Not quite according to plan, but still okay (day 336)

Here we are. Back again. Safe and sound. Not sure quite what that means actually. The ‘safe’ bit I get. But ‘sound’. What is that about?

Anyway. Christi is gone. Bye Christi. Again. Now I am travelling alone. Again. Although I am not alone at all actually. Just in theory. Thanks for the accomodation AST.

So we dig out the car in Lake Louise. I have never done this before. It is very exciting. Although I can see it would get quite irritating if you had to do it every day before you could drive anywhere. I learned how to drive out of snowdrifts too. Quickly. Straight back. And you can only do it if the snow is still soft and fluffy. Keep this in mind for when you do it. Hope it helps.

So we miss the turnoff south to Idaho. Turn around a ways down the road. Come back. Take the turnoff. Hmmm. The road to Idaho is closed. By snow, of course. Maybe this is not true. Perhaps the deer have mobilised and taken control of part of Highway 95. In either case it means the same thing for us, since we are not driving a snowplough. Change plans. My grand ideas of racing across Idaho are suddenly changed. Rossland, British Columbia, here we come. Via my first ever car ferry. Wheeee. Free too.

The hostel in Rossland is so laid back that it does not open during the day (the staff are too busy snowboarding), you check yourself out in the morning (ditto), and the keys to the rooms are stored in the doors. There seem to be lots of New Zealanders about on snowboarding holidays. Good idea, I think, looking with some chagrin at Christi’s broken wrist.

It is jam night on Tuesdays at the local bar. Great scene. By far the best of the three nights so far. There is even a guy with long hair, dressed in dunagarees and playing the banjo. But there is a total lack of eye-candy. Where are all the pretty snowboarding boys and girls?

And there is a guy who once went to New Zealand. (There are probably several, but this was one I talked to). A little too drunk to stand straight, or to talk coherently (details of his trip are obscure), he is not too drunk to dance. And dance he does. Amazingly. He is like what an albatross would look like if it stood upright. His arms seem long enough to loop around the moon. And the amazing lack of bodily control that he simulates (or maybe it is real) is quite astounding to observe.

I am excited to be in America (my first time, except for Hawaii) even though Washington is very flat (and cold) and even though the border guard guy was not in the slightest bit interested in our arrival.

Of course, Washington stops being flat at the mountains, which I think of as being just before we got lost in Seattle trying to find our friends. Seattle is easy to get lost in. Not like Vancouver at all really. Although I have managed to get lost there as well, of course. I mean you have to make an effort, don’t you?

Some of Seattle’s most interesting bits are underground, we discover, on the underground tour. Mention you read this and you don’t get a discount. Good tour though. And a walk around Pike Place. And to check out the troll and all the other outdoor sculptures (including one of Lenin, bizarrely) in some trendy part of town whose name escapes me.¬†

If our trip is about cities, then Abbotsford is next. Back across the border to Canada (not that you would really know, although Christi reckons she can detect a different atmosphere). Of course we got lost on the way. As you do. Christi’s uncle and aunt, generous souls with home-made beer, a great view across to Mount Baker and a misnamed driveway (since you can not drive up it a lot of the time). You can see it in the picture, actually.

I would be the first to admit that my hair is not the tidiest at the moment. Those of you who have known me any length of time might point out that my hair is seldom particularly tidy, in fact. But what is a little bed-head between friends?

Having just stepped out of bed, Christi’s uncle says, and I quote to the best of my ability, “Your hair doesn’t look any different”, implying that my current state of gravity defying bed-head can not be excused on the basis that I have just dozed several hours away on my wavy locks. How distressing, I think. But, disturbingly, how probably true.

And it all ends with a dinner. Many things do, I have discovered. Not least of them epic road trips around BC. This time a fabulous French restaurant. Vancouver turns on its best nasty, cold rainstorm for us. Nice.