Back between the years of 1975-1979 I lived in Northern Alberta, 100 miles north of Edmonton, just off Hwy 44, a road with no name, just a number that I don’t even know if I ever knew, maybe I just blocked it from my memory .
I proudly rode my shiny lime green bike up and down that Hwy so many times you couldn’t have kept count, when your parent tells you to go play on the Hwy, they meant it! and off I’d go, up the nameless dirt road up to the Hwy. Riding that bike was my Freedom from the hell I lived in. The wind through my hair and against my face, I was flying! When a big rig was coming towards me, I’d do the ” Honk your Horn” hand motion and the driver would blast me with his air horn, it would make me smile and laugh for a few minutes and forget my troubles. They were my friends! As a prize every so often I find a bottle or can, I’d save them up to cash them in every month or so for my spending money since an allowance wasn’t heard of in our house. One day I found a purse, now, you have to understand we were in the middle of know where, why would there be a purse laying in the ditch??
I took the purse home and showed it to my father, my father snatched it from me and started rummaging through all the stuff dumping it out on the kitchen table. There was a bit of make-up, a wallet with ID in it, no money though, and there was something that made my father say “oh, she wasn’t a very nice girl!” ,I have no idea why he said that but now I can surmise that it was probably Birth Control pills or Condoms. I asked what he was going to do with the purse and he said since there was an address found, he’d mail it back to the woman. So he wrapped it up and put some stamps on it and as far I knew took it to the post office and mailed it.
I hadn’t thought about this purse until last week, I don’t know why it popped into my head it just did, how many years had passed? almost 40 yrs., maybe it did because I’ve been seeing news articles about “The Hwy Of Tears” a Northern stretch of Hwy between between BC and Alberta that numerous women have disappeared on, when most had been hitch-hiking. One theory is it’s a Truck Driver who travels that corridor of Hwy. picking up these women and killing them, a horrid thought but we probably will never know.
So where did this purse come from? I can’t see someone just throwing their ID and personal stuff out a window of a moving vehicle on a whim, did a woman Hitch-Hiking from Edmonton get picked up by a Truck Driver? Did he kill her and throw her purse out the window in the middle of know where?? How many purses weren’t found? Did that truck driver tire of my Hwy. and get a new job that took him on numerous trips up and down the so called ” Hwy. Of Tears” or is it another killer? Or?? We’ll never know, and I’ll never know if that purse ever got back to her if she was alive or to her family to mourn? no matter what my father thought of the contents of her purse, she was still a human being.