Kamloops, British Columbia, Canada
Trip Start Mar 26, 2008
64Trip End Dec 07, 2008
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Where I stayed
Debbie's and Ernie's House
We took a break at a great picnic area and enjoyed dipping our feet in the icecold glacial river water and playing a bit of baseball catch while we ate lunch at a picnic table with one eye open for bears.
We arrived in Kamloops and Samantha and I had a chance to meet our hosts, Ernie and Debbie.
I cooked dinner and we enjoyed some wine and a chance to get to know Debbie and Ernie. Debbie having just resigned from nursing has just taken up a job cruise nursing (so much for retirement) and Ernie works in the forestry industry (at present in a pulp mill) though he is off work for a short while after back surgery
Really interesting to talk to someone with so much experience in this industry that is so much the backbone of the economy in much of British Columbia. There is a huge issue at the moment with a pine beetle that is killing a huge number of the pine trees throughout the province. It is having a big impact on the industry and you will see in many of the photos of the landscape it looks like the trees are heading into autumn, only problem is these are evergreen pines and what you are seeing is dead or dying trees.
They also have two amazing dogs Kuma and Koda. Koda was an interesting dog. He was Akbash which was a turkish sheep dog, but they don't herd the sheep, they lay with them and protect them from wolves and other predators. He was huge and very regal and timid. Also with two cats we definitely had plenty of time with animals here, and the kids thoroughly enjoyed it. They even helped give latte the cat insulin as he had recently been diagnosed with diabetes.
We did a little school work while we were here, (school work has yet to feature highly in our time). Chris took the van for a service and then we did some sandal shopping at the mall
Ernie and Debbie treated us to a lovely dinner and we enjoyed a game of Bocce in the yard before dinner. It was boys versus girls and I don't like to make a huge deal of it but THE GIRLS WON!
One day we went to a wildlife park. They had a great exchange system and we took a plant fossil that Debbie gave us and the kids used that and some points from answering questions about fossils to be able to choose some things that they had for exchange. They took ages to choose from the rocks shells crystals and other fossils but came away with some great varieties of shells etc. Just what we needed to add to our luggage.
At the park we saw Grizzlies and Moose as well as seeing wolves being fed and learning alot about the hierachy of the pack. We watched them eat and all were pleased to see that cassie the Omega female wolf get some food after being bullied a bit by the others.
On our last day Chris and Samantha went out with Ernie to their Lake house on the Shuswap Lake. With no road access and a cool half hour boat ride to get there it was a real adventure and they enjoyed a cool swim in the Lake
The rest of us planned a day in town which was changed somewhat when a light came on saying check the engine in the van. Being an absolute expert on cars I stopped at the first garage and luckily the kind mechanic took a look straight away. It ended up being a hard-to-get-to perished rubber hose and he had to take the dashboard out to get at it.
We ended up having lunch nearby and heading home early afternoon only to have to return the van for two new tires that he suggested. Cass and Zack stayed home and Debbie and I went together and did a few jobs including going to the gardens and seeing all the highschool grads dressed for graduation dinner. WOW this is a big deal, major dresses and makeup. Debbie's daughter looked beautiful and so grown up.
Once again Ernie and Debbie cooked dinner and we enjoyed our last meal together, the kids laying about out on the grass and cuddling up to the dogs, sad to be saying good bye to them all, but so happy to have made new friends.
The next morning, routine kicked in and we packed the van in a flash and were off to Kelowna.