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Old 08-09-2010, 09:29 AM   #1
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Join Date: Feb 2010
Location: Granite Falls, NC
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Diamonds in Canada

Back in 02 I think, Linda, my first wife and I made a trip across the border to Canada for a good ''look around''. We just ambled along with no place in particular to go. We were north of New York state somewhere not too far from the St Lawrence river. We stumbled on to a beautiful little camp ground. It had a lake for fishing and swimming and lots of camp sights. We chose a campsight close to the upper edge of the campground. There was a road and an area for tents above us. In the ''tent area'' there was three families we later learned they were all related. They were three brothers with their wives and kids and they were camped in a semi-circle with a big fire pit in the middle of the tents. When we parked one of them came down and told us that if the kids got on our nerves or were too loud just to let them know and they would ''see to it''. We said ''no problem'' and we loved kids even though we had none of our own.
That evening I broke out my wood carving tools and started making a cane. One young man named Shawn came down to watch. He was probably five years old and very interested in what I was doing. He asked lots of questions and I finally got him a bar of soap and a plastic knife and showed him the ''basics'' of carving. Linda called me to supper and I excused myself warning him not to touch the sharp knives on the table. He said ok and I went inside the coach to eat. About the end of my meal Shawns father knocked on our door and asked if Shawn was inside our coach. I said no. His dad seemed worried and said that they had called him to supper but they could not find him. I immediately went out side with his dad to look for my little friend. Everyone in the extended family was walking about calling his name and looking for him. His mother and older sister were notably upset because they could not find him. His mom said that when he got home she would ''warm his behind'' for not telling her where he was. She was very worried but she tried not to show it. I asked his dad if they had check down around the lake and he said they had did this and that he had warned Shawn and all the kids that they should never go to the lake without adult supervision and he was sure that Shawn would not disobey him on this. I said that I would check around and we would surly find him soon. I went down toward the lake and noticed a small path down the face of the dam. It was hard to see because of the overgrowth and it lead to the bottom of the dam thru thick undergrowth. I followed the path and made my way to a spillway and a creek at the bottom of the dam. There, in soggy shoes and wet shorts was Shawn with a bean can sifting sand in the creek....
''I found some diamonds and I am looking for gold now''...
he showed me some warn glass chips that were his ''diamonds''.... I told him that his mom and dad were looking for him and maybe we should climb out so he could go to supper. We climbed out and up to the road going up to the campground. As we cleared the undergrowth his mother spotted him from about 200 feet away. She gave a shout and ran toward us.
''You saved my son, you saved my son'' she shouted as she grabbed the small boy off his feet and showered him with kisses.. Tears flowed freely down her face ..''You are a hero sir, You saved my son''.........
I tried to explain to her that I was not a hero and that I had simply found her son playing in the creek below the dam. About this time Shawn's father seen what was happening and he rushed down to meet us. ''You saved my boy....... God bless you sir''........ He grabbed Shawn and bear hugged the kid showering him with kisses and love. ''Name your prize sir,,,,,,,,,,,,, you saved my son''. I tried to explain to him that I had simply ''found his son playing in the creek'' below the dam but he would have none of it. He sat the boy down and gave me a bear hug and his wife kissed me on both cheeks. By now the whole ''family'' seen what was going on and that Shawn was safe and they all gathered round and ''sang my praises''.. again I tried to explain that I had only found the child behind the dam and again no one would hear me.
''You must come to our camp and celebrate tonight'' ''You shall be GUEST OF HONOR'' I promised that I would come up later after they had calmed down some. I went to our coach and changed my wet shoes and ambled up to their campsite. They had built a roaring fire and were serving beer and clams. It was requested that I sit at the head of the table and I was ''served'' by Shawns mom and the beer and the clams were un-ending. It seemed that they all talked at once with seemingly no one listening. They all laughed and enjoyed themselves. Counting kids, wives and brothers there probably was close to 20 people gathered around talking. Finally Shawn's father stood up and proposed a toast to me as hero of the day for finding his son and bring him home safe. They all did a Hoo Rah.. and drank a toast to myself. I stood up and with everyone listening again I tried to again explain that I was not a hero and that I simply had found Shawn playing in the creek and that I was sure he would have came home by himself later that evening. They would not hear of it. They drown me out by tapping beer bottles together and on the table and finally I gave up and proceeded to get very full of clams and very drunk on Canadian beer......
About three hours later I returned home very full of clams and more than a little bit drunk on beer.
The next morning Shawn's father came down to our camp sight and again he thanked me for finding his son. He said that he and his brothers were avid hunters here in Canada and if I would come up during Moose season that they would take me moose hunting. It seems that they had a ''camping cabin'' out in the ''bush'' and they would spend a week hunting moose when the ''season opened''. They used four wheelers for transportation and he assured me that if I would come back up that the ''hunt'' would be free to me with everything provided for me.
We swapped e mail addresses and communicated for a long time after that. Like all Canadians they were great people, friendly and outgoing and very ''open'' to strangers it seems.
Over the years I have lost their e mail address but they are still very much alive in my memory and my thoughts. I still have some of the ''diamonds'' that Shawn found in the creek at the bottom of the dam.........
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