Friday, February 13, 2009

The first five days

Feb 9th -We left home at 4.45am and it was fine and clear driving at first until it started to snow around Prince George and even when we turned south towards the lower mainland we kept company with the snow clouds all the way down and the first night we  stayed in Hope. It was quite cold but I did try to get a walk but just as I set out hail started to come down quite hard and I got back to the motel as quickly as I could. The motel we stayed in was fine but had omitted to warm the room  before we got there, it took ages for me to feel warm after being hailed upon.

Feb 10 -We woke to snow, as many parts of lower BC had been hit by freak snow storms but we got off in time and arrived at the border about 9:30 am.  The border guard was very pleasant but looked like he just had a part-time job from school, but everyone looks so young when you get to sixty one. We had to throw some oranges away as he explained that even though they came from the US they were not allowed back in to the States because the skins carried some type of canker that could re-infect the crops. I won't grate orange peel into anything ever again after his explanation. Shortly after we crossed the border and got on to the I-5 the weather turned vile and for six hours the driving was very difficult but we finally made it to Salem, Oregon where we planned to stay for our first night in the States. We have just returned from a fabulous meal at Applebees . There is no sales tax in Oregon and things seem so cheap here even after doing the exchange into Canadian dollars. So now we are relaxing in our motel before turning in for the night.

Feb 11-We left Salem around 9am and the first part of the journey down I-5 was lovely. It was a pleasure to see the lambs and new born calves in the fields which were so green. The sky was blue and the traffic flowed along nicely but unfortunately we must have brought BC weather with us because we soon started to experienced slippery roads and some really horrid weather again on this leg of the trip. The I-5 at the California border had been closed for a while due to a blizzard and the traffic had backed up until the road opened again. I have never seen so many trucks at one time. We drove for miles in convoy. We did get a glimpse of Mount Shasta and tried to take a photo but it wasn't very good so was not worth putting up here. When we got to Redding California the weather seemed to cooperate and dry up and the sun poked its head out. There are acres and acres of fruit trees in the area and they were just coming into bloom and one could see pink almost to the horizon. We were glad to get to our intended overnight stop in Red Bluff as it had been a tiring day. The guys had bought some booze at the border but later found out they weren't allowed to take it into Mexico so they have valiantly been trying to use it up each evening at the motel. They had a couple of drinks before going out to dinner this evening and it was like going out with two adolescents.

Feb 12 -Today we are heading for Buttonwillow to spend the night. I hope to get hooked up to the Internet there and send a few emails and get this published. I have been trying to get Internet access for the last two nights but have not been able to do so. We arrived in Buttonwillow and it is a haven for truckers. Literally hundreds of trucks in all colours, really fancy rigs overnight there, probably because the accommodation and  food is  cheap and very good. We had a meal at a really superb buffet for $7.99 each, and all you could eat, it was so good we plan to stop for the buffet breakfast be.fore leaving tomorrow. At $5.99 you couldn't beat it.

Feb 13 -Gorgeous weather at last, better than at home in the middle of summer.  The drive was quite interesting early on going through rolling hills but gradually as we came into the flat desert that went on for miles and miles it was a bit boring. Incredibly there are mobile homes dotted here and there in the desert where there was a bit of moisture and live miles from civilization and no other homes anywhere nearby. This afternoon our friend had a problem with his car, and we had to stop at a place called Needles to get it fixed. We were told it gets really hot in summer up to 140F, can you imagine. The Colorado river runs through Needles and the mountains are a bit spiky hence the name. I asked hubby to take some photos while we waited for our friend's car to be fixed but he said the mountains would not show up in a photo very well. So I still don't have any photos as yet. I am in the yard of the car repair place typing today's entry. I hope I can get on to the Internet later.


Jeni said...

Well gee, Vic -had I known you were going to go through Needles, California, I'd have given you my ex-husband's phone number and address and you could have stopped and said hello to him. He says he lives on the outskirts of Laughlin, Nev by the last telephone pole before you go into California! Wave to him then as you go by will ya?
Have a safe trip now the rest of the way into Mexico.

Cicero Sings said...

Glad to hear that you are safe though it sure sounds like you've had the time of it weather and road condition wise!

I had to laugh at the guys valiantly drinking up their booze!

My Mom and Dad lived in Tucson for a while. It can get really hot down there in the summer ... not MY cup of tea. I'd take cold any day.

Skittles said...

How exciting to be off on an adventure!!! I can't wait to read more!!!!