Day 1: first contact

We almost left on time. The plan was to hit the road around 2 pm. By 3:30 we were packed up and buckled in and on the road. J had planned his first meeting in Chilliwack before end of day around 5 pm so we were a little pressed for time but we made it. After about 2 minutes on the road we almost had an accident because a van turned out of a parking lot next to us and as he did his driver door swung open and nearly smacked the truck. That would have been a disaster! J is an excellent defensive driver and swerved just in time. Whew!

Then about halfway to the meeting J looked at me in a panic: Did you see seat belts back there? In the cells. I was sure I had but he wasn’t convinced. He was busy making plans in his head about having to get them shipped somewhere along the way, perhaps to the plant in Winnipeg. I was trying to assure him that E has used the belts when she was arresting Pooh Bear. Look, Daddy! Pooh Bear’s a prisoner!

He finally pulled over and looked inside one of the cells and of course, there they were!  Another problem fixed. At this point E started saying: I’m tired of driving.

Oh great. Only 99 hours of driving to go, 99 hours to go, take one down, pass it around…

Then the GPS couldn’t seem to calculate the exact address of J’s meeting so we ended up somewhere near the Department of Defence (we’re looking for the RCMP). The security guy gives us directions, only a block around to the RCMP post garage. We follow his directions, see lots of buildings, RCMP signs, vehicles, even an old ITB vehicle, but nothing that seems to match the address. Drive, turn, call the guy, leave a message, drive some more, turn, back up, U-turn. After 10 minutes and many phone calls the guy finally answers and gives us directions. In the exact opposite direction of where we’d been wandering.

And so J’s first showing with two very nice guys who even turned on a cop car for the girls to see the lights and siren and play with the PA. They had a blast! Unfortunately, as J was showing off the features of the truck, the flashing lights and siren wouldn’t work… hmm… seemed to be a dead battery (the back has its own battery to power those things plus the scene lights and cell lights.) So that didn’t look good. J did a good job explaining why it was so but I could tell he was mad.

He was sure that it was a loose or bad connection in the battery which wouldn’t be fixed except at an ITB plant because it’s secured by tamper-proof fasteners. So J was on the phone calling the plant, calling the repair guy, trying to figure out what to do, planning to make a detour to Coaldale. It was all very frustrating.

Then he decided to check the truck battery since it’s all power supply and connected. And there was a little flipped breaker. Which solved the problem. Another crisis averted!

When we pulled into Kamloops I plugged the name of the hotel into the GPS. When J went to check in, we were at the wrong one. Are you kidding me? There are 2 HoJo’s in Kamloops on the same road.

And the night? Not good. Trucks and cars flying by, E flailing, C snoring… and then some guy in the next room puking his guts out at 3:30 in the morning. Not The Good Night’s Sleep we were hoping for.

And so now it’s Day 2.

  • Miles: 200 (320 km)
  • Meals: Subway dinner (free car toys!)
  • Meltdowns: J – 1/M-0/C-1/E-2

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