Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Trip North part 4

This is my last post about my trip to Canada. Got home quite late Monday night and I'm still unpacking and recuperating!! I love going, enjoy listening to books on CD as I go and didn't get tired this time but, boy, Tuesday morning I was exhausted!! Sunday I drove 12 hours and Monday 14 hours. Knowing I was not going to have to find a hotel made me just relax and head on down the road to home!

Last Wednesday we spent visiting family in Winnipeg. Got to reconnect with a cousin I hadn't seen in over 30 years. Also my sister came with me to see a cousin she hadn't seen in about as many years altho I have met her a time or two inbetween. It's all good. Facebook has made it so much easier to find friends. While I was at my sister's, we were fooling around online and I found a high school friend I hadn't seen since we graduated in 1970! She now lives in Alberta and has a bunch of grandchildren, the newest being 5 month old triplets! Imagine that!
Thursday we headed south to Niverville where I grew up. In the last few years our house has disappeared. I don't know if they bulldozed it or moved it, but there's a store there now. We used to live on the main highway near town and that stretch is now businesses. That's sad. But it's the way life goes. Nothing stays quite the same!
From there we headed to Altona. My parents lived there for over 20 years after I graduated from high school. This trip was kind of a spur of the moment thing but Mom had called her good friend Helen and she had arranged for the old gang to get together for pot luck. Mom was so surprised and thrilled to see all her friends again. They do keep up on the phone but it's not the same as seeing each other.

Friday Mom had dialysis and my sister and I went shopping in Winkler. The best place to go is the MCC store. That's a store that sells used items. The sales people are all volunteer and all the money goes to help the Mennonite Central Committee projects around the world. I got a bunch of buttons at the one in Altona. Mom used to work at that one and the lady in charge was there and she let me go through the box of buttons she had just processed and hadn't taken out into the shop yet!
We both found a few things at the one in Winkler.
I used to teach first grade in Winkler back in the mid 70s. This building is the one I taught in. It's a maintenance shop now. They've closed off most of the windows. We had a wall of windows when I was there.  It was the original 4 room school and is quite old. My class the last year was in the front right side. The other years I'd been in the one behind it facing the playground in the back. The new school is on the right and is much bigger. Winkler is now a city. I don't think there's another elementary school there but I could be wrong. It has been a long time since I was there. We used to make the kids go out even if it was 20 below to just get their blood moving for a bit before getting them back to work!
 Something new since I lived here was this little, long, narrow park a few blocks from where I'd lived. In summer they fill it with flowers. The paths are nice and there's a fountain. Also a "gardener" and "chickens". Winkler is  a predominantly Mennonite community and Mennonite communities are known for their flowers. This garden is just an extension of it all. My Mom always had alot of flowers in her yard. They kept seeds from year to year and just bought some to fill in what they didn't have.

 Saturday morning we drove to Steinbach. My best friend Bettie lives there. She and her husband own Harv's air service. It's an air field and they teach flying. Their 3 sons are all involved in the business.  They teach people from around the world how to fly airplanes. Bettie and I have always kept up over the years. The internet has really helped that and we email each other every few weeks just to keep up.

 We got back to Winnipeg about 4pm on Saturday. Back to my sister in law's place. She is fixing up her basement so that she can rent it out this winter to a college student. Before we had left on Thursday, we'd found her some fabric for curtains down there. There are 4 windows, these kind of smaller above ground ones. She asked my sister and me to sew some of them so I pulled out my machine from the car and we very carefully measured and sewed 2 windows worth. The third window in that area is going to be a bit tricky and I'm not sure she had everything she needed for the window in the bedroom. It was amazing the difference that those curtains made down there. It just cheered up the space immensely. She has some finishing left to do in there but she'll be ready when her tenant comes this Friday.

 Sunday morning we left after 7am. Stopping on the way at Tim Hortons on St Mary's on the way to the Perimeter around Winnipeg. Got an apple fritter. They were out of dutchies, rats! Tim Hortons is so much better than Krispy Kreme. Alot more variety and choices. It is the place to go for a snack or meal. They sell doughnuts but also bagels and sandwiches and soup. My only problem is they only take mastercard, not visa and they have pepsi products. I don't drink coffee and in summer it's too hot for hot tea!
We drove along the Perimeter for a few miles, then I exited south onto Hwy 75 and my Mom and sister continued on the Perimeter til they got to Hwy #1 and headed west back to Moose Jaw.
This field is an example of what I saw driving. It's kind of hard to stop and take pictures along the interstate plus I had so many miles to go! The ditch, a fence, and road separate the highway from the corn field. This is in North Dakota just south of Fargo. The sky goes for miles and you see farms and trees in the distance. The corn is green and growing. The further south you drive, the topography changes. I didn't stop for a picture. However, the land is more rolling with small hills. The corn changes too. I noticed it as I got into Missouri. The corn was starting to dry up. By the time I hit Tennessee, some of the fields were totally dried up, some still had a few green leaves on the plants. None had been harvested yet. I was wondering how long it would take for that to happen. The grain fields were being harvested already back home and alot as I drove down the states. There'd been alot of rain recently so the fields were drying, waiting for the right conditions to harvest.

So that's the end of my trip. I have to get a warp on my loom, at least by tomorrow and I"ll be weaving again. Going home is wonderful. Being with family is the best! I'm just glad that I still have my Mom and family to go see. Next year I"ll do it all over again!


LA said...

I'm so glad you had such a wonderful visit with your family. You got a lot done during that visit!!! Now....back to "real life" and all your projects.

Bonnie said...

How wonderful to reconnect with family and friends. Glad you made it safe and sound. It is interesting the differnece in the scenery while driving from state to state.

Tina J said...

I'm glad you had such a good trip!