Homeward bound

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every driving day a different color

Thursday  September 14th
On the road and at the hot springs by 10a. It was a glorious hour, just long enough for the body to thoroughly relax and breathe in warm, moist air. I caught the 11:30a ferry to Kootenay Bay and decided to stop at Yasodhara Ashram again. This time I spoke with Samayananda. I had an opportunity to explain what I was doing in more depth, what my impressions had been, what I was thinking… She seemed receptive, but had not really had a chance to review my portfolio, so I left it with her.
The new temple opening would be in June, it could be a possibility. I left feeling hopeful, happy to have made a connection!
I was aiming to make it to Fort Steele Campground, 10 minutes north of Cranbrook. It was one of the few campgrounds that was open all year round. The drive was straight and without stops. RCMP patrolled the highways, making sure no one stopped along the way or ventured off the road. Fire warnings were everywhere. I arrived around 6p, after  stopping at a fresh fruit stand, outside of Creston and at the Superstore in Cranbrook to stock up food for the next week. The plan was to rest for a few days at Fort Steele then slowly start to make my way home.

Friday September 15th         Fort Steele RV park    BC
I’m writing by the light of the early morning sun, coming through the door window. I woke early – 5:27a – it was a cold night, first one in what seems like a long time. The furnace had been on throughout the night. I made some hot chaga tea, put on wool socks, wrapped myself up in my wool shawl and crawled under my wool quilt  – brrrr!!!
Just yesterday and every day before that – no furnace, open windows all night, no wool quilt or shawl or socks – What a difference a day – and 2500 feet elevation makes! Certainly the coldest night so far, I was glad to be staying put for a couple of days. It would give me time to catch up on journal writing. I had access to good internet and cell service, hot showers, lots of food and propane to keep me warm – happy!!

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smoky hi way drive along the #3

Saturday    September 16th
I left Fort Steele around 11a, after filling up with propane. I was making my way home along hi way #3. Once again there were some very smoky areas, and no going off the road, many campgrounds were closed, so I just kept heading east. I was feeling drawn to go and explore around Waterton, their evacuation notice had just been lifted, however the area had been devastated and there were no open campgrounds close by, so I changed my mind and headed north on hiway 22, aiming for Chain Lakes Provincial Park. It seemed like a good place to hang out for a couple of days before arriving back in Calgary.
It was a super busy road, lots of weekend traffic and wind. When I made it to the park, conservation officers were stationed at the entrance making sure no one went into the area. Basically there was no where to stop for the night, save a town – Longview, Okotoks, or Black Diamond – all within an hour of Calgary. So I decided I might as well drive straight home, how bad could the traffic be  late Saturday afternoon?
Turns out there was a football game and I drove smack dab into the middle of traffic on Crowchild trail…backed up from Marda Loop all the way home.
Six months ago that situation would have terrified me, I would have white knuckled it all the way home. Now, it was an inconvenience that I tolerated knowing that there wasn’t anything to do except get through it, weaving in and out of lanes as I needed, truly feeling no nerves! Five months on the road alone, boosted my confidence in my ability to do – well – anything really – seemingly curing me of any anxiety … anxiety I never knew was there until it wasn’t –
I have more to say about that in a later post.

I arrived home sometime after 4p, exhausted, grateful – in a surreal state of mind –

Louise
Okori

All images  ©  Louise Pagé   2017

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