Mr. Noodle

Mr. Noodle
Mr. Noodle

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Salmon Arm to Edberg

On Friday July 8th, Sam & I departed from the Travelodge in Salmon Arm just before 8am local time. I think local time was PST, and I'm not really sure when I crossed into a different time zone. Usually they have signs but I must have missed it somehow.

Sam was not so good to drive with on the second day of our trip. She MEOWed the whole time and it was really getting irritating. She wouldn't eat and wouldn't drink, but I was happy to see her use her litter box.

It became clear to me that I would have to keep the air conditioning on and that, when Mum & I make the big trip to North Carolina, we will not be able to make any touristy stops with Sam in the truck. It's just as well, really. Yesterday it was eight weeks since I've seen Dan, and I'm really antsy to see him. Once we have a go date, Mum & I can get there in five hard days if we push it.

I stopped in Golden for bathroom, snacks, and some cute kitty food. By 'cute kitty food' I mean canned cat food. Every day at 5:15PM, she gets 1/5 of a can of soft cat food, and I was out. We have to keep these routines going so kitty can feel some small sense of normalcy wherever we are.

I have been through the Rocky Mountains a lot growing up, so it was all very familiar to me. As I was nearing the eastern side, it really started to rain a lot and it was even more clear that I really need those stupid windshield wipers (which I have since purchased but not yet installed). I wasn't going through Banff or Jasper, but took the parkway near Lake Louise, which made getting out of the Rockies seem interminable. Eventually I emerged, hello foothills.

I rolled into Rocky Mountain House and decided to fuel up. I probably could have made it to the farm with plenty of gas to spare but I wasn't taking any chances. I also needed caffeine fuel (they called it 'coffee' but it was questionably so). That was where I encountered the dust storm. As I was standing at the gas pump, a little pile of dust gathered around my feet. I was glad that I was wearing leggings under my dress, not only because my skirt flew up, but also because, well, dust just shouldn't go in some places.

The wind and the rain continued. I made the mistake of going through Red Deer instead of just heading straight for highway 2. I think that delay (with all the road construction and detours) cost me about 45 minutes.

I had a vague idea of where Lori lived. I've been there dozens of times before but I had never actually driven it myself. I didn't map it on my GPS before I left (duh!) I didn't ask her for the nth time "which road do you live on again?" I thought if I could find Bashaw and New Norway, I could figure it out. I knew it was east of Ponoka & Wetaskiwin. I knew it was south of Camrose. I was fairly confident I could find it.

Turns out it was quite a bit further than I thought. I was starting to get nervous about maybe being on the wrong secondary highway. Then I saw the sign for Meeting Creek. A ha! That was where Lori's mother-in-law grew up. I knew I was close.

Finally I saw the sign that said "Edberg thattaway" (paraphrased, mind you) and I knew we were there. Relief! I was tired, hungry, grumpy since Sam had been MEOWing in my ear all day, and really had to pee.

I pulled up around the back just before 7:00 in preparation for unloading. The winds were so strong they were (as we say on the coast) blowing a gale. The kids were SO EXCITED to see Auntie and everyone wanted to help and Sam was freaking out and there were kitties and other dogs all over the place and I just wanted to pee and get the kitty to her safe hiding place. It was a bit overwhelming, really. I forgot to call/text Dan to let him know I had arrived safe.

Lori hadn't prepared any supper for me, so she defrosted some hot dogs and buns. It didn't matter, I just needed food, really. I got Sam safely tucked away downstairs, set up our bed (I brought our mattress & bedding), and she has been hanging out down there ever since. It took a while to calm the kids down and then put them to bed. Then I stayed up chatting with Lori until nearly 11pm. (Remember, this is late for me - I'm used to being in bed asleep before 10pm). So much to do, to talk about, to get. But when I did finally get to bed that night, I slept a very good sleep. So too, did Sam.

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