Thread: Redhorse cafe
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Old 03-11-2011, 02:50 PM   #33881
yaahl
Sg̱aaga g̱uu hla.
 
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Morning folks:

GB, I once was driving back from the Yukon after visiting my folks and my mom asked me if I would help an older gentleman by giving him a ride to Ontario for him to see his daughter. I said sure as long as he would be willing to drive some of the way. It was just after Christmas so the roads were snowy and icy. Once we got going he was adamant that he couldn't drive because of the roads (fair enough I thought, I was going to have to drive myself anyway with or without him).

He seemed nice at the beginning of the trip and by the time we hit northern BC he decided to start calling out every and I mean every sign visible from the road. We had done about 200 miles by then and still had about 3000 to go... then he started with the radio ADD which he had a hard time understanding in the mountains you didn't get much radio so lots of squelching between changes...

Then he started with the questions, are we there yet? As in are we going to stop for gas, I need to pee. I asked him if he realized that on the AlCan there weren't many gas stations open in the winter? He said he'd never driven down south, he always flew. Anyway, turned out he didn't want to fly this time because he had some probs with peeing and was uncomfortable trying to walk to the toilet on a plane... really? So being in the middle of the mountains on a highway in January and driving for 8 days is better how? Now anyone who has ever driven the AlCan in BC knows that the province is stingy with toilet facilities along the way and travellers have to depend on gas stations etc being open or pulling over and heading for the bushes (prob with that in the winter is the snow can be over 5-6 ft deep along the road allowance). Knowing that he had some medical probs before I agreed to take would have been nice - I could have maybe said no or brought along a chem toilet for him. As it turned out we had to stop about every 20 miles for the poor man to pee and that meant getting out in minus 40c and putting chains on so I could get back on the highway from the pit stops. Instead of it taking a day to get to Fort Nelson, we took 2 days and another 2 more to get to Alberta. The irony was that this was the first time in all the years I had driven the highway that the road conditions were great and I could have made Alberta in about 20 hours driving straight through. So four days now of every sign being read, pit stops every 20 miles and radio ADD... oh, and he was a chewer so he spit up in his bucket which he kept on his lap...he also blew his nose into his hands and wiped them on his pants...didn't want to waste a hanky...that part has forever burned the image into my brain.

So 5 provinces and 11 days later as we are heading over the top of Lake Superior in Ontario I'm seriously considering shooting myself - or worse maybe him... lots of trees up there.. might not have found me until spring... at least we now have more gas stations and places for his pit stops. I also discovered about Saskatoon, that my passenger didn't like bathing - said he didn't trust the hotel showers, turned out he had been getting home help for that back in the Yukon. I suggested he might want to just do a bird bath if he didn't feel ok about the showers.. he said he never took his clothes off during the winter anyway. That would have been nice to know say... back in Whitehorse...and I was wondering why I ended up lugging his suitcase in each night if he was wearing the same clothes.

So we finally reach where his daughter lives on day 15 - a trip that normally took me about 7-8 days to drive almost doubled with my passenger. You know what he told his daughter? I was a nice girl but I drove too fast. He had figured that the trip would take about 20 days.
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A human being should be able to change a diaper, plan an invasion, butcher a hog, conn a ship, design a building, write a sonnet, balance accounts, build a wall, set a bone, comfort the dying, take orders, give orders, cooperate, act alone, solve equations, analyze a new problem, pitch manure, program a computer, cook a tasty meal, fight efficiently, die gallantly. Specialization is for insects. Robert A. Heinlein

I can see the wheel turning but the Hamster appears to be dead.
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