Canada: QUEBEC: City in the Wilderness

When Benjamin Self and his stout, hearty wife Viola arrived in Val D'Or, Quebec, eleven years ago, they had $4 in cash and $267 worth of hardware. When the Selfs retired last week and headed for a U.S. vacation (the World Series, Ben's birthplace at Claremore, Okla., the Mardi Gras at New Orleans, then the warm sun of Florida and Cuba), they had $20,000 cash—the price they got for their hardware store—$100,000 in Val D'Or real estate, and an estimated 100,000 shares of 32¢-a-share stock in a promising but yet-to-be-developed gold mine.

No gold miners themselves, the Selfs had cashed...

Want the full story?

Subscribe Now

Subscribe
Subscribe

Get TIME the way you want it

  • One Week Digital Pass — $4.99
  • Monthly Pay-As-You-Go DIGITAL ACCESS$2.99
  • One Year ALL ACCESSJust $30!   Best Deal!
    Print Magazine + Digital Edition + Subscriber-only Content on TIME.com

Learn more about the benefits of being a TIME subscriber

If you are already a subscriber sign up — registration is free!