First up. Happy Birthday Charley. 8 years old!! Charley is Sarah & Tim’s eldest and is a gorgeous, smart wee girl.
The day has dawned wet and miserable, but our time in Edmonton is coming to an end.
After a breakfast at Saratoga, a superbly run family restaurant, serving large portions of wholesome food and topping the fuel tank up with the last cheap diesel, at 98.9cents/litre in Canada, we hit the road.
Bill and Susan have been amazing to accommodate us, total strangers and shown us wonderful hospitality. Bill has boundless energy and capacity to give, in so many ways. Susan, having not long ago had a triple heart bypass with complications, couldn’t do enough for us. Thank you both, you are special human beings. This is by far the greatest treasure we experience in our travels, meeting people and being shown endless kindness. Inspirational.
What we saw of Edmonton impressed me greatly. A modern, energetic city. Founded by the Hudson Bay company in 1795 and dubbed Fort Edmonton. The history goes back approx 5000years though, as it was the territory and hunting grounds for the Blackfoot and Crow Indians. Typical of the time, the white man destroyed the Bison population and with disease and dilution of their numbers the Indians, signed away the rights to their land in treaties with the Government for money, preservation of land for reservations and hunting rights. The government purchases included the fort which opened the area up for development in the 1870’s. But it was the construction of the Alaska highway that saw an influx of Ukrainians and Easter Europeans looking for work, boosting the population. Edmonton was the last settlement for the gold miners and prospectors, heading north to the Yukon and Klondike.
Today, the ‘gold’, is oil and gas.
As we head east the land contour and usage is changing. Rolling land and fertile soil sees the start of arable farming. Some cattle but mainly grain. Grain silos whichever direction you look.
We stopped at Wainwright, a military town like Waiouru, in the middle of the North Island of NZ.. Visiting the Information centre we were told that it’s a great time to be in town as there is a Stampede tonight. That would have been great if the weather was warmer and drier, so we made our way out of town, which resembles Pahiatua (another North Island NZ town), heading for the Alberta border then the Saskatchewan city of Saskatoon.
With a Camp Site sign by the roadside in the little settlement of Edgerton we investigated and found an area that doubles as a patrons viewing are for baseball, Fastball and surrounded by a race track for stock cars. The bonus for us is that we have been able to back the vehicle in under a covered area set aside for spectators to dine. The rain has eased but it’s quite cold. Excellent, because that means a sound sleep.
Deciding not to stop for lunch, it’s time for dinner and an early night.
To date we have covered 7527 miles or if my conversion is correct 12,570k’s.
An aside for my siblings. I noted in yesterday’s DomPost the passing of Indon Tse.
The Tse family were greatly respected greengrocers in Wellington. They opened a shop in our home town of Titahi Bay, in the early 1950’s. Sam, a cousin let me drive the C Type Bedford van when doing home deliveries at the age of 12. Indon, a tall gentleman, was one of I believe eight children that ran the businesses. They were very early immigrants to NZ, from China.