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Issue #16

Canada by Dog-team

    On October 26, 1998, with two dimes and a nickel in her pocket, Linda Fair embarked on the journey of a her lifetime.  After being evicted from her Edmonton home by an abusive spouse at 4am, with not much more than the clothes on her back, she hitched up her team of sled dogs and headed off on an awe-inspiring Cross-Canada trek. Camping  on the side of the road, eating whatever "the universe provided"- including fresh roadkill and wild plants, Fair has managed to not only stay alive, but actually thrive.
    When we met up with her, she was travelling with a companion, Boyd, who drives a small motor home, decorated with plaques and advertisements; warnings to drive slow and show courtesy to the dog team, signs with the logo "Muttly Crew" and various other assorted  hand-lettered signs .  Fair met Boyd  near Ottawa, "he pulled up beside us on the road, waved us in, gave me coffee, and the rest is history" she says.  After a stop near Ottawa, during which time a dog was stolen and needed to be replaced, while Boyd tied up loose ends, Fair and Boyd, set off again, this time headed west.  "We are going to mile 0 of the Trans Canada, in Victoria", says Fair, "Then we are going to try to make it all the way across the country to St. John's, Newfoundland".   Fair's conveyance of choice is a 3 wheel adult-size bike, "The Mush-Mobile".  Three dogs pull and three dogs rest.  "It just goes to show you what one homeless woman and six homeless dogs can accomplish" she says.
    Financing the trip was tough at the beginning, picking bottles allowed Fair to meet her more crucial needs, but she found that the kindness of strangers should never be underestimated.  Farmers, truckers, tourists and assorted travellers would take her in for the night, or offer a dry barn, or feed her, or  come out to her camp site with a loaf of bread or even a few dollars.  As her story appeared in local papers, her fame grew and she often receives cash donations or donations of food or treats for the dogs.  "Any funds left over after the trip will be divided between the Canadian Diabetes Association and the Northern Alberta Mushers Association"  she says.
    During a short stopover at Boothroyd`s Kahmoose Gas Bar, she  asked The Fraser Canyon Express to relay a message from her to the people of Canada; "This a beautiful country" she says, "I am here to inspire Canadian Pride, and to tell people that they can have dreams and that those dreams can come true, if you just get out and do them, there is no time better than now!.  Canadians are warm-hearted, kind and welcoming. I have met some of the finest, most giving people during this trip.  We should all be proud to be Canadians.  If you have a dream, if you have love, faith and trust you can  accomplish anything".  We had not heard by presstime whether she will be travelling the canyon on her journey east, or if she will be taking a different route.                                
    Keep in touch with Linda Fair and her "boys" and follow her adventures.   
Her website is www.members.shaw.ca/muttlycrew or e-mail her at muttlycrew@hotmail.com

                               Letter
Dear Editor,
    I was wondering if you could find out why we don't receive the radio station STAR FM.  I live outside the town of Boston Bar, about 8 km.  The only radio station I receive is CBC.  I like to listen to STAR FM because of the music and to find out what events are happening in the Fraser Valley. Thank You,
                                                                                                                  A Reader

Dear Reader,
    We spoke to the general manager of STAR FM, Ken Geiger, about this problem.  He seemed quite surprised to hear that we weren't receiving the signal.  The signal is sent out from Chilliwack to central Boston Bar, where there is a transfer station.  Some time ago, a resident called to ask the same question and technicians came to service the station.  Burnt out connectors and other minor problems were fixed and the station manager assumed that all was well.  Power surges and black outs can often cause problems like this, he says. STAR FM does have a few people in other locations who will contact them when problems occur, but for our area, he says, they really rely on the locals to let them know when the signal is lost.  As far as when we will be listening to 106.1, the answer is not definite. Geiger promises that workers will be sent out ASAP, and we should be able to pick up the signal again very soon..
                                                                                                                     -editor

 Antique Generator Heads to Museum

    Between the baseball diamond and the CN tracks, in Boston Bar, stood a couple of small unassuming outbuildings, with large underground diesel tanks side by side. Until recently, the building was home to three monstrous generators, which until a little over a year and a half ago, supplied Boston Bar and North Bend with a source of emergency back-up power.  The first wave of workers, electricians, arrived in town approximately a month ago to begin disconnecting the electrical components of the station.  BC Hydro made the inevitable decision to dismantle the generator station for several reasons; the generators were expensive to run and maintain because the machinery was obsolete, the men who maintained the station lived out of town and the station became redundant since the completion of the Scuzzy power generator.  
    The next phase of the job went on for some time as the buildings were gutted, and the contents disposed of.  Much of the machinery was given away to locals, first come, first serve.  The fence went to a mill in the Nahatlatch as did two of the huge fuel tanks.  Two of the generators were dismantled and disposed of, but one, a working 1940 Vivian was sent to a BC Hydro museum in Stave Falls, BC.
    As of late last week, the buildings had been levelled and a jack hammer was noisily breaking the concrete rubble into chunks small enough to fit into the Crusher.  Once the concrete is crushed into gravel it will be spread over the site removing any visual trace of the generator station.  The next phase will be a visit from Environment Canada to determine whether the ground is contaminated with diesel fuel- one of the generators may have been leaking for some time, evidenced by considerable spillage on the floor of one of the buildings.  If the ground is found contaminated , the gravel will be removed and disposed of properly.  At this time BC Hydro has no plans for the land.

 North Bend Recollections (1926-1938)

No. 5                                 North Bend Folk                      W.(Bill) Young

    Recently, my wife and I visited North Bend and I found, to my surprise, that all of the streets had been named with signs posted.  When I lived there in the 1930's, I  had never heard of street names like North Bend Crescent, Lee Road, First Avenue nor second Avenue.  Even the one road that did have a name had been changed from Government Road to Chaumox Road.  (Mind you, I like the name of Chaumox Road better)
    As we drove around the town, more family surnames and given names of North Benders of the mid 1930's came to mind.  It was then that I thought I should include these in one of my "North Bend Recollections" articles.  One of the reasons is that I'll be referring to some of these family names in future articles.  (Don't worry, I'll be careful so that neither The Fraser Canyon Express, Crystal Kimber, nor I will be sued for libel).
    At the outset, I have relied on my personal memory only and, of course, there will be omissions of family surnames and the names of children (in brackets).  blame my poor memory.  similarly, I'm afraid that there will be some spelling errors also  and should I be able to get this updated some day, it may be worth the effort to publish an updated  version.

Chaumox Road: Konyk;  Richmond; Ades; Walden (Adeline, Phyllis); Washtock ( Ray, Gilbert, Cyril, Quentin); Young (Nancy, Joan, Bill); English; Muggeridge; smith (Marian); McLeod (Doug, Rod, Gerry); Peterson (Gwen)
North Bend Crescent: Mahoney (Bill, Terry); Fagan; McEwen (Dennis); Pafford (Walter, Muriel, Eloise); Tymo (Doreen, Vivian); Ryder ( Fred, May, Dorothy); Douglas (Arlene); Ross ( Dayton, Vida-May);  James (Patsy, Janice); Selder.
High Line Road ( & beyond):  MacPherson (Norman, Muriel); anderson (Dorothea); Ketcham (Bill); MacDougall; Grant (Buster, Arthur); Young (Adele, "Tinker"); Gowan; Allen.
Station Road (& vicinity):  Purdy (Beryll); Green; Coveney; Pomfret; Stevenson ( Jackie); Devitt;  Bartlett; Benz ( Wilbur, Charmaine); Ms. Harris; Ms. Vye; Miss Phillips.
Old Post Office Road ( & vicinity): Yearley( Frank, Gordon); Campbell (Bill, Beta).
Area Between Railway and River: Richardson; Hamilton (Drummond, Pat); Watson; Fisher; Bosley ( Alex, Raymond); Corry ( Bill); Sahadak ( Irene, Eddie); McKibben ( Harley); Firkens.
         In addition, there are a few additional family surnames that I recall but do not remember in which area of North Bend  they lived: (Gruchy; Prouting; Dryer; Ward).
          
         Finally, I'd be most pleased if any of the 1930-era North Benders would like to contact me with any additions, corrections or even just to say "Hello".  E-mail: billem@islandnet.com. Perhaps it may `trigger' more memories.

Saturday Gets off to a Shaky Start As Earthquake Rumbles Through Boston Bar
    Saturday Aug. 17th began with a roar for residents of the Fraser Canyon.  An earthquake of 4.5 on the Ricter Scale shook homes and  rattled  windows at 9:06 am.  With the Provincial Government Seismology Centre on weekend hours, not much more info was  available by presstime.  The tremor was class-ified as moderate-with real damage occurring  at 6.0 . The epicentre of the quake was originally reported  to be around the Kamloops area, but others have said  Kelowna.  Tremors were felt as far as Hope.  Some canyon residents snoozed through the event but others reported feeling strong shaking, "I thought someone was trying to break into the house" says one woman. Another resident reported feeling the shaking while she was outside, "It definitely scared me" she said.
  Despite Boston Bar being situated on a fault line, no reports of rock slides or highway blockages had been received by police.  Is this an indication of more shaking to come?  We will keep you posted.

RCMP Report

    Police are shaking their heads after a baffling case of  an American man committing two dine and dashes last week.  The man ate and then ran out on the bill at The Charles Hotel and shortly after, did the same at The Canyon Alpine Restaurant.  Police caught up with him and detained him for ques- tioning, but were frustrated by his answers.  He responded with a series of bizarre explanations when asked about his identity, at one time saying that he was kidnapped from England and that he was the son of the King.  Upon taking his prints and running them through the Canadian databases, it was discovered that he was not Canadian and was, in fact, American, in this country illegally.  The FBI were notified and subsequently confirmed the man's citizenship.  Constable Holmes of Boston Bar Detachment commented that he was fairly sure, early on in the questioning that the man was from south of the border because he used "American" terms and phrases.  What is most baffling, he says, is that it doesn't appear that the man has any outstanding warrants in the US and that there didn't seem to be any "good reason" for him to be hitchhiking through here with no belongings, no money and a desire to elude police.  Police charged the man in connection with the two dine and dashes, as well as obstruction for his obvious, but somewhat amusing, attempt to avoid being identified.  He is now in custody waiting to hear what will happen to him.   It is likely, due to the nature of the crimes, that charges will be stayed here in Canada, and that immigration will simply send him back to the US.
    Aug 16, 2pm- a minor motor vehicle accident occurred at Hells Gate involving a motorcycle and a motorhome from California.  The motorhome apparently pulled out of a fisheries lot south of Hells Gate Airtram and attempted to cross three lanes of traffic  to enter the east parking lot cutting off the motorcycle. The bike was totalled, but the driver escaped with minor injuries.  Charges have been laid against the driver of the motorhome for driving without reasonable consideration.