My father, John Bédard, retired from US Customs in 1990 after a twenty year career and a nine-year stint working for Canadian Immigration. He made Time Magazine. This is John’s advice to a new US Customs officer on how to survive the San Ysidro / Tijuana border port of entry.
No one ever accused my father of suffering fools. One of the victims (yes victims) of Trump’s actions is the actual personnel on the ground who have to implement the law. Law enforcement personnel want to come home after their shift. This short story, comes from a book written by John, Border Guards . This is the second in a series of stories I’ve published inspired by Border Guards.
San Ysidro, California
Some people are born to climb mountains – others to make the climbing tools. Me?
I am a US Customs Senior Inspector in the employ of the US Department of the Treasury – a GS-11. I assure you that, after a Supervisor reads this, I will retire a GS-11 (or even a GS-9).
I’ve disarmed more bad asses than I care to remember. I’ve been punched, chased with knives and scissors, had rocks and God knows what other projectiles thrown at me.
Extremely happy today to announce that Samuel French’s Theatre Bookshop in the West End of London has agreed to carry Hernani, by Victor Hugo, translated and adapted by Pierre Bedard. The play should hit the hopefully fly off the shelves next week, necessitating ceaseless reorders. Yeah. That’s what is going to happen. Gwyneth will be browsing through one day and decide that she should be Dona Sol. She’ll read it, talk to someone that matters, and all of a sudden you have Hernani in Love and it is playing in the west end. Yeah, that’s the ticket.
Don’t worry, this isn’t an ad for Amabilis de Sainte Croix. Woke up in this morning with the following letter in my mailbox, which I’ve copied and pasted below. The battle between Hachette and Amazon, affects all of us somehow, either as readers or consumers.
Amazon changed how you publish, distribute, and sell books. They have also influenced how authors write. I target Amazon first because it is forgiving. Bits can change. Amazon makes writing and publishing accessible to people like me, who have few illusions, just drive or whatever. I will never be Stephen King. I need to be Pierre Bedard without boxes of unsold books in my garage.
Amazon allows relatively easy access to a mass worldwide market for my books. Right now I’m a KDP Author, and that’s almost as good as pretending to be an Author, and a hell of a lot cheaper. When you look at a company’s balance sheet, the first thing to look for is inventory. Again, the unsold books in the garage.
Letter reprinted below
Dear KDP Author,
Just ahead of World War II, there was a radical invention that shook the foundations of book publishing. It was the paperback book. This was a time when movie tickets cost 10 or 20 . . . Click here for the full article →
In some social circles, admitting a love for wrestling or cage fighting is a form of intellectual suicide, the moral equivalent of lighting a Camel no-filter in an aircraft lavatory. Click here for the full article →
From Jean du Sud – Michel Bédard writing about the Bédards last days in Québec in bold. My notes in italics.
Holy Thursday that year was the day Severin Hébert buried his first wife and the day I started out for Montréal.
[Holy Thursday was on 27 March 1964. Severin went on to marry Amabilis’s sister, Anne-Marie Hébert Bédard, who, born an Hébert, had married a Bédard, was widowed, and then married an Hébert. There were many Héberts in and around Sainte Croix and Laurier Station.]
When I left Sainte Croix by bus, a violent storm, a blizzard, was just starting to form. The Deshaies bus stopped multiple times on the way, repeatedly stuck in the snow, which was piling up by the hour. The trip was long and punishing.
[The Deshaies Bus Line ran from Montréal to Québec City along the south shore of the Saint Lawrence through every village. Montréal to Sainte Croix seemed to take forever, though it was probably about four hours. It was a local milk run, which seemed to take forever under the best circumstances. In bad weather, it could very well take just shy of 24 hours, if not more.]
“Amabilis de Sainte Croix is the Québecois Anne of Green Gables!” Myles Ambrose, Stendhal Review
“I could not have told the story better had I lived it myself. I felt I was there for everything the arsenic poisoning, the births, the deaths, the drama of rural Quebec living. Well told.” Carl Chrastain, Santa Clara Valley Recorder
“Historically impeccable, best first person memoir I’ve read in the last six weeks. Impressive.” Candace Hsuang, Thunder Valley Reader
Here’s the introduction I wrote to her book:
Luck and fecundity
Between 1899 and 1904, five Hébert girls were born to Marie Zelphida Hébert, née Charest. Between 1924 and 1946, these five Hébert girls in turn gave birth to sixty (60) full term babies.
Amarilda, the eldest, had fifteen (15), Ida, the next, born in 1901, sixteen (16). Amabilis, the writer of these memoires had twelve (12), followed by Anne Marie . . . Click here for the full article →
Very proud to announce the publishing of my third book which just went live on amazon.com – Amabilis of Sainte Croix, a Québecois woman’s memoires spanning the experiences of four generations from the late 19th to the mid 20th century in rural Québec province. Amabilis’s point of view and perspective gives a fresh historical view to a turbulent time in Québec and Canada’s history. Included in the edition is her complete original memoires en français.