The hidden years in Canada 175,back to the start

Door San-Daniel gepubliceerd op Wednesday 09 September 22:22


Back to the starting point

We had been driving for hours and after a while we crossed the Mackenzie river, when that was done we drove on a real road. It was a long time since we had seen an asphalt road and it seemed as if we had ended up in a future film. Sometimes you appreciate just normal things more when you have suffered hardships. We did not need to be concerned about the sudden sinking into oblivion. The happy moose seemed like something from another reality. A world that vanished per mile behind us. A reminder that you knew existed and which was real, but that you would recognize again with clarity as you’d walk through those doors again. ‘Do you want to stop at Peace River,’ said Bill, ‘or change places, and ‘steam’ up to Calgary? ‘Whatever you want,’ I said, the adventure was unwinding at a breakneck pace and I did not mind arriving a day earlier or later to in Calgary.

‘We'll see,’ said Bill, ‘first we’ll have to get up there. ‘It was still about 1,500 miles to Calgary and it was unimaginarable  luxury to see signs here and there or church towers in the distance. In the late afternoon we drove into Peace River and my boss headed the combination to a large parking lot with a hotel behind it. We’ll take a room and will first have a nice shower, ‘said Bill,’ then we’ll go into the city, which was actually a village grown out of proportions and find a barber to cut and shave us. Then we’ll buy some clothes and go and eat something other than moose. Tomorrow we’ll head out early to Calgary. ‘. I nodded, it seemed an incredibly tempting plan. Jeans were after six weeks .. a faint cry from what they had once been.


The most special experience was at the barber. Like in an old Wild West movie, we were lathered and a man who passed his razor continuously along a leather belt to keep it sharp, clipped our skin baby soft. Then, our cheeks were ‘clapped’ and rubbed with a cologne. Moments later we stood outside, unrecognizable to anyone Up North. ‘It's been a good time,’ said Bill, ‘and you have acquitted yourself well, there is still a bit lacking in forming you, but with the years you will be a good ice trucker. After tomorrow, you have to decide what to do if you keep working with me or if you go your own way. ‘I nodded, I was very much in doubt, but I knew what I had to do, although I would sleep a night over it.

I rolled that night into a real bed and fell into a deep sleep without lakes, nor eternal waving men, just a deep black hole that swallowed me up and cleansed me.

San Daniel 2015

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