I have been reviewing my digital photo diary lately and I can hardly believe how many miles we have travelled this year. Actually, I think it is really quite outrageous. According to my estimates, the Big Guy and I have gone around the globe this year......literally. Our itinerary has included Las Vegas, Los Cabos, Los Angeles, London, Beijing, Tokyo, Saigon, Huatulco.......
all of which I really need to blog about before I forget the details.
Now, we have reached our destinations in many and varied ways in the last 12 months. Plane, trains and automobiles were the most common form of transportation. But there has always been one SPECIAL mode of transportation which the Big Guy and I wanted to give a whirl and that was a trip in an 18 wheeler, equipped with sleeper and all. This was our year. We finally bit the bullet and hit the road.
Early in 2012 we set off in the semi truck.......
and drove half way across Canada, visiting all of our customers from here to Winnipeg in less than 14 days.
By the time we made it to Edmonton, I was singing country songs and chatting up truckers on the CB like I'd been driving a big rig all my life. It was fun. It was temporary. I would be home soon.
Then we got the call.
"You guys gotta haul down to Calgary as quick as you can and switch tractors, pronto. We got a load that needs to be in Winnipeg as fast as possible and you're the only ones available. We're counting on you!"
This is about the time that I began to wonder if we would ever make it back.
Canada is an awfully big country, people, and there is NOT a whole lot going on in Saskatchewan and Manitoba besides a few grain elevetators and the occasional road side stand selling milk shakes for the weary traveller who manages to stumble through town.
Things are pretty rough out there on the road. The facilities can be quite basic at times. Fortunately for me, the Parks Board is kind enough to ensure there is always a roll of toilet paper when you need one.
Then of course, there is also the amazing Canadian wildlife you will see when driving across country. When travelling through the Rocky Mountains, we often see Bears and Moose. However, Saskatchewan and Manitoba treated us to something we had never, ever seen before......
BUGS by the BILLIONS!
It was late one night in the middle of nowhere. We had the pedal to the metal and we were cruisin' East in a long convoy of 18 wheelers* when all of a sudden, we were swarmed by so many bugs that visibility dropped to zero. It was like driving in a blinding blizzard, except it was all BLACK instead of WHITE! The windshield wipers were useless. Every swish of the blades just smudged the blood and guts across the glass like a scene out of a horror movie. We finally pulled over and tried to clear a small spot on the drivers window using a Tim Horton's take-out bag and some hand sanitizer but it was no use. The splattered corpses were too numerous to eradicate.
*I may be taking some liberties with fact at this juncture in my tale. We were not actually in a convoy. As a matter of fact, we were very much alone at the time. I thought it sounded more romantic to be driving in a pack. Real truckers always drive in convoys, right?
Even stranger, they stank like FISH!
We had to endure the stench of rotted flesh for the next few days, no matter how hard we tried to scrub it away.
We did finally manage to make it home from what will most likely be my first and last road trip in a Big Rig. I was so glad to see my bed again, I could have cried.
Tomorrow I find myself headed out to the airport yet again. You would think that a person would start getting used to travelling long distances once they have to do it on a more regular basis. So why do I dread the fact that I am leaving yet again for another jaunt to the Orient, you wonder? I mean, how many people get to hop on planes, fly around the world and live the jet setter lifestyle?!
I just miss my PEEPS so much when I'm gone!
I'll be back soon. I promise. Keep the coffee on.