Argh. I already wrote this blog earlier today, but this is not the blog I wrote. The effing thing did not save when I told it to save, after I’d done all the writing and uploading of photographs. Sooo frustrating! I threw my hands in the air and we went shopping all afternoon instead. Now it’s 8:40 p.m. and I’m starting over. This time I’m writing the text in WordPerfect (yes, WordPerfect, not Word… don’t even get me started on the inadequacy of Word compared to WordPerfect) and then cutting and pasting it into WordPress. Why? Because I can save my WordPerfect document without being on line to do it, and WordPerfect does automatic backups to my laptop not the Cloud (or whatever), thereby reducing the likelihood of losing everything I’ve written. Onwards:
Our first night in the trailer and we looked at each other in peace acknowledging how comfortable we are in Northern Spirit. Honestly, she is perfect for us. We’re starting to put some personal touches to her, like a fruit hammock in the kitchen (go ahead, call it a banana hammock and have a good laugh; Dan and Jarod both did when I told them I was buying it…), a mesh magazine pouch for the bathroom, a motion sensing light near the door, a laundry rack attached to the rear bumper. Dan’s installed a remote tire sensor for the trailer tires, and he’s going to try connecting the Wheresafe GPS tracker trickle charger to the solar panels to see if it will keep it charged enough to last over the winter until we come back in the spring.
We left Tillabrook in the morning with the intention of visiting the Saamis Tepee in Medicine Hat, but it was raining so we nixed that idea and kept going. Dan and I are in disagreement about whether or not we’ve already visited the tepee. He seems to think we have, but I have no recollection whatsoever of doing so. Not the Saamis Tepee, anyway. We’ll just have to keep stewing on that and see if we can find any evidence one way or another when we get home.
We stopped in Maple Creek at The Rockin’ Horse Cookhouse and Bar for lunch. Cool little place with great service and good food. We continued on, and about half an hour out the weather was clear and the roads were dry, so we figured it was a good time for me to try my hand at driving with the trailer. Dan was right, it’s not a big deal, I had nothing to worry about. Of course, it helped that there wasn’t much (if any) wind and we were driving on the Trans-Canada, which is a divided four-lane highway. I was comfortable enough that I drove us all the way into our campsite at Trail Campground in Swift Current. Admittedly, the campsite was a pull-through, so it’s really hard to mess that up, but I did have to get off the divided highway and proceed a little ways on a normal two-way road and through the gravel campground. I’ll take whatever wins I can get.
The campground was well laid out and full-service, although we were only staying the one night so we just used the power and water. The campground attendant was really friendly and accommodating. We ventured into downtown Swift Current for supper at Mei Mei Chinese Restaurant, which turned out to be a great choice. Clearly the community agreed because the place was crazy busy. We had noticed some buildings that were architecturally interesting, so we decided to go for a walk after supper. I really like seeing old stone/brick buildings continuing to be used. I’m hopeful we can come by some time during daytime hours to get a look inside, especially at the courthouse.
We left Trail Saturday morning with me driving the first shift to Moose Jaw. We stopped for lunch at Buds and Suds Carwash and Grill. Why? Why not? I was searching for a place to stop, they have good reviews, and I liked their name. It was another good choice. The food was good, the servers were friendly, and we’re pretty sure we recognized the guy who was working the outside bar from Yellowknife. Of course, we didn’t place him until after we left, so didn’t actually ask him, but he seemed familiar. Certainly someone from Yellowknife had an impact on the place because we noted the Ragged Ass Road sign over the back door. It also appeared to be a biker place, given half a dozen of them showed up for some kind of party while we were there. It was a good place to stop and I would recommend it.
Dan drove the rest of the way to Kings Acres Campground east of Regina. Zoe (remember our Garmin?) Took us off the Trans-Canada and directed us south around Regina. It was a nice little drive and probably much faster than going through Regina. The roads were pretty good, too, for Saskatchewan. We passed through Rouleau, but didn’t stop. We didn’t recognize the Corner Gas site until we had passed it, and decided we’d come back when we weren’t hauling the trailer with us.
We are really enjoying our time at Kings Acres Campground so far. It has full-service sites, large lots, plenty of trees, and laundry on site. It’s right on Victoria Street across from Costco, but honestly we haven’t been bothered by traffic noises. They provide portable firepits made out of washing machine barrels. They’re really cool and work really well.
My brother Martin and his GF Charlene came by that first evening for a visit, and then the next day they introduced us to Coney Island Poutine Café for lunch. Wow! So many choices… It’s worth the carb overload. We made up for that when they took us on a walking tour of Depot, and then Martin showed off his new-to-him Suzuki Marauder 800 before bringing us to his new place. He just moved to Regina in March and bought a perfect 2-storey condo in a local heritage building that used to be a warehouse. It’s a great place. We ended Sunday having a BBQ visit with Dan’s Kuppenbender cousins who live in Regina. It was a great visit with family we hadn’t seen in years. The whole day was great.
Monday was a chillaxin’ kind of day. We didn’t go see or do anything, we just stuck around the campsite, putzing around in the trailer installing various items we brought with us. We made the left over burgers for lunch and supper, and I made Sunny Boy Muffins. The pizza stone I bought to put in the propane oven did exactly what I read it would do: it evened out the heat beautifully resulting in perfect muffins. I’m still trying to master using the stove top burners, though. It’s such an intense heat, I’m finding it hard to regulate so that I don’t burn or overcook the food. I guess that’s just one more thing that practice makes perfect, so I’ll keep working at it.
I guess that’s really about it at this point, so I’ll bid you all a good night.