On our last morning in Winnipeg, Frank and I were out of bed by 6:00 a.m. and on the road by 8:00 a.m.
We filled the tanks for $1.23 a litre.
By10:00 a.m. we were 161 km. from the Saskatchewan border. The terrain is all flat and farmland. To my surprise I see lots of birch trees, far more than in Ontario.
We passed by many road signs with big letters stating…
“Turn In Poachers @1-800-….
At long last, we were finally in Saskatchewan and a new time zone which was two hours behind home time.
We stopped for gas and in the time it takes took for the friendly gas station attendant to clean our windshield we had heard from him three different recounts of bear attacks on his family and friends in the past two days.
Just imagine how much you can learn from him over a cup of coffee.
All of my life, I’ve been told stories of how flat the prairies are.
From my far left to my far right there are only fields. No trees, no brush, just wheat covered fields.
Even though the flat land gives a wide berth for the eye to see, at no time can I ever see more than a dozen cars and trucks travelling up and down the length of the highway.
At 12:30 we took the turnoff which would take us to Moose Jaw.
It was at about here where I could not help but notice how unusual this terrain was for me. There was nothing at all familiar about this ground which proved to me that there is always more that we are unfamiliar with than there is more that we are familiar with. For someone with a negative sense of direction like me this can be disconcerting to the senses.
Then, there are the abundance of salt swamps along the highway which makes me wonder if maybe we hadn’t been somehow invaded by salt dependant alien life forms who currently live among us, not unlike Natasha Yar’s demise in STAR TREK THE NEXT GENERATION episode SKIN OF EVIL.
My primary school teachers always did write in my report card that I had a very vivid imagination.
Add to this mixture the fact the Frank has told me that tonight we would be boon-docking at Walmart’s. This is because enlightened campers everywhere know how Walmart welcomes campers to stay for free in their parking lots.
This was something that I always knew was possible, yet thought would never happen to me.
By two in the afternoon we were somewhat comfortably situated among the other campers in front of Moose Jaw’s Walmart.
When Frank checked the tanks he found out we had only one third of a tankful of water and electricity was down by a third as well. We were suspecting that the water was somehow able to slosh out on the rougher roads. As for the electricity, that turns out to be more of a continual problem.
Frank had suspected that the battery had always been somehow deficient. He discovered this during his monthly treks to the camper during the winter months. Yes, it was under warranty however it was able to hold enough of a charge that fell within owner’s manual limits.
We did invest in another battery before leaving home. However, Frank thinks he may have mistakingly left the furnace on after our practice shakedown at a nearby campground a week before our departure.
Now, this is the part where I learned that I could only look at a parking lot in the glaring sun for only so long. It was only 3:00 p.m.
Sunset was scheduled for 9:30.
After a warm afternoon nap we decided to keep things easy and opted for McDonald’s for dinner.
Frank and I found ourselves quietly sitting at the kitchen table watching the daylight slowly dim around us.
At 10:00 p.m. both the sun and Walmart’s indoor lights went out despite the steady stream of customers still entering the store in search of Walmart booty.
Let them shop, I told myself as I called it a night…
It had been a long day and I was more than ready for bed.