O Canada! – #8

My passport and vehicle registrations were in order and I wasn’t carrying any contraband, so what was this anxiety about crossing into Canada?  The line leading up to the border station was long and slow-moving.

 Crossing

 

Eventually I reached the border and was greeted by an officer.  He asked me where I was going and how long I would be in Canada.  He also wanted to know if I had any alcohol or firearms, but was unconcerned about the fruits and veggies I had purchased the day before. Whew.  I was in!  This is the first sign that greeted me.

metric

As soon as I crossed into Canada, my cell phone had no service.  I would have to deal with that later.  I was trying to be aware of metric mileage signs and sort out kilometers to miles ratio so I would know how far it was to my campground.

That night, I stayed in Fort Steele, an interesting historic town in British Columbia. This far north, it was still light at 9 pm (Mountain Time). The campground was full because it was a 3-day weekend for Canada’s Civic/ Provincial Day.  The Fort Steele Railway Co runs a steam train that sounded its long, melancholy whistle before each trip.Fort Steele

I tried to upgrade my phone to an international calling plan. However, my 2-year old Samsung is not compatible with Verizon’s plan.  (They offered to upgrade my phone, but I said no thanks.)  I decided I could live without text and phone calls for a week.  I still had email and internet with a hotspot device.

When I saw this gas sign, I was very excited.  Wow!  Gas was only $1.41 in Canada.  The next day I found out it is sold PER LITER and this worked out to be a little over $4 per gallon.

Canadian gas

A sign at the campground laundromat referred to Loonies and Toonies.  What?  Someone explained that Loonies are Canada’s one-dollar coin, so named because there is a loon on one side.  Toonies are a take off on that name. They are the two-dollar coins.

The next morning, I woke up to a radio announcer saying the high would be 35 degrees today!  Oh yeah.  Celsius.  I roughed out a chart I could use in the car for kilometers per hour, distance and how much I’m actually paying for gas.

ChartMy Canadian cousin had suggested some interesting places along the way.  I visited Head-Smashed-In Buffalo Jump, a World Heritage Site.  This is one of many cliffs where the First Nations people would gather and stampede buffalo over the edge. It was a well-coordinated, sophisticated process. The tribes would use nearly every part of the buffalo for meat, robes, teepees, tools and other necessities. Buffalo

I was happy to arrive at my Cousin Donna’s house.  She has lived in Canada all her life.  On a neighborhood walk, we gave the exercise equipment a try.  Many public parks have such a set up.  Donna pointed out open areas where people cross country ski in the winter.

Tomorrow, we’re going on an adventure several hours north see the old family homestead!

One thought on “O Canada! – #8

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