June 8, 2009 - Monday - After breakfast we packed a container with necessities for 3 days, moved the motor home into storage and headed for Canada. We found the Lakeside RV Park next to Maple Grove. Originally we wanted to stay at Lakeside but they did not have room. It was a few dollars cheaper. They only charged $5.00 a day for storing our RV. We were excited to spend time with Samira and Dorian. They live in Surry, BC. Surry is close to Vancouver, BC.
We got across the border with out any problem, but as soon as we crossed we knew we were in a different Country. We did not want to get to their home to early because we knew they would not be home until after 4:00pm. We found a Dairy Queen (DQ) and ordered off of their specials menu. The reality hit when we went to pay, we did not have the right kind of money. Would you believe this woman who was at the counter at the same time we were asked how much was our bill? The server said $6.00 and she whipped out the money and paid our bill. WOW! Surprised we were! She welcomed us the Canada. When we arrived at our friends home Samira was there waiting for us. We had told her not to worry about feeding us. I did not want to have a full tummy, because I was teaching the local clown club that evening. Samira went with me to the class. In all 8 folks attended. They were great to teach. They seemed to really enjoy everything we did. They were a great group. We were there for 3 hours. I think I could have stayed until midnight (I got tired darn). When we arrived back home the two guys were locked in conversation enjoying very smooth and expensive Scotch (imported from Scotland - $100.00 a bottle}. Dorian prides himself on his bar and its contents. We all chatted until even a tooth pick would not hold up our eyelids.
DORIAN & BILL
SAMIRA & ROSEMARIE
SAMIRA & DORIAN'S HOME IN BC
SOME OF THE MIME CLASS IN BC
THE AIR TRAIN TO DOWNTOWN
THE BIG BUS
June 9, 2009 - Tuesday - We were treated to some home made muffins and farm honey. Wow, amazing flavors. We ate while they had green good for the health drinks. Samira drove us to the Air Train so we could explore Vancouver. The Air Train is like a monorail but there are 2 sets of tracks and trains go both directions. She was so cute when she insisted on helping us buy our tickets. We felt well taken care of. The tickets cost $7.00 one way for 2 seniors. In a way it was good she helped because they use the word consideration as a term for seniors, students or military for discounted tickets. The Air Train took 45 minutes to get us to the heart of town. We were surprised at the number of high rise condos in this area. We have never seen anything like that. There are 3 million people living there and most of them live in condos. We bought tickets for the Big Bus Tour. This is like the ones in the states. The tour took 1 1/2hours if you stayed on, but there were 20 stops you could get off at will and get on the next Big Bus that came by. We decided to get off at 3 different stops. See pictures. The city seems to have a very relaxed energy. When we arrived in town we wanted to use the restroom, but there were none in the train station, Weird! Canada can not boast on easy to find public washrooms (as they call them). We found a washroom it a building across the street and then headed for the bus. We had a problem with purchasing tickets on line but worked out everything when we arrived. The young manager could not believe that a transaction on line could go wrong. He learned the reality and we received a well warranted apology. Vancouver is lovely. Stanley Park and all the beaches were spectacular. One of our stops was Grandville Island. We had a ball there eating and shopping. We shared a table with some people from England. They ate hotdogs while we indulged in Chinese. They were done quickly and then we were joined by a guy form Portugal. It was a nice break and we enjoyed the plate of food we split. When we got back to Surry, Samira picked us up at the station. We had brought steaks with us from the US and we had them for dinner. Dorian prepared the stakes and Samira made baked potato, ears of corn and salad. YUM! We drank martinis; had great conversation yet again and we all went to bed happy.
ROSEMARIE WITH THE BRIDGE IN THE BACKGROUND
THE GRANDVILLE BRIDGE
These pictures are from Grandville Island
MINI FERRY TO GRANDVILLE ISLAND
A VIEW ON THE ISLAND
A WONDERFUL POND ON GRANDVILLE ISLAND
VIEW OF VANCOUVER FROM GRANDVILLE ISLAND
THIS IS A GREAT EXAMPLE OF THE HIGH RISES IN VANCOUVER
ON DISPLAY AT THE ISLAND
INTERESTING BUILDING IN VANCOUVER AT THE TOP A FANCY RESTAURANT
MOLSON IS THE BEER OF CANADA
THIS IS THE MOLSON COMPANY
June 12, 2009 - Wednesday - We enjoyed the same breakfast plus home made granola, but it was a bit later when we got up. You know how those late nights can be. Unfortunately they had to go to work. We relived the same turn of events minus the problem with the ticket purchase. This time we did buy our own tickets, but she did not drive off until she was sure we were safe. We loved the way she took care of us. We did get Canadian money by now. I sold a bunch of DVD's and we used that money for our fun. We re-boarded the bus for second day (included in the price) and headed out. We had decided on 3 stops this day. One was Robson at Burrard, Chinatown, and Gastown. First we walked the Robson shopping area, but did not buy anything, then Back on the bus to Chinatown. There Chinatown is the second largest in North America. We saw and smelled so weird and stinky stuff. We were not as impressed as we were with the number one Chinatown in San Francisco. We found this interesting place to eat. The place was filled with Chinamen, so we figured it must be good. They had a huge menu with things we had never heard of. We had soup just filled with wantons, beef 'n noodles and an interesting Chinese chicken sandwich, all of which we split. The girls kept coming for from the kitchen with all kind of baked breads. I would have like to tried some other things, but we were to full. We strolled all over and ended up in an area that was filled with the downtrodden and people that seemed off in some way. We decided this was not a good area and got out of there. When we boarded the bus again we over heard the bus drives telling the folks who got off not to turn left at this certain corned. The other driver forgot to tell us. We bought a couple a small trinkets in Chinatown then we got back on the bus. Our last stop was Gastown. This place is rich in history. The original settlers open a tavern here. One guy had whiskey and a family and he told the men of the community if they would build him a home with a bar he would share he spirits. In no time at all it was built and this became the first settlement in Vancouver. Vancouver was named after an explorer. He named most of the landmarks in this area. Others named the city to honor him. After we got our eyes full will lots of sights we headed for Scurry. Samira was there to pick us up. We had a fabulous dinner. A special pasta dish made with sun dried tomatoes, YUM, spareribs and the best Cesar Salad ever. They are great host. Both nights we had really good home made special carrot cake. Samira is known for her baking. The cloths are getting tighter! We drank midnight martinis and indulged in great conversation and laughter. Late to bed, early to rise! We had to head out the next morning.
NOTE ABOVE ABOUT THIS TREE
GASTOWN STEAMING CLOCK
SEE THE TREE ON TOP OF THE BUILDING? THAT TREE IS THERE TO HONOR THE TREES THAT USE TO BE IN VANCOUVER. THE BUILDING AND TREE ARE THE SAME HEIGHT THE TREES USE TO BE. VANCOUVER GREW BECAUSE OF THE LUMBER INDUSTRY
THIS CAR IS COVERED WITH TOYS AND STUFF
A CLOSER LOOK
AND EVEN CLOSER LOOK
ONE OF THE AWESOME BEACHES IN VANCOUVER. THE CITY HAS WATER ON 3 SIDES
TOTEM POLES IN A SHOP IN VANCOUVER
CUT FROM ONE TREE
HERE WE ARE AT KIM'S RV PARK - GREAT SPOT
BREAKFAST AT THE LAKE
June 11, 2009 -Thursday - We were all up early and we ate our last wonderful muffins while they drank the green stuff. We got back to Everett around noon. We realized that the batteries that feed the inside of the motor home were dead. The refrigerator was starting to get warm. We only lost a few things, no big deal. The clean up took a little time. We moved the motor home to a regular RV plug in. Bill went to play golf and I work on the on line trip page. I made the mistake of creating the page in Word. That works well as long as you do not delete anything. I really messed up so I decided to redo everything in html. It is a lot more work, but I trust it. I know we will enjoy reading this in the future and hope other readers will as well. Bill played golf at Walter E. Hall again. He played with 3 guys and had a good time - 85. We just hung out and went to bed.
June 12, 2009 - Friday - We took our time today, had a leisurely breakfast, did laundry and headed for who knows? We did stop at a rest stop and cooked a steak, rice and corn. A mini feast in the middle of no place! We were both so pleased with our selves and it was the highlight of the day. We found a Flying J Plaza to stop for the night. All of the RV Parks around Spokane were about $40.00 a night. All we needed was a safe place to sleep. We called the plaza and they said they had room for us. It is free! We found most of the parking places that we could pull straight out of the next morning were already taken so we pulled in back of another rig. We noticed right away that a lot of the truckers ran there loud generators and/or motors. We were concerned we would not be able to sleep. It was after 8:00pm when we arrived. We have not had time to install our digital converter so we decided to watch the movie Ghost. The movie ended around 11:00pm and we were both tired. We tried to pretend the humming of all the noises around us were like music and believe it or not we both went right to sleep and sleep like babies.
June 13, 2009 Saturday - Today we are leaving the Flying J Truck Stop, Post Falls Idaho. We stopped in Kellogg, Idaho at the Wal-Mart Super Store and picked up food and stuff. We have decided to spend 2 nights in Lolo, Montana. We want to go to the capitol in Helena on Monday. We ate at a rest stop. I made a crab salad and corn on the cob. That is a great thing about motor homing. You can stop and eat where ever. We made it to Lolo and got checked into The Round Square Dance Center RV Park. Surprise, this is a center where folks come from all over the world to dance. They showed us their huge dance room and square clothing store. I was so impressed. We check in and got set up. Bill was beat and rested. Around 7:30 I went to the center and sat and watched the people dance. There were not too many people because there was a big dance about 100 miles south and they thought most people went there. The guy who was the caller was not friendly with me. I don't think he liked my personality. I was in a fun mood when I met him and I think I put him off. Oh Well. His wife was really nice and so was the staff. I picked out a few items at the store and said I would return tomorrow to pick them up. I went back to the RV and Bill & I enjoyed each others company and watched "The Wives Club" on TV
June 14, 2009 - We went to play golf in mosquito hell at Linda Vista Public Golf Course Lolo. We were attached by gnats and mosquito. There were more mosquitoes there than either of us had ever experienced. We wondered why there were no golfers there when we arrived and it did not take long to figure it out. As the sun harmed up the air the mosquitoes seemed to disappear. We thought it was a regular course, but it was mostly par 3 and only 9 holes. They had nice greens and we had fun. Bill 63 Ro 68(good day). We went home and ate and Rosemarie went and picked up her stuff: One dress and several petty-coats. The petty-coats were on sale and she bough them all. She figured some clowns in San Diego might like the good price. We drove around the Missoula and stopped at Costco, Wal-Mart, and the Dollar Store. It was fun shopping, it had bee a while. That night Bill came with me and watched the dancers for a while and then we returned to the RV and watched Sister Act on TV
June 15, 2009 - Today we are heading for Helena MT. We are definitely are in Big Sky Country. The scenery is spectacular and we are enjoying everything. We drove straight to Helena with one stop to eating in the RV. We were anxious to get to the to Kim's Marina and RV Park on Canyon Ferry Lake. The Lake is 17 miles out side of Helena. After we ate we headed down Canyon Ferry Rd toward the Canyon Ferry Damn. We got a few miles outside of town and we were taken aback by the road situation. There was no road for 4 miles. We were on road repair. The worst thing was that this area had a downpour of ½ inch. It had not rained that much on that date since 1881 (lucky us). The mud was awful and Bill was really upset. The stress level in the RV made the walls vibrate. There were so many bumps. We thought the motor home would fall apart. When they do road repair here they take the old road out completely. They have only a few months to work and doing half the road is not an option. We were not happy campers. We both rejoiced when the 4 mile mess ended. When we finally got to the park we were Mr. & Mrs. Grouch. It got worse when we saw our car and parts of the RV, mod mobiles. All of the connections for the trailer were so dirty. When we went to pay we found out they really did not have full hookups, only electricity, and we could add water to our tank for $1.00 and use their showers for $2.00 each, and $5.00 to dump. Whoopee! We did get to park near the lake so we had to decide to get over it.
June 16 2009 - We got set up, washed off the car and headed for Norwegian Wood 9 hole par 3 course. It was a perfect fix for our feelings. This was a cute and fun place to play. We played a few holes more than one time. This made for a good score for both of us 30. This place was unique. When we arrived we were greeted by a train crossing with no train. There was Norwegian Troll and a really special elevated tee on the seventh hole. We really had fun here. There were some interesting cattle there as well. They were a mixture of Australian and another type of long horn. They had fur not hide. See pictures.
DON'T PUT YOUR HAND IN THE TROLLS MOUTH
HAIRY LONG HORNS
ANOTHER CLOSER VIEW
BABY LONG HORN
MONTANA STATE CAPITOL IN HELENA WITH A SCULPTURE OF MONTANA ON TOP 1900
THOMAS F MEAGHER ON HORSE BACK 1905
June 16, 2009 - Today we drove to Helena and went to the Montana State Capitol. This is the 41 state. The color seams were different: Italian red and green. We took a tour and learned more about the influence of Louis & Clarke on this state. Our tour guide Dallas was fun. See pictures. After the capitol tour we decided to eat at their cafeteria. We were served Salisbury stale on disposable plates. We were not impressed until we had our first taste. We forgot all about the plastic utensils. And just enjoyed the home made flavor.
THE ROTUNDA WITH DALLAS
TOP OF THE ROTUNDA
THE STATE SEAL
ITALIAN COLORS AND BEAUTIFUL STAINED GLASS
THE HOUSE OF REPRESENATIVES FEATURING WESTERN ART
MAUREEN & MIKE MANSFIELD MIKE WAS SENATES LONGEST SERVING MAJORITY LEADER
JEANNETTE RANKIN - FIRST WOMAN ELECTED TO THE US CONGRESS 1916
THE LAST CHANCE TRAIN TOUR
DINO IN LOVE
ORIGINAL GOVERNOR'S MANSION
HISTORICAL HOME IN HELENA
AN AIRPLANE FLEW THROUGH THESE TWO TOWERS IN HELENA
LUNCH AT YELLOWSTONE NATIONAL PARK
We then header for the last chance train (ABOVE) and it took us on a city historical tour. To facts we thought were interesting: 1. the city had a contest to get its name. The name was to be Helena (pronounced hell lane na) because it was thought to be unique, but they found out the man who offered it came from a town of the same name so they changed it to Helena - 2. when the people voted to have Helena (pronounced hell la na) as the state capitol there was a recount demanded by one faction a few years after the vote and they found out there were twice as many votes as there were registered voter. They decide to let it go and keep Helena. The tour was fun. Our tour guide Liz was cut and funny and she loved her job. We did some work on the RV when we returned to the park, watched "Don't Say a Word" and went to bed.
UPPER FALLS AT YELLOWSTONE
June 17, 2009 - We are on our way again heading for Cameron MT. We got to Cameron around 3:00pm. The place we were going to stay at was closed. We heard women who owned it died in a car accident. We heard that she was an alcoholic and her drunk boyfriend drove them off a cliff because he was under the influence. About 4 mile further we found this run down park. It was on Earthquake Lake and it was appropriately named The Slide Inn. This is a haven for fisherman and even though it is run down it is full of folks. All of the RV places where the electric works are full (A lot do not work). We decided to stay 2 nights. It is 30 miles from Yellowstone and we are going to spend the day there tomorrow. It is cold here. I guess they had snow last week here. One exciting thing that happened when Rosemarie used the potty, as soon as she sat down a mouse ran by her feet. Bill heard this scream and they both had a good laugh. This is a beautiful area really, breathe taking beauty. There was an earthquake that created the lake and took out the highway. That was many years ago. We always hear about California being the earthquake capitol of the country, but we have learned there have been earthquakes all over our country.
June 18, 2009 - We headed out early for Yellowstone. We traced the steps we made in 1979 with the children. We saw Old Faithful, the hot springs, Artist Point and lots of Bison and other animals. There were a lot of changes in the park. Old Faithful's mound seemed higher. The fires in the Park really ruined the look of the place. There were dead trees laying ever place or sticking up dead between the new trees that nature was supplying to take their place. We both think the government should clear away the rubble. They are taking that keeping it natural too far. It was man who caused the huge fires by not letting the smaller fire burn over many years. Then they decide to let nature have her way, but what mess we have made. We have decided to write to government officials and give them a few suggestions about what they could do to clean up and make money. When we were here 30 years ago we saw bears, dear and Elk. We think we remember the ranger saying they were going to re-introduce Bison back into the park. We think they have done just that. Bison are the big traffic jammers these days. We had them come right next to the car. They are as big as the car so this was very exciting. We have video. We did see 2 big daddy elk, some females, a few dear, baled eagle nest with bird, and a lot more human animals. We drove the west side of the park and stayed in the park for 8 hours. We try to buy a refrigerator magnet in place we visit. We are always on the hunt for the perfect magnet and we found it at the gift shop with a few other items we just had to have. We did not see any bears. They have relocated the bears and taken away the food source that brought them to close to people. We ate at the Colonel's and we ate too much and we both suffered for it. We are glad we came and probable will never return.
STEAMING WATER AN EXAMPLE OF MANY THAT ARE IN THE PARK
OLD FAITHFUL - GOES OFF EVERY HOUR
HOT POOL OF WATER
BISON & CALFS
BIG DADDY ELK
THIS BISON WAS RIGHT NEXT TO OUR CAR WE HAVE IT ON VIDEO - VERY EXCITING