Monday, July 11, 2016

The Raspberry Must Roll

I had been sitting for a couple of days and was starting to feel antsy. Have you ever felt that way? Antsy in your pantsy? Something must be done, but what? You can tell from my expression that something must be done!

Normally I would have a much more pleasant expression on my face, such as one sees in the picture below. My darling and I enjoying the sun at the beach. Don't we look pleased with ourselves? If you were us, you would be too.

Since we live in the Great NorthWet part of the year it is not uncommon to see bears, sometimes many in a day. We have on one memorable occasion seen 9 bears in one day. imagine that if you will. A 9 Bear Day! This young fellow was in the backyard at some friends' house looking for something edible.

The little Raspberry had been languishing under her cover, anxious for any excuse to stretch her legs, and sprint gleefully down the tarmac. Not wanting to deny her the simple joys of her existence, I mounted up and set off for a quick jaunt. Now, you may opine that a largeish fellow like myself on a small and Hibiscus covered scooter would present an interesting picture, and you would be right. My beloved seeing me ride by says " the scooter nearly disappears beneath you, all you see is one guy, and two small wheels rolling hahaha!"  

I rode up the hill from the location of our condo to a new subdivision which is being built out. The usual plan of building had been lots of fairly even size, with houses of similar style. The new model seems to be small lots of unusual dimension, with large houses of every description and little if any aesthetic appeal. They are crammed in, cheek by jowl with unusual and even repugnant design at every turn.

It appears I am reaching a certain age. The age where one looks at "progress" and remarks with conviction "I don't think so"!

The Stawamus Chief stands surveying the top of Howe Sound. At his foot is the highway that leads to Vancouver one hour away. During the summer months this is truly a recreational playground for people who appreciate land, sea or sky and during the winter we endure the rain. The annual rainfall amounts to about 100 inches, or slightly over 8 feet. That'll prune your toes for sure eh!

All too soon our ride was over and Raspberry was ready to go back under her cover until next time. She is a faithful little beast, always ready to carry one to the grocery  store or library. The destination matters not, she is just happy to run.

With herself safely tucked up under tarp, and cover we'll let her have her well deserved rest. Sleep well, little Raspberry and dream your little Raspberry dreams until it's time to run again. Thank you for your faithful service oh thou diminutive beast of burden. Until next time.

Into the condo go I. Like as not, I'll see you soon. Thanks for coming along. Don't forget to subscribe and also visit us at The Adventures of Trippin Sista or Global Impact Ministries 

Sunday, May 15, 2016

A trip to the City

After having relaxed in our little seaside town for a week or so, we made a trip into "The Big Smoke" otherwise known as Vancouver. Our mail address is there for business purposes, and we generally go about once a week when we are in this neck of the woods, and have someone else taking care of the mail when we are on the road. We had one quick stop to make first, and in the lobby there they had a picture of the early logging days.

There are a couple things that make this picture interesting and I shall expound. 1) This is a new set, since the loggers are walking back down the road to camp rather than taking a wagon, or a crummy
(a purpose built crew and equipment transport vehicle). 2) From the angle of the light and the encroaching shadows, you can tell it's a west facing side and it is late afternoon. 3) The loggers are only carrying hand-logging equipment, a falling saw, a bucking saw, wedges and a mallet. 4) The absence of any safety equipment means it's early on. No OSHA rules.

This picture has a lot of interesting aspects and IMHO a lot of artistic merit as well. You may agree, or not according to your own personal preferences.

Then it was off down the highway with it's ever changing vistas towards the city. The breeze was strong enough to raise white caps on the water as we rolled down Howe Sound .

After stopping to visit a friend in West Van, collect the mail and do some banking, we went to a well-beloved sushi joint for lunch. Here my beloved Trippin' Sista sits waiting in anticipation,

The first item to the table was Edamame, Steamed soy beans, lightly salted. One pops the pods open and devours the beans, leaving a pile of husks on the plate as evidence.

Next on the deliciou-meter was mixed Tempura. A couple slices of Sweet Potato, a Green Bean, a slice of Zucchini and one smallish Prawn all lightly dipped in Tempura Batter then deep fried. Yum.

Two spring rolls made an appearance and were quickly consumed. They seem a lot smaller than the last time we ordered them. In fact all the portion sizes were smaller, but the prices had not gone up.

The small dumplings which seem ubiquitous in Asian fare were Gyoza. Instead of 5 you now get 4.

My darling went with the ever popular California Roll. This has Avocado, and Kamaboko which is crab flavored Pollock. It is a staple in every sushi restaurant I have ever visited.

I had a fried Tempura roll, and the Wasabi was still clearing from my sinuses as I moved on to the next item in our order.

The last item was one of their Specialty rolls, the Gold Coast. It was a larger version of the California Roll and was topped with wafer thin slices of Mango then drizzled with a Mango-Mustard sauce.

After lunch we trundled on down to the beach at John Lawson Park. This is a park I first visited 55 years ago when we first moved to West Vancouver, and have many happy memories of picnic dinners there and swimming in the ocean. 

I have given a description of the park in a previous blog post, so won't go into any great deal about the fresh sea air, the well placed benches, the passing parade of marine traffic and the bucolic 
atmosphere relaxing in the sun.

We decided to stick around the city long enough to catch a movie.The movie didn't start until 7:10 pm so we puttered around town doing odds and ends and stopped for dinner before the flick. We tried a place we hadn't been before in North Vancouver. We ordered some Calamari, which were surprisingly tender and served with Jalapeno.

Also on offer this evening was Pulled Pork Yam Fry Poutine. A liberal amount of Pork, Cheese and Gravy came with the Yam Fries. Very filling.

We also had a Meat Lover's Pizza. I am convinced that the chef finished this dish with Chili oil, since it definitely had a kick. We managed to finish barely, and settled in for the movie.

We decided to see The Eye In The Sky, which is a thriller. There was not much action , but it had a very tightly crafted plot, riveting performances and minute by minute timing that will leave you suspended on a razor's edge, until it's conclusion. There isn't enough action to keep younger viewer's interested, nor enough gunplay, explosions or fistfighting. There was also a refreshing and total lack of nudity and no gratuitous use of foul language.

By the time we returned to our little place at the beach it was after 10 pm and within a very short while it was time to retire. Thanks for coming along with us for the ride. We'll look forward to seeing you next time. Remember to visit us at The Adventures of Trippin' Sista . Please like, subscribe and comment. We love to hear your feedback. see you next time. Auf Wiedersehn!

Saturday, April 9, 2016

Where Away Sojourner?

I was stricken. Must be the Trippin' Sista rubbing off on me because "I got to go!" We set off from Happy Squirrel Acres heading south.

Since there are a few areas hereabouts that we have not yet investigated, we set off . I concealed our destination from my beloved on the principle that; everyone enjoys nice surprises, nasty surprises they're not so much in favor of! Before very long we found ourselves at the border.

The Sista said, " I didn't bring the passports!" I know I said, for I had them in my pocket at the time. After exchanging the usual pleasantries with the border agent we were back in the land of the free and the home of the brave! We carried on down the road to Oroville, and drove around looking at the place. We didn't see much of interest, but we did stop long enough to get an ice cream bar, before heading west. So there's that.

My plan was to head along the Loomis-Oroville road, and cross back into Canada at Chopaka, with a possible side trip. Since we had gotten a late start, we needed to keep an eye on the time since this border crossing closes at 5 p.m. 

The country was fairly rugged, since we were in the eastern foothills of the Cascade mountain range, and the hillsides were strewn with Rudbeckia, which many of you know as "Black Eyed Susan".

Looking back towards the Okanogan valley from whence we came, you can see how the landscape evens out toward the valley bottom.

In some areas the hillside was awash in color. I stopped to get this picture because I wanted to share it with you.

These plants have a fairly shallow root system and a lot of people dig them out to take them home because they are so pretty. They will grow in just about every type of soil, even in direct sunlight. They also spread, so fair warning! They will take over your garden, then your lawn if you give them a chance.

I was not the only one who found this particular vista "pixel worthy".  Here the Trippin' Sista is taking a picture as well...of me!

We passed a cordillera of hillside. It really feels like we're in another country. Well, we are! Funnily enough, just the other side of the hill is the true north strong and free (by which I mean Canuckistan.)

We came to the turnoff for the border, but I had a different idea. We turned south down the road and came to the town of Nighthawk This while interesting was not to be the high point on our itinerary.

We continued south while the clock ticked inexorably toward the closing of the country (hahaha) and came to Palmer Lake. I had seen the lake on the map before, but we had never been there. Worth the detour.

Palmer is a fairly large lake with Small and Large Mouth Bass, and Rainbow Trout in the 3 lb. range. We spoke with one fellow who was camped at the Recreation Area, who said the fishing wasn't that good, they only caught 9!!!

A little further down the road was a fairly large herd of deer. These were looking a little shaggy, shedding their winter coats. There were a total of 20 or so loafing around, munching on the new growth and on people's shrubbery.

We hightailed it towards the border, and had a nice chat with the agent minding the crossing. The border is little used and sleepy during the week, and gets more traffic on the weekend with people headed to the lake.

We stopped in Keremeos, then came uphill and turned off at Twin Lakes Rd., then turned onto Willowbrook Rd just before the Dominion Radio Astrophysical Observatory We left them listening for the aliens, and carried on towards Fairview Rd.

We ended up back at home around 6:45 after a very pleasant outing and we're glad you decided to ride along. Don't forget to subscribe to this blog for future updates, and to check out our YouTube  (like, comment and subscribe) channel, and our website We look forward to talking with you and seeing you again soon!

Friday, March 11, 2016

Almost Home

After the tremendous wind yesterday, this morning was dead calm. We pulled out just before 6:30 this a.m.

Rolling westward through Montana we stopped for gas, and to check a couple emails. Here is yet another well stocked Travel Plaza near Missoula.

At another gas stop I made note of a motel that was adjacent. Now, I know most of us look for certain amenities in accommodation. Those that rate fairly highly on our list include King sized beds, fast stable wifi, free breakfast and the like.

This particular establishment is a bit of a "throwback". Firstly, we could start with the name. This is not the Big Sky Motel or the Blue Sky Motel. It is simply the Sky Motel. I am not sure if one is supposed to arrive in their personal aircraft, but I do see that they offer TV ( although the descriptors flat screen or cable are noticeably absent.)

Immediately across the street was some sort of livestock facility. It had a price list for parking $3.00 per cow $5.00 per horse. I am bereft of explanation for this one!

As we roll west the mountains are close to the highway. The colors of the earth are quite noticeable, the green of copper and the red of iron ore. In one instance the iron was so rich, I could smell it inside the car as we passed.

At a  stop for gas in St. Regis I noticed the Trail West Bank. This facility was securely housed in a single wide trailer. This also included drive through banking. If you happen to be moseying down the trail, It's good to know that you can direct your cayuse up to the teller's window, before cantering away.

The gas stop included souvenirs, restaurant, gambling, convenience store and of course gas and diesel.

The Post Office has a large overhang due to the potential for heavy snows in the area. The snow was nonexistent today thankfully.

Where might one expect to find antiques nearby? Why at Place of Antiques of course. We did not visit to find out about the unusual name.

There was a steam powered Case tractor in some sort of jail. I do not know what sort of infraction it committed. I wouldn't be surprised if you oiled it and built a head of steam and it would still plow all day long.

I am including a couple of gratuitous pictures now that we are nearing the end of our journey. Where else but in the Great Northwet would you find directional signs in case of geologic disaster.

There have been a number of people concerned about the economy of late, ad the stability of the banking system. In times of fiscal uncertainty some people feel there is no better place to make sound financial decisions that in a Red Canoe.

The jury is out with me on this one. Perhaps you have an opinion.

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Thursday, March 10, 2016

The Wind Also Blows (Where A River Runs Through It)

Has anyone ever wondered what it looks like toward the north in Casper WY. at ten minutes past six in the a.m.? Wonder no longer dear reader.

The view towards the west as the sky lightens is also as they say, enlightening.

Looking more to the southwest we can see similar coloration. I love taking pictures of sunrises and sunsets since they are so ephemeral in nature. One can marvel, as I often do, at the delicacy of the color palette and the brief joy of creation, since every day and in fact every sunset and sunrise is totally unique.

Without further ado, here is a picture of your intrepid traveling correspondents, ready to roll on and report back.

As the dawn begins to creep over the landscape in earnest, the interplay of light and shadow across the landscape of Wyoming is very appealing (from inside a vehicle at 35 F). Sadly one can never really capture the delicacy that the eye perceives, through the lens of a camera. Perhaps the drama would be more evident with the use of a longer lens?

You will remember from my last missive the Rock Castles a little farther south. It is not too hard to imagine an enemy force storming the battlements.

It was time to top off the tank and we stopped in Kaycee WY. The gas station had a number of mounts lining the walls. All were provided by local sportsmen, although all were not necessarily taken in the immediate area.

This Elk is a magnificent specimen with an imposing rack. The lady at the till opined "we sort of think of ourselves as a Mini-Cabela's". Cabela's is a well known sporting goods store that has trophies similarly displayed, although they usually feature the entire animal.

This cougar looks down upon people planning to use the washroom. It's not everyday you find a guard like this, in a place like that.

Your friend and mine the Trippin' Sista is looking a little nervous in this picture. If I had a Puma above me, I would be nervous too.

This is a Red Stag that was taken in New Zealand. He likewise sports a trophy sized rack. I hope he was good eating.

This is a particularly nasty looking kitty. Bobcat to be exact. The main difference between him and a Lynx is no tufted ears, and I believe Bobcat can grow larger, although the Eurasian Lynx can outweigh him by 20-30 lbs. 

There is another animal outside that was also not taken in this area. They call him Dino, and he looks like he is ready for St. Patrick's Day. You can probably guess which station we stopped at. That's right kids, it was Sinclair! We made sure we were full of top quality Dino-Juice and headed north.

Along the way we saw a lot of Pronghorn Antelope, but it is difficult to get a photograph of them since they move off rapidly when you stop.

This was really about the best we could do, with our equipment. They blend in so well with the prairie due to their coloration, that it is hard to get a good picture.

A blog post from last July introduced you to Lake DeSmet. Here is a picture of that reservoir as we passed this morning. I didn't feel it was advisable to revisit it's shores as the ice was still on the lake. Brrrrr!

We stopped at the Sheridan Rest Area. It is complete with a Visitor Center, Children's Playground and Picnic Shelters.

This signboard tells of the topography, situation and shelter around Sheridan. We had been downtown on a previous trip here so didn't go through this time.

There appears to be someone capturing video across the parking lot. Yeah, it's the Trippin' Sista. It is still not overly warm, you can tell by the way she's bundled up. The wind was blowing and it still hadn't topped 50 F.

Another sign tells of the wildlife which is native to this area. One of Wyoming's singular distinctions is that is has the lowest population of any state at just over 500,000 and the density is slightly less than six people per square mile.

There is a lovely visitor center. It includes a small museum and a information counter with a helpful young lady who passes out brochures.

One of Wyoming's largest exports is coal. The state has vast reserves of coal which is used for power generation. The state is the largest coal-producer in the nation, and has vast reserves as yet untapped. There is a bronze statue memorializing the Coal Miner.

From the deck of the Visitor Center one can look west toward the Bighorn Mountains and the town of Sheridan proper (hidden in the valley).

About 25 miles further on we cross into Montana. The scenery hasn't really changed, but we are heading towards more boreal and mountainous territory. There is also more ground water in evidence as we start to cross watercourses that are not dry. Many of the creeks and rivers we passed so far have been dry.

After fueling up in Billings we stopped at Graycliff  Rest Area on the way west. It is a new Rest Area, in the new style. Each bathroom is discrete, so there are three each men's and women's. The interior walls which are cinder block are also covered in a rubber-like anti graffiti coating. This is the first time I have seen this and I applaud the innovation.

Looking towards the west we can see the Crazy Mountains. We will pass them before the day is out. It is a constant amazement to me that a journey which would have taken three to four days in the Old West takes us about 1/2 an hour at today's speeds.

The timber is starting to get a little taller, and a little more robust as we head west. This lone specimen stands guard over the picnic area.

We reach our destination of Livingston Montana and do a slow cruise through town before checking into our hotel. We pass through Sacajawea Park on the bank of the Yellowstone River.

The wind in Livingston is quite fierce. It has abated a little from earlier this afternoon and currently measures 33 mph./gusting 45 mph. When I went to cover the scooters for the night, the wind did it's best to rip the cover from my hands. I managed to get it tied down sufficiently although it was still billowing.

One of the attendants told me he was actually blown off his porch, although he was a fairly slight young individual.

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There appears to be nothing more for me to say at this point so I will wish you a pleasant good evening.