In the late 1970s, fresh out of high school and keen to finance a university degree, I spent a year in mining camps in Northern Ontario and Northern Manitoba. I remember great heaping portions of potatoes and steak in the mess halls, shower water that ran yellow with sulphur, and armies of young men. In those days, mining was back-breaking work that required lots of employees doing lots of walking, shovelling, pushing, drilling, driving and fixing.
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