Day 18. Friday 17th May. Calgary

It didn’t take too much persuading for Jan & Bruce to get us to stay another day. Made sense too and allowed us to get to see some of the city and update our blog!. Particularly when the temperature is around 5deg and its raining steadily outside.

Our hosts were up early and off to work while we showered and had a relaxing breakfast. We have only been going on the road for a few days but washing of clothes is a constant.  Jen sorted stuff for washing by machine.

It took an age to get the wagon started and only achieved it with the help of a shot of ether. 

On that subject, the Land Rover Club of Alberta, based in the capital, Edmonton are arranging for a new filter housing which we will pick up on our way through in, about a month. 

Driving into the city we had decided to visit the museum but the sat nav took us into a residential street and locals didn’t seem to know where the museum was! 

The Museum featured some interesting displays with a major focus on the petrochemical industry. This is a hotly debated subject in Alberta. Alberta provides perhaps 80% of the petroleum needs of the whole country and Albertans are sensitive to the federal taxation and desire by Ottawa for the spoils to be shared by the other provinces. Back in the 70’s during fuel rationing days, the government under Pierre Trudeau, created a standoff with the oil companies that saw them pack up and leave the province. You could say there were entrenched attitudes on all three sides. 

Tar sands are now providing huge quantities of crude. Neighbouring British Columbia are threatening to disallow a pipeline to cross their territory, denying the oil a shipping export point. Alberta are talking about cutting off BC access to their oil!! A lot of feeling in both provinces. 

Interestingly, Bruce tells us that the US oil industry have been funding the Greens in an effort to shut Alberta oil out of their markets. Am I surprised to learn this!

The museum is featuring a Dior exhibit that we noted on the way past. I suspect associated with that, were perhaps hundreds of students in the the most extreme fashion attire, along with hair and make-up, walking around the city. 

Perhaps the most outstanding feature of Calgary is a large tower, similar to the one in Auckland. We decided that a visit to the top a wasted effort, as visibility was down to a few hundred meters. 

Jan & Bruce have a beautiful house and are wonderful hosts. We are truly blessed to be in such a comfortable accommodating environment with conditions outside being so challenging for camping.  

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