Friday, February 03, 2012

yreka gold heist

Siskiyou gold display circa 1947

Happy Ground Hog's Day!! My husband is broken-hearted this morning. Somebody got to it before he did. The nugget in the middle of the photo, the pure 28 oz shoehorn nugget from Scott Bar, should have been his. He had planned something a bit more elaborate: a Mission Impossible swat team kind of operation, hovering helicopter, ropes and guns and such to avoid alarms and discovery. But wait! No alarms went off at all.

On Ground Hog's Eve, two guys hid in the bathroom with a sledgehammer and did a routine shopping mall smash and grab, and walked out the front door in the morning. The alarm on the case didn't even go off. And they walked away with 3 million dollars in pure gold. There are some crimes that deserve to be done. That gold has been sitting there for years, unguarded, in little more than a country store candy counter display case. What were they thinking?

Initially, I hoped they'd get away with it -- and the criminal part of me that lives on despite years of therapy, persistent as moss, really hopes they do -- but they'd likely melt down the nuggets to buy meth and I really really really hate the idea of losing the collection to that monster. I understand the indignant County officials who thought the collection was safe, because absent the meth epidemic and backyard stills, Yreka is a relatively safe place.

Etna, Scott Valley, Humbug, Callahan (where my son's father died) -- these are places that hold memory for me: the lovely drive down the hill into the long stretch of meadow that is Scott Valley, the impossibly steep grade coming out. I used to take my son down there to spend time with his dad but not in the winter, I'd never get him out. I remember the times when his dad would get pulled over, toss the car keys before getting carted off to jail, leaving my eleven year old son to find the keys and drive the Jeep home over unpaved roads grown men would avoid and spend three days eating canned food waiting for me to pick him up because there was no phone.

Ah, Marky. He's survived alot. This beats the previous record held by me for exciting things that happened on Ground Hog's Day.

  This is a photograph of the feathers of gold left when the quartz is removed by an acid process. This gold is in Carson City, another of my husband's imaginary conquests.


asha said...

I hate to tell you this but the gold in Carson City, I assume you are referring to the collection at the Nugget Casino, that collection is no longer on display. I don't know what happened to it other that it did not suffer the fate of the gold that was in Yreka. My condolences to Kurt.

Anonymous said...

hope you are better. thought you weren't writing but I've read from back at veteran's day to now; some of your best; oh man is it good! do keep on!