Thursday, November 10, 2011

"Are there any f*cking Germans in here?"

I've published a few posts about Stewart without mentioning much about its quirky little neighbour, Hyder. Dubbed "the friendliest Ghost town in Alaska", Hyder is more a village than a Town with its population under 100. It has no paved roads, no school, and land phones and cable services are provided from the Canadian side of the border...Hyder is a throwback into another era, a time capsule of sorts to what America was 50-60 years ago…Oh there is no law enforcement presence in the Town either.

There is no land connection with the rest of Alaska and the main road through the town only provides access to the gold and silver mines for both Canadian and American companies. Precious metals’ mining is on the rise again as prices have gone up in recent times.

Hyder is not only lagging behind in modern niceties but it is also has more than its fair share of bizarre personalities. Only recently a California man was captured after years on the run for a murder committed decades ago. He had successfully acquired a new identity and lived and raised a family in Hyder and no one caught on to it.

This brings me to a story that I heard about an incident that happened in a local Alaskan bar. It was the summer time and a few friends decided to cross the border into Alaska to have a few drinks at the end of the day. The local brew was flowing, and all was well…or so they thought. In the middle of all the merriment , there was a huge bang at the entrance as a scruffy looking man burst in armed with a rifle.

He was dirty, reeked of alcohol and was almost toothless… “ARE THERE ANY FUCKING GERMANS IN HERE?” he yelled...The whole bar came to a halt…[To be Continued]