I was working in Dawson City, Yukon leading the planning for a major gathering of private and institutional investors and mine owners from around the world. It was around the end of the conference, and it had been a long few days and late nights. My son, Jeff, was with me and sleeping in the hotel room.
It was around 1:30 AM when I came back and he woke up as I came back to the room.
‘Mom, I’m hungry.’ He said, like any growing boy who could eat constantly.
‘Well get up, there is a smokie stand down the street, let’s go and get one.’
Jeff got up and we headed down the boardwalk. The smokie stand is a popular stop at the end of a night of partying in Dawson City and given the long weekend, it was particularly busy that Friday night.
A small town and a popular tourism location, several bars and the casino were emptying out as we approached the stand. The line was long and Jeff, being twelve, was taking in the entertaining late-night scene.
The Midnight Sun, a favorite for the younger crowd, had started emptying into the street and an impromptu and loud street party was forming as we ordered our caribou smokies. Dressing our dogs, Jeff was closely watching the antics, all in good spirits so far.
We started walking back down the dirt street, darkness firmly having set in for this night in mid-August.
‘This is what the bar scene looks like when you are in your twenties,’ I said to Jeff as we stood and watched the animated crowd dancing, singing and socializing outside the Midnight Sun. ‘You are having so much fun you won’t want it to end, and the party just keeps going outside and all night.’
After watching for a moment, we moved down the street, approaching ‘The Pit,’ an infamous drinking hole as famous for its crooked floor and walls as it is for its hard drinking and crazy crowds. 6 or 7 people stood outside talking on the wooden boardwalk.
‘And this is what the bar scene looks like in your thirties. A few diehards that just don’t know when to end the night, they hang around looking for the next party. Everyone else has gone home earlier.’ I added as we walked by.
Jeff had remained quiet, taking it all in. Typical Jeff, lots going on in his head and never really sure what he was thinking, he simply asked, ‘What happens in your 40’s mom?’
‘Well, in your 40’s you are walking down the street at 2 in the morning with your twelve-year old son eating a smokie and having the best time of all.’
No other words were exchanged.