I was running a little behind yesterday. I wanted to leave the house at 8:15 to get Zeus and Blondie to the Pet Resort for 9am. Everything, I thought, was packed and ready to go. We left the house around 8:30am, maybe a little after and headed south towards Rocky View. The GPS said it was a 35 minute drive.
We are almost there and the driver wasn’t paying attention and didn’t take the correct cut-off. Now, as opposed to 12 minutes, I am almost back to my original time of 35 minutes to arrive. The GPS wanted me to head north on a new highway (that I accidentally took) and then who knows what. Well, after 5km, the first exit came up and I took it. It took a few seconds for the GPS to recalculate but it finally gave me the new route.
So, to the Pet Resort we arrive and the dogs are going nuts. They know where we are and they are excited about it. That is a good thing. If I had to drag them out of the truck “kicking and screaming”, this might be a sign that they do not like the place but no, they are pulling me.
So, I unload the dogs and they are taken away and I bring in their food and bones. Off I go.
As I leave, I realize that I am just wearing a hoodie and a baseball cage jacket with no winter jacket for the trip to Grande Prairie. Not a good idea. I have to head to the office to pick up the hardware that I am delivering so I stop at the house and get my winter coat – two of them actually, my leather one for wearing to work and my Jeep coat which is the warmest I own – just in case of a vehicle breakdown or something and I am stranded – best to be prepared.
Off I go – first stop is Edmonton.
I am running a bit behind and arrive about 30 minutes later than I expected, so, I was able to make up some time on the trip up. It was uneventful, roads were clear and dry.
I am having lunch with my ex sister-in-law, two nieces, the one nieces boyfriend and their 6 month old daughter and a stranger. My brother was also in attendance. It has been a number of years since I’ve seen him – his hair is now a nice shade of gray, still thick – an issue that I am no longer having – I am shocked that he is there.
We have a great meal together, catching up on the 14 years (or so) since we’ve all seen each other. I get to hold my great niece and she doesn’t even cry. I had a good conversation with my brother – it was good to see everyone again. It has been too long.
I have never been close to my brother. We really don’t know one another that well. He was 11, almost 12 when I was born and he moved out when I was 5 or 6 and only lived with us briefly while I was growing up. Perhaps, since we now live relatively close to one another, we can stay in touch. I am sure I can get my nieces on side with making him keep up his end of the deal.
To top off a great meal and conversation, my brother even picked up the tab for everyone’s lunch. Very nice indeed.
We said our goodbyes and I was told to drive safe and off for the second leg of the trip I go.
The road leading out of Edmonton was not as good as the one coming in. I turn on the 4×4 and get ready for what my GPS tells me will be a 4 hour 25 minute drive. Ugh…
I stop for gas, a shot of 5 Hour Energy and to clean my windows and lights of the road spray and off I go.
For the most part, the drive is a good one. Is is completely dark by about 5:15pm, the sunset seemed to last forever. There were a few spots along the way that were a bit wet and in total, I used an entire jug of washer fluid on the way.
I pull into the hotel in Grande Prairie at just before 8pm. I check in, nice – a suite. Gotta love travelling on the company dime. 🙂
I go out for dinner with one of my sisters friends and her husband – I have never met them, well, I think I have met them, but I was under 10 at the time so I don’t remember. We have good conversation over the meal – nice making new friends. It must be my day because they pick up this tab – two meals paid for in the same day – nice. Thanks for dinner guys.
We leave around 10pm and I head back to my room – rather tired, it has been a long day of travelling. I lay down and am gone just about right away.
So, here it is, 4:25am and I have finished my blog post. I’ve been awake for 35 minutes. Not sure why I am waking up so dang early, but that is ok.
It will be a busy few days and then another long drive back to Calgary on Wednesday. I pick up the dogs on Thursday morning and then life will be back to normal – whatever normal is.