughed.

‘I had never heard of it.’ ‘Look,’ said Ken 'there are always prospectors, people who want to find gold, but all metals are worth money, just like the money in carbon layers, now less because coal is on it’s return but if you really look, if you observe, then you get through the vegetation already a good idea of ​​what is possibly under the ground.‘ ‘Well,’ I said? ‘Oh,’ said Ken, ‘I've not always known that, but a brother of my mother was prospector and was always panning for gold. He could barely stay alive, poor Uncle Joe, God rest his soul, He died a year ago as poor as a church mouse. My father sent him occasionally money if he really was down and out. He lived like a kind of animal in the woods and built a cabin, a log cabin so to speak, and from there he went invariably gold panning.‘ ‘In San Francisco,’ I asked? ‘No, in Canada,’ said Ken, ‘Winters must have been hell for him.’ ‘I would imagine so,’ I muttered.

‘Occasionally he came a month to recuperate with us, Ken continued, and then left again. I had a good relationship with him, he was my family adventurer. In reality, he was very eccentric, he often talked to himself and gave himself answers. What do you mean, I asked? ‘ ‘Well, he would say: ' ' Joe are you hungry yet, are you ready for a bite' ' and then he said immediately after it; ' 'I could use a bite to eat,' ' Then he’d say, ‘well then I'm going to make you some.’ ‘People who are claimed by the loneliness solve it by holding conversations with themselves.’ ‘How did he keep himself alive,’ I asked? ‘He had a free miner's certificate. In Canada, you go past a townhall and you pay $ 40 and you get a piece of paper that you can walk everywhere and can dig and search for metals and minerals If you think you have encountered something promising, then you go to the nearest town and you claim the land and they give you a map where it runs and you mark it off with colored stakes with a code that matches your free miner's certificate.‘

‘Strange that you should pay for it, I said, it's called a free miner's certificate?’ ‘Yeah,’ Ken said, ‘that needs to be understood as the freedom to seek and extract whatever you see fit. It is in the interest of the state, hey,’ said Ken, you do all the work and if it emerges into an industry that is a bonus for the government. Employment, mineral processing, transportation, the government is not crazy. They grant anyone for $ 40 the right to slog his life in the sun and the soil, you will not get your country prospected any cheaper. ‘

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‘As long as you proof that you are still working the claim or account for money spent in a year, the claim is valid. That might be buying a new pickaxe, for example, in that year, or your own work. ‘ ‘That remains valid for always,’ I asked with disbelief? ‘No,’ said Ken, and he took another huge suck form his joint. 'Ninety years, say your life and then it falls back to the State, with all that which is on it, log cabin, materials, whatever. It has its advantages, you can hunt throughout the year to meet your needs and pan and if you think you have found gold dust, you go higher up the river until you no longer encounter it. Veins dust gold, which leave the vein under the influence of water, little by little.‘ ‘Man,’ Richard said, ‘is that the law here in Canada?’ ‘Yes, is it not strange that no one seems to know,’ I said. Listen to the band came from the speakers and hit the psychedelic path, the bartender leaned over and asked if we wanted to order something? ‘Just not now,’ I said, Ken's story was waiting to be finished.

‘Is it worth it’, I asked that free mining?’ Ken laughed, ‘far out man,’ he said, ‘you really don’t know it' huh?’ No, I've never been involved with that, ‘I said. ‘Man,’ Ken said, ‘you obviously cannot help that but my uncle and my father drove me almost crazy with minerals and fossils. Quite a bit is found in Canada, but then again it is a huge country. Coal is found almost anywhere in the world, but also aluminum, which is more unusual. It is a natural ore, and then needs to be edited. Copper can be found in large quantities and where you find copper, you find gold don’t forget the Klondike days with their gold rush. ‘

‘You've got nickel, iron ore and oil holding tar sands, here in Alberta, where we are now, and he pointed to the ground. In the next state, you have the diamond fields. ‘ ‘Really,’ I exclaimed, ‘I thought you only found those in South Africa.’ ‘You'll find them there as well,’ said Ken, ‘but Canada is great, man. You find all sorts here, like Uranium, across Saskatchewan is  Uranium country. My father has been working there searching plants. Employed by a mining industry. ‘ ‘So,’ I said, ‘Uranium bombs?’ ‘Yeah,’ Ken said simply. ‘One of the few sites in the world. Uranium at a site is immediately put under state control but the rest you can mine. ‘ ‘Oh,’ I said, ‘how many bombs are really needed?’ Ken said, ‘I will tell you something about Uranium. Uranium has been used for 2000 years in the Western world. It was molten in the glass during blowing to give it a special color. Naples in Italy was famous for it, I am speaking about the time of the Romans. At least until 79 AD. Want to know more, he asked? ‘ ‘Yeah sure,’ I said, ‘this is one of the most interesting conversations I've had in a long time.’ 'Okay here goes, ‘Ken laughed,’ tell me when I have to stop. ‘

 ‘A ton natural Uranium can supply 40 million kilowatts power. For that you would need 80.000 oil barrels of 100 liters or need 16 tons of coal. ‘ I nodded. ‘Uranium is 40 times more abundant than silver. and the price has increased from $ 3 per pound to $ 45 per pound. ‘ Yes,’ I nodded again. ‘Saskatoon alongside  our province wins 22 million pounds per year. ‘ I whistled between my teeth, that's impressive. ‘It has a value of $ 990 million per year,’ chuckled Ken. I was dazzled. ‘Strange how money always conveys the message better,’ Ken said, ‘I see that more often.’

‘A can of milk weighs about a kilo,’ continued Ken and Uranium has a high density, can of Uranium weighs just about the 20-fold. ‘ ‘Enough, man, I know now that it is not as rare as silver that the specific mass is high and the price rises. ' ‘You forget the conversion to energy,’ Ken laughed, he rolled a new joint.

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When I got home my father said, ‘there is mail for you from the government, it is on the table.’ ‘It was a call for service, a draft card for Vietnam. They selected men with a lottery, otherwise a whole village could be decimated. I picked up the envelope and opened it, almost already knowing what I would encounter. How many friends in San Francisco would now keep the same envelope in their hands?‘ My father came to stand next to me, ‘I respect whatever decision you take,’ he said. ‘What can I choose from,’ I asked? ‘Follow the call and the army and serve your country and you may be slain or you go to Canada to the claim of your deceased Uncle Joe and forget about the war.’ ‘Phew’, I said,’ I must think about it, if I do not appear on the call then I'm a deserter and I can never get back to America. If I do go, I probably live a short life‘ ‘Those are the choices,’ said my father.

San Daniel April 2015

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