So, if you read yesterday's blog, you'll not be surprised that we got an early start this morning, because why stay any longer in the place-that-shall-not-be-named?
(I actually got chastised for whining too much about it).
The pièce de résistance was still to come this morning, though. I was out the door for a run at 7am, and I found a small river valley with a trail system lacing through it. I’d just reached the turnaround point and was heading back when this happened:
me: (running along path, nobody else in sight)
(noise of bicycle bell behind)
woman: (singsong voice) helloooo, hellooo, hellooo!!!
me (over shoulder): I can hear you
woman on bike (drawing even, still in singsong voice): You should have moved right
me: (in equally singsong voice) F*@k you.
Yeah. Ok. ‘Nuff said.
We were on the road by nine, and we covered the rest of Manitoba and got well into Saskatchewan before detouring north to the Qu’Appelle Valley, an amazing, fairy-tale landscape of rounded hills, lakes and a serpentine river. There we stopped for three wonderful hours with Uncle Harley and Aunt Marianne, who have a home on Pasqua Lake. The dogs went for a swim and we chatted on the deck and had a delicious meal. Then we reluctantly said our goodbyes, with 300 kilometres still to go to Swift Current. Fortunately, we ‘gained’ another hour as we crossed the Saskatchewan border, so our 8-hour drive is only 7 hours by the clock.
What to say about the Prairies? I was honestly steeling myself for a boring, tedious drive, but the vastness is simply indescribable, magical. The skies have a well-earned reputation for hugeness, and the horizons are endless. I was constantly taking pictures through the car window…these are the ones that I am posting today. Though some images may look stormy, we actually encountered only one downpour. The quality may not be perfect, but I hope that these images capture and express some of the beauty that we drove through.
Tomorrow we forge onward, through the rest of Saskatchewan and a slice of Alberta, with our next stop just across the border in British Columbia. I am excited to get my first glimpse of the Rockies rising out of the horizon.