The hidden years in Canada 167, warmed up moose

Door San-Daniel gepubliceerd op Sunday 06 September 18:47

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Warmed up moose

The truck worked its way to the shore and Bill and I were tense and staring in front of us with pointed ears. The engine growled with a monotonous drone and just when I thought it was really over the top for us to leave the lake, it faltered, gasping fanatically to, after another breath through the filter and after a few coughing fits, start again, which we experienced without speaking and scared stiff, until the monotonous growl returned again. My boss was right, we had to drive close to the bank, which was the safest. We arrived at the exit that we had pointed at from the middle of the lake and brought the lorry to shore. The tires ate their way through the snowdrift and we drove straight now to the off side where a ramp had been pushed by one or other heavy piece of machinery. There was a huge widening of the road and further on it narrowed back to normal.

‘Park  her here,’ said my boss, ‘but keep her running’ He grabbed the handle of the door and ordered me to push the lever beneath the dashboard to unlock the hood. Moments later he pushed the hood up and I saw him through the crack which the receding hood doing something obscure with the air filter. Moments later, Bill stepped back inside. ‘In about half an hour,’ he laughed, ‘we’ll have Moose haché '' What do you mean,’ I asked in surprise, surely he had not lost his head. ‘Simple,’ said my boss, ‘I am cooking the food.’ Now I looked downright baffled  at him. ‘What are you looking at me for,’ he said, ‘is something wrong.’ I did not quite know, I had driven for hours, the ice had cracked under our wheels and here sat my boss babbling about haché, while the diesel injectors were probably clogged up.

‘How do you prefer the meat,’ said my boss, ‘half-cooked or well done?’ I thought I'll be honest, and said, ‘I have no idea what you're talking about.’ ‘Oh,’ laughed my pragmatic boss, ‘I clamped the survival kit to the filter. If the engine continues to run a half hour without faltering then we are fortunate enough that it has pumped the residue away, then we’ll turn this monster back on the ice and we’ll head again to Beardy. But before we go, we’ll have at least something warm in the stomach. Should the engine falter, then we are stranded here and that is so much better than going through the ice and ending upon the bottom of the lake, all frozen up, to be preserved, until kingdom come '. I nodded, I could picture that. ‘This is the road to a mine,’ continued Bill, ‘and at times trucks come by to supply the miners. If the engine stalls, it is virtually impossible to nibble on a deep frozen survival. Therefore, I just thought, I’d  put the moose on.’

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I chuckled and realized that I was indeed a greenhorn, a novice, Bill was an old hand, I could hardly imagine that anything could happen to us with him around. ‘We're going after the meal, when the half hour is up, right  to the mine,’ Bill said thoughtfully, ‘not immediately on the ice and toward the happy Moose from Beardy, why should we take the risk.’ ‘But you just said that you would take the monster back to the lake if the engine would run for half an hour.’ Bill looked disturbed, 'Yes,' I said that’, he muttered, ‘but sometimes it is better to once again consider what we are doing and I think we should run no risk. Once there, we’ll bleed the lines clean, I’ll need your help  and you can learn something new. ‘ With clean lines and injectors I’ll send this bitch and he knocked on the dashboard over whichever lake. ‘

Bill did not go over one night ice, I realized. ‘Now it's your turn to go out, my boss said, you get from under the hood, the foil packet with moose, pick it up.’ Moments later we were sitting with a paper plate with warm chunks of moose meat and to be honest, some fries weren’t quite done, but it was not bad.

San Daniel 2015

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