A wet and rainy start to June so far, we have walked through two provinces now and June 2nd we make our way towards the MB border. After slugging through the rain yesterday and this morning it has started to break and we are getting some sun now. Crossing the borders is always a treat for the kids as they love taking pictures with their own cameras.
We were thinking of ways to allow the kids to capture moments and memories of the trip and thought about disposable cameras but then what do you do with all of those pictures? And who even develops film anymore? So rather than disposables we got them each a digital camera. Now we can upload all of the photos and delete the ones of feet and fingers…lol. Then of course comes the fun task of the children learning how to use the digital camera. They were all doing great until they decided to delete a few pictures from their cameras. Kallyn deleted all 47 of the pictures that he took—he won’t do that again!
Manitoba was our shortest distance and quickest crossing so far, which leads into the longest leg of the trek through Ontario.
The rain seems to be continuing in Manitoba however it has now started raining at night and is nice during the day which is very helpful. The sun rises in Manitoba have been nothing short of beautiful.
We had to pick up some more supplies when we hit Brandon. We had to see what we could do about the water leak that we have had coming into the motorhome from the front slide. Quick trip to the RV dealer in Brandon and found a solution to the leak for the time being—no more river inside when it rains. It was time to retire some of my shoes and pick up some more. We got all set up at the campsite then Kristie and I went to do some shopping and have a ‘date night’ which was a regular Monday night occurrence at home but this was only our second one so far on the trip. A quick trip to Sportcheck for four new pairs of shoes, then we were off for dinner. Don’t tell the boys that we were able to watch some of the NHL finals.
Had to have a discussion with the kids when I was walking with them, that when they get mad it’s like they have put on a set of blinders and can’t see much going on around them and lose the ability to think logically. I related that to playing hockey with the boys and skating for Dylan so that they understood. It was a proud Dad moment. Now we will see how it works out when they start to argue the next time.
We stopped in Sidney MB for a campsite. The kids were out playing and seen a lady pull in on her bicycle with flags on it. They ran over to her to say hi and ask her where she was going. Turns out she left from Wetaskiwin AB and is heading to Newfoundland on her bike all by herself. They were asking her all kinds of questions and wanting to help her set up her tent, and of course they told her all about what we were doing as well, to which she had a great laugh. She had seen something about us online previously and anyone who made a comment about her being crazy she mentioned this guy who was even crazier and was walking across Canada. Turns out she by happenstance now got to meet that ‘guy’. She came over and we swapped stories and experiences from the road. Since we had to backtrack a little in the morning, she was hoping to see us again and ride along for a while. The next day we headed out with a little later start to the day than usual and weren’t sure if we would see our new friend again in the morning or if she would be gone already. Turns out she was still at the campsite when we went by and shortly after she caught up to us. She rode alongside us as we walked for about four hours and chatted. It was great to connect with such a wonderful person on such an incredible trip all on her own.
We are starting to come into some construction zones now on the highway into Portage La Prairie. Pulled in there for the night and took Mom out for a birthday dinner. Loaded up and headed to our campsite and while Kristie and Mom were driving around looking for the sewer dump station to dump the motorhome they completely missed seeing Aunty Jean and cousin Michelle standing there waving at them. They came out from Winnipeg to visit for the night. After dumping, they came back around and finally noticed them. I was in the back wondering what the commotion was. Found out what was going on and hopped out to give everyone a big hug. They brought birthday cake again so we had to have more cake 😉
I was cleaning some of the dry skin off my feet and pulled on a loose piece which then ripped off a chunk that was attached still. Didn’t hurt much at the time however, after a couple days in my socks it got a little infected which then caused some serious pain every time I stepped on it. As we always do, we found the problem then came up with a solution. We bandaged up my toe and gave it a wrap with some duct tape to my other toe with a little elevation to keep it from touching my shoe as I walked. The bandage allowed it to heal and the duct tape was a beautiful little splint. A few days later it was all healed up and good as new.
We’re having a few issues with the motorhome. The check engine light came on today, so we walked up to a Ford dealership and ended there. We brought the motorhome in and turned out it was just a dead battery. We got all sorted out and fixed up in short order and made it to our interview that we had lined up.
Also had to make a quick trip into Winnipeg to see a lawyer and sign documents for the sale of mom’s house. Afterwards she was a little upset and emotional that she is now as she describes it ‘homeless’. Trying to help her see the bright side, now she can go anywhere and it is a fresh start, probably not something that many 63 year old widows would really look forward to. Mom is very much a person of habit and routine and really likes having things stay inside that comfort zone, which I can appreciate.
As we walked through Winnipeg I remembered a little doughnut place that I went to the last time I was in town, turns out it was only a block off our route through town and looked like we may be making a pit stop until I realized they didn’t open until 10 am and it was only 7:30. Plan ‘B’ there was another shop that was even closer and they opened at 8 am, Perfect! With the coordinates plugged into ‘Crystal’ (the name the kids gave the voice in the GPS on the phone) off we went as we were close and it was still before 8. We parked and I put my feet up for a few minutes. Not thinking too much of it I got there for 8 am and there was already a line-up out the door around the corner and up the stairs (they are located in the basement unit). Must have been at least 20 people in front of me already for doughnuts on a Saturday morning! Who knew. Winnipeg really likes their Oh-doughnuts. After standing around for a half hour we were on our way again with two dozen doughnuts. For the record I want to say that I only ate three!
Continued walking through Winnipeg without any issues. Had one young lady stop me and ask if I was with the motorhome. I said yes and gave her a card, and she made a generous donation as well. Later on that day we received a nice message from her indicating that she was friends with two of my cousins that live in Winnipeg. What a small world we live in—it’s just beautiful!
Wonderful dinner was had with family and friends in Winnipeg at a different style of restaurant (Chaise Cafe & Lounge), it was almost like eating a 5 course meal at home but having it served to you. There was tons of food and it was fantastic as were the company and conversations!
Had a few friends come out from Winnipeg to walk with us which is always nice to catch up and chat while walking. It always makes for some interesting conversations. If you know anyone that would like to join us on our walk along the way please have them email me hello@theLfoundation.ca and we can make it happen.
We crossed over the Latitudinal center of Canada just outside of Winnipeg on our trip which was really neat, not something that I even knew about until we walked up to the sign, so that was a very neat discovery.
With only a few more days until we hit Ontario the scenery and terrain is now starting to change slightly and we are getting back into more dense forests and starting to see the beginning of what will be our view for the next month, ROCKS! Kristie was getting excited and wanted to stop and pick up a few of them to take home for our yard—I had to restrain her and let her know that there will be Many more on our trip, and she may even get tired of seeing rocks after the next month.
Mom wound up with a good cold after Winnipeg, The night before we walked through she went to spend the night and day with Aunty Jean, which was a nice little break for her. Trying to get Mom to lie down and rest so her body could heal was a challenge but we got her to sleep most of a couple days and catch up on some rest. After the third day she was back to her normal self again which was good.
Our new friend Susan the Cyclist was ahead of us and took it upon herself to leave us treasures and inspiration along the road. She wrote notes on the shoulder where there was paint and left notes on treasures that the kids would like. It was just wonderful to walk up and discover some of these things and they usually came at just the right time for me needing a little boost of motivation and encouragement. Thank You Susan!
Our final full day in Manitoba turned out to be like our first, and we hit some fantastic rain today, walking in between the torrential downpours when I could. I asked if Mom or Kristie wanted to walk today but for some reason neither of them were in a big hurry to jump up and go! Oh well little rain never hurt me before (Except when I was still welding, that’s a story for another time 😉
With our sights set on the Ontario border and after a short 10 days of walking through Manitoba, it’s time to take on the longest leg of our journey of 5,716 km—the vast and beautiful province of Ontario. This should take us about a month and a half to accomplish. We stopped at the Manitoba info center and added our next flag on the motorhome then off we went…