We left the Omak Walmart about 7AM last Saturday and stopped to fill the RV just before the Canadian border. Diesel is on the rise, our first fill was in Gila Bend, Arizona, @ 2.64, then Las Vegas, Nevada @ 2.84, then Ontario, Oregon @ 2.94 and in Oroville, Washington, it was 2.99 per gallon. Not 4 blocks down the road we saw a station that we could fit into @ 2.74, we would have saved $14.75USD 🙁
We were the only ones at the border and it was a piece of cake as they say. We were not asked about food nor alcohol but we were asked if we were the owners of both vehicles, did we have any repairs done to either vehicle while away and were we bringing goods back for someone else. He asked if we were bringing goods back over $1600.00 which we honestly were not. I was quite prepared to hand over the extra bottle of wine I had but he did not ask.
As it was not busy and there was no one behind us in line I asked about the US stamp on Colin’s passport ( the one he got on the way back to the US after seeing his Mom in Winnipeg ) and how would the US know that Colin had left the country. He said that he had no idea at all! So I then asked him about scanning our passports and sharing the info with the US. He said that they do not document that info. The only thing that they are checking from the scan is names of criminals and other names associated with national defense. That is all that is shared with the US. He was very strong but polite in explaining that people like us who go back and forth simply screw up the system. We are creating a lot of work for the border agents as they have to sift through all of our scans in order to “look for important stuff like finding the bad guys”. There is nothing recorded on those crossing the border individually. So I then asked if we should just pull over and walk across over the US agents and check with them. He said not to bother as they really don’t care about the stamp. If Colin was caught in the US after the 180 days were up then he would be in trouble. The onus is on us to prove that we came back to Canada when we did as they don’t stamp passports. Thanks goodness for Visa receipts, etc.
There is nary a bud in the vineyards. It has been a long cold winter. We have been told by the locals that is was the worst winter in twenty years.
Even the fruit trees have no buds nor blossoms. Often when we get home mid April our trees are just starting to leaf.
We turned into the park but there were no excited doxies on the dash barking with anticipation.
A good deal of fresh snow up on the mountain.
We had some sad moments when we walked inside our home. It was so quiet and empty. We just hugged each other, dried our tears and started to unload the RV. But we kept finding reminders in every little corner.
This was the big pile of dog toys. Our girls were certainly well loved. They had toys in the RV, in the house and outside. We still haven’t found the outside toys yet, they are buried in the shed.
We worked non stop from when we arrived at 11:00AM till almost 8:00PM.
It was the setting sun that alerted us to the time.
Fortunately I had pre planned meals for the next week which made dinner easy. Then it was time for bed in our huge king bed. Usually we each had a girl snuggling us. Another thing to get used to.
We awoke to -5C/23F on Easter Sunday and frost everywhere. I let Colin finish unloading the RV while I stayed inside and continued to put things away. I started doing laundry and even without the girls and their blankets I still did 13 loads with the final two being today. The RV was emptied by the end of Sunday and by the end of yesterday everything had been put away. I of course still have 5.5 months of mail to open and then taxes to do.
We gathered up all of our doggie things from beds to blankets to food bowls to leashes to toys.
The pile is almost as large as what we had gathered on the Isla. Yes we will be bringing three large garbage bags of things back to Mexico to donate to shelters. There is no one here who would take these used things so it is worth the space in the RV to return with it. It is part of the legacy of Carmeh and Caeli. They had nine beds here and more than that in the RV. I guess I wanted them to be comfortable and to have a bed in every corner of the house and yard.
So bit by tiny bit, poco a poco, we are taking small steps forward. A few of our close friends here have come by with hugs and condolences but we have yet to go for a walk. I am not quite ready for that, perhaps in a few days. We have the geese who keep coming up on the lawn from the lake and I keep wanting to shout ” Caeli, birdies!” and she would go flying out the door barking. After four or five times the geese stop coming up and pooing on our patio. So far we have to chase them away ourselves but we aren’t as vocal as Caeli would have been.
Our final Caeli photo. Those who knew her will know that this was her favorite position, she loved to have her belly rubbed.
What else can I tell you? Colin drove the RV over to Kelowna Freightliner yesterday for our annual servicing plus new shocks on the front. They have been leaking for about two years and after almost 17 years and all those rough Mexican roads, not to mention the old Isla road, it is time. In all the years we have owned this RV the brakes are still good and the only thing we have had to do with the engine was adjust the valves last year. Owning a diesel is a good thing. By taking the RV over to Freightliner we are able to leave our Mercedes and Lexus in the RV storage site. We will make the switch from the HHR to them later this week. We spoke to Mommio yesterday and she seems weaker to us. They don’t put her hearing aides in so it impossible to have a conversation other then to shout that we love her. Half the time she doesn’t know it is Colin calling. Even the charge nurse can’t tell us if she is improving, holding her own or getting worse. Such a very sad situation.
I had my first bath in almost 6 months but it wasn’t quite as nice as I didn’t have little Carmeh putting her paws up on the edge of the tub to check on me. Still I did enjoy the hot soak with a glass of wine. Colin cleaned the house today ( lucky me ) while I worked on my business to do’s. My big excitement was when I went to put all my spices away, I found a small cockroach among them. You bet I screamed and Colin came to my rescue.
We drove a mere 138 miles on our last day from Omak back home. However from the day we left here on October 29th to our return we drove a total of 5,449.5 miles. We bought our RV new in the US and imported it into Canada all those many years ago but the speedometer is miles not kilometers. That dear readers, is the que pasa of it all.
Our beautiful darling Carmeh on her last morning. She suffered so much through her 14 years. We can only hope that she is up there somewhere romping with her sister and watching over us.