Had extreme difficulty getting online to post daily to this Blog. Was very frustrated, but overall a great trip. After leaving Clair’s home in Sudbury, taking that dreaded shortcut on Sultan Road, we trekked further north on the Trans Canada and stayed the night in Dryden. Then as usual up and away early and across the prairies for the next two days. Gail having never seen them you could tell she was in awe. However, after some time I’m sure even she wanted to see a hill or two. Made it to Regina by 7:00 pm on Monday.
Tuesday was a wonderful and awe inspiring day. Watching our nephew graduate the Academy was an extremely proud moment for all of us. He was a natural. Looked like he’d been with the Force for a long time. Had a great time while he gave us the tour after the day’s ceremonies. Also had a great time at the evening dinner and couldn’t help but think that this was somehow surreal. We’d never had someone go this far in our family. Yes, we have family members in careers we’re all extremely proud of, but somehow this was higher than that. Our nephew was about to embark on a career that would involve policing, possibly some dangerous situations, politics and a comradery and kinship with a partner that he would have to trust with his life (and vice versa). He could travel further afield in Canada and experience events in his life that we may possibly never know. Our “thoughts and prayers” (as they say) will always be with him.
Back on the road on Wednesday morning, after having to see to “Garmin” (Gail’s GPS system) and the RCMP Gift Shop. Garmin had decided to give up the ghost in and around Wawa, Ontario. Best Buy in Regina said there was no hope, that her homeland of China was calling. There had been trouble with her make and model and we were going to have to rely on the usual maps to get us home. With a good positive attitude we headed for home.
Decided to go the southern route – taking Highway No. 2 through North Dakota, Minnesota, Wisconsin and Michigan, crossing over at Sarnia. Made a two hour stop at Judy Garland’s birthplace in Grand Rapids, Minnesota. Had a great time with everyone buying souvenirs, Christmas Gifts and anything else we could find. Claudia got a hold of her friend whose daughter was a collector, and we managed to also pick up certain items for our niece (also an avid collector). At this point we had needed the break and it felt good to drop a coin or two.
Headed home and the rest of the way was tiring, stressing at times and boring at times. Managed to stay a night in Escabana, Michigan after an extremely long drive. he only room left in town, as there was a loggers’ convention on. Extremely expensive – $179.00 US for the night – but we had to bite the bullet.
Got stuck in huge truck traffic at Sarnia border crossing, but I snapped away with the digital camera all along the crossing – trucks, bridge, International Marker, flags flying below, and the like. Had to pass the time. Once we arrived at the gate, the Border Guard was taking his time interviewing us. Had to inquire about all of our names, each being a little different than what he was use to, I suppose. Then we were finally off and running and after a stop in London at Boston Pizza for a well-earned supper we made it back to Gail’s by 9:30 that evening. By the looks on our faces anyone could tell we were exhausted. Some of us didn’t know how much until after a couple of days of playing catch-up.
All in all, it was a trip we won’t forget. A trip we don’t regret. A trip where we learned more about each other than I’m sure some us wanted to. We’ve also learned that sometimes togetherness can be a little over-rated!