The hidden years, 145, the MacKenzie river

Door San-Daniel gepubliceerd op Tuesday 01 September 17:26


MacKenzie river

We had been driving for many hours and had not passed any traffic. 'How far are we  above High Prairie, ‘Bill wanted to know and I looked at the trip meter. ‘About 800 kilometers,’ I replied. We had been driving11 hours and in the evening sky the color explosion of the Northern lights could be seen.'Than it is another 400 kilometers to Yellowknife and about 100 kilometer to the passage, ‘muttered Bill. He kept quiet for awhile, ‘which I prefer to take, so at that time we’ll swap places. I nodded and kept my eye on what you might call a road. ‘What kind of passage, are we speaking about  Bill’ I asked,  just to keep the conversation going. ‘Through the mountains?’ ‘No,’ Bill, ‘replied, ‘through the river, you can only come to Yellowknife from this side if you cross the river and it is wise to take a low wading place. The river is at times nine meters deep so it's really no bullshit. 'I compared it in my head with the building where I had worked, that would be about three and a half floors high. That made me swallow. ‘Bloody hell,’ I said, ‘that must be a beast of a river. ',' A big mother.’ ‘you can say,’ Bill, ‘laughed, they do not come a lot bigger. What do you know about the MacKenzie River? ‘. ‘Nothing,’ I said honestly.


‘So,’ said Bill, 'hats off to the education system, partly funded by my tax dollars ‘ ‘The MacKenzie River,’ began Bill, is one of the longest rivers in the world, if you include the outflow area, where she passes into other rivers. ‘Right,’ I replied, ‘What do I need to imagine there, I asked?’ ‘A few things actually,’ Bill chuckled, ‘The river is about 1,700 kilometers long and  through the bracket 4 to 5 miles wide. The place that we choose to cross to the Yellowknife side is just two and a half miles wide. Let’s say approximately 4 kilometers and is not that deep there. ‘I was impressed. ‘ ‘Yellowknife,’ continued Bill, ‘is located on Great Slave lake and a side arm of the Mackenzie comes in from there.’ Was Slave lake created by the river, ‘I asked?’ ‘No,’ said Bill, ‘it is a leftover of a melting glacier of the last ice age.’ ‘How do you know this man,’ I asked? ‘Ha,’ Bill laughed, ‘many years ago I drove freight around Yellowknife and I worked for three months non-stop, which yielded enough money for me to be my own boss and start my business.

I learned more and more about my boss and his daily walk and trade. ‘I suppose it was named after slaves’ I said, ‘and if so who were the slaves.’ Bill laughed out loud now, ‘you suppose the wrong things,’ he laughed, ‘it is named after  the tribe of Slavey Indians, which we have driven  out from here and you need to talk about Great Slave lake because there is also a smaller slave lake and other lakes where Slave and  lake are in the name. It is sad actually, I thought, we had driven a tribe from here and stolen their country and named a lake after them, but not shown the courtesy to name it well, how hard would it have been to name the lakes Slavey lakes. Now even their name was used improperly as a final insult. ‘You should always be very careful.’ continued Bill, 'we are driving here into the delta area of ​​the Mackenzie River and there are many side arms, you must ensure that you take the right crossing to get to the Yellowknife side, otherwise, you’ll get hopelessly lost. ‘I nodded politely, but in my head I was still at Indians who had survived for thousands of years to be driven away for some minerals and precious metals, by a group of people who did not even bother to write their names properly and thereby effacing them in this area. There was an arrogance in it,  from the white folk side


‘We’ll have to change places once again,’ thought Bill, ‘as we cross the river then it is another 400 kilometers to Yellowknife. We do not go that way, reported Bill, first we have to pass Yellowknife, unload the tubes and then our contract begins.‘ ‘I slowed the colossus down switching through the gears and eventually stopped at the side of the road and waited for BiIl to come walking around. When he was standing next to the cabin I pressed down the latch to lock the door. ‘Phew,’ I said as I opened the window a little. ‘Boy, it's really cold outside’ Bill looked at me for a moment with wide eyes then he came to himself and he cried in an angry voice, ‘unlock the bloody door, or I’ll pull your head off. ‘ The latch clicked when I pulled it up and Bill came in with massive shoulders, I moved on. ‘Just kidding,’ I said. Bill gave a roaring laugh, ‘me too, you don’t think I’d do damage to my own truck.

San Daniel 2015

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