We are in Regina, Saskatchewan, and I just downloaded 108 photographs. I can't think of a streamlined way to bring you up to date so I have decided to do a short, greatest hits kind of retelling of the past week or so. Or I may just do the best I can for now and continue later...we'll see how my stamina holds up.
First, you must meet the main character of our story.
We have not given it a cute name - I usually refer to it as "The Vehicle." Chateau seems a tad generous. I have quickly developed a love/hate relationship with The Vehicle. It is kinda cool to wear your house on your back so literally like a turtle but, on some occasions, it is a total pain in the ass to have to drag it around. For example, when one is trying to do things that require more agility, like discreetly videotape suburban neighborhoods or get to a downtown yarn shop. I did manage to drive Le Chateau through downtown Winnipeg three times but I suspect that says more about downtown Winnipeg than my driving skills.
Anyway, our trip revolves around this vehicle, for better or worse. My fears about driving it were mostly unfounded - it isn't that hard to manage but it sure does suck up the gasoline. I can't even admit to its mileage...let's just say that it will take a lifetime of Prius driving, bike riding and subway riding to make up for it. And speaking of karma, I am not sure what the karmic consequences will be for all the insects that have met their untimely end on the front of The Vehicle but I suspect it won't be pretty when the times comes.
Our first stop was Ithaca, NY. We stopped there because we didn't have a lot of time left after picking up The Vehicle. We were only allowed to pick it up in the afternoon and were required (I was grateful for this) to watch a 20 minute video about how to drive it and work all its special parts. Believe me, when the black water indicator reached "Full", I was mighty grateful for the instructional video on how to empty the tank in the proper way. Did I then do it correctly and to a sound track of cheesy jazz music? No, I did not. But I will next time, you can be sure!
So here is lovely Ithaca, to which some of our best homeschooling friends have escaped.
They bought a church (and house and yard).
A second theme of the early days of our trip was visiting all our cool friends who left NYC to live in other places and now talk about how much easier it is to homeschool away from the crazy city with all its neurotic parents and combative Board of Education. Look people, just rent a 25 foot long vehicle and drive across the continent - all your troubles will be washed away. I promise!
Ok, so that was the first day...
No, I won't torture you with so much blow-by-blow...here are a few more pictures, with short captions. I promise!
Our only traffic jam (so far) - just outside of Cleveland.
The lemon meringue pie that the wonderful blogless Janine made for our arrival. I actually didn't have any since I was so full up on the rest of the incredible dinner that she prepared, which included two kinds of homemade paneer (goat and cow milk varieties).
Here is the wonderful, blogless Janine herself.
And here are two of her male animals. Note the look of malice on the ram's face. He was one tough character and not one to turn your back on. He does his job well however - there were plenty of little lambs frolicking in her pastures.
Janine took us to visit two small-scale woolen mills, a dairy farm and The Shoe Box. I think that deserves another post, so I will leave you in New Glarus, WI.
We will get to Saskatchewan...I promise!