Orphan Survival Stories
My girl friend and I rented a car in Canada and were heading south toward the state of Florida to get married. This was a beautiful Canadian girl, whom I met at Burwash Lodge while traveling through the Yukon Territory.
As we were traveling through Montana, several unmarked police cars stopped us and began to search through our things. They told us they were searching for guns. I found that rather hard to believe as they were going through all my legal documents and reading my personal letters. I mean how many handguns can a person stuff inside a regular size letter envelope?
About the time they were going to allow us to continue on our trip, one of the officers noticed I was an American and that Anne was a Canadian from Brantford Ontario, Canada. We were immediately arrested and taken to the jailhouse in Great Falls, Montana. They questioned us for hours.
When released, I was advised I could leave and continue on my journey. I asked about Anne and was told she would be taken back to Canada in several hours and handed over to the authorities. I thought I would die right then and there, on that very spot. There was no way I was going to leave Anne behind, no matter what I had to do. I mean I would have done anything to get her back and I really mean ANYTHING, no matter how bad or illegal it might have been.
I followed the police car to the Canadian border at Sweetgrass, Montana where they allowed me to kiss Anne before they took her away. I told her that I loved her more than anything in the world and would do whatever it took to get us back together. I told her to get a room at the hotel on the Canadian side and call me at the pay phone at the border station as soon as she was settled. Over the next two days, I talked with Anne on the phone my every waking moment. I told her I was trying to arrange a marriage ceremony, which would take place at the border crossing.
The next day, I found out from the state authorities this could not be arranged and there was no one who could legally help me. I decided right then I was going to take matters into my own hands. I guess I could not get it through my head why a man and a woman who lived on the same earth and who loved one another could not be together. That some idiot from the past had drawn invisible lines on the face of the earth telling people they must stop right here, on this very spot and not take another step - that for some unknown reason, they were different and they were not allowed across a line drawn in the sand. That was so stupid and ridiculous to me. I did not care what the Americans said and I did not care what the Canadians said. I was going to get Anne at any cost.
I noticed in the evenings, there was only one guard on the Canadian side and that the American guard went home. As I stood there late one evening looking across at the Canadian side, a very nice looking girl came up and asked if I was looking for a date. I told her that I was, but it would be with the girl I was going to marry. I remembered seeing this same girl talking with the Canadian and American guards the day before.
When she realized she was wasting her time she said, "Good bye.” Then she walked away.
"Hey, wait a minute," I yelled at her.
She turned around and said, "Well, big boy that was a fast change of heart.”
"No, that is not what I want," I told her.
I asked her how well she knew the Canadian guard that was working the Coutts Alberta guard crossing. She told me that he was a nice person, but that he was always trying to get her to give him "special favors" free. I explained my situation and asked her what she would charge me to get him out of the small building, just long enough for me to get Anne across to the American side of the border. She told me that it would cost me $50. I told her that I would give her $25 now and the other $25 after I got Anne across.
I watched as she talked, laughed and joked with the Canadian guard for over an hour. She finally turned him around with his back toward me and I ran across the border heading toward the small hotel where Anne was staying. When I knocked on her motel room door, she opened it and her eyes got big and pretty. I could tell she was surprised to see me. She smiled, ran up and kissed me as hard as she could. It was so wonderful to feel her arms around me.
I told her to grab her things as fast as she could, and that we had to hurry and get across the border. When we got back to the border crossing, the guard was nowhere to be seen. Anne and I ran to my motel, gathered my things and packed them into the car. Then Anne went back up to the room to use the bathroom. As I turned around, I saw the girl standing there with a strange look on her face.
"Going to skip out on me?” she said.
"I would not do that."
I reached in my pocket, counted out $25 and handed it to her. She took the money and then reached into her purse and took out the other $25 I had given her. She placed all the bills together, rolled them up and handed them back to me.
"What is this?" I asked.
"Just wanted to make sure that you were not a liar," she said.
She turned around and walked away. After traveling about 20 feet she stopped, turned back around and said, "By any chance, do you have a brother?"
"I don't have anybody,” I said.
"They call me Betty Boo and I don't have anybody either," she said rather softly.
She lowered her eyes toward the ground, smiled faintly at me and turned back around. I saw her wipe her eyes on a dirty tissue as she slowly shuffled away into the evening.