Saturday, August 3, 2013

Whooping it up in Lethbridge

Well made it in one piece to Lethbridge....and not too tired.  I got a white Ford Fiesta with Siruis radio.  I had a blast singing along to the oldies the whole way here.  It is a good little car to drive - seems Enterprise is going through their ford phase lately.  I don't care.  I am not a car person so as long as it's got four wheels and works I am fine with it. 

I stopped at Maple Creek for lunch.  A family of twelve was being served so the rest of us had to wait forever for our meal - I had a denver sandwich.  It was really good though.  Then off I went in the was beautiful leaving Regina.  The canola fields under the blue sky were breathtaking.  I stopped at Chaplin to visit the interpretive centre and learn more about the "salt" lake.  I always thought it was snow when I was a kid!!  Anyway it was one of those rains where it couldn't make up it's mind what it wanted to do.....on and off, on and off - but beats heavy rain.   I gassed up at Medicine Hat but didn't stop to do a walk in the rain needless to say - I will be there for two nights next week so that's fine.  I stopped at Bow Island to use the loo in their little tourist centre had a cute friendly old guy in it.  I also met this guy...

Pinto McBean!!!  I guess the area must be famous for pinto beans
 On to Lethbridge where I checked into the Days Inn.  It is within walking distance of downtown, is the start point for the walk I wanted to do and I can walk down into the coulees.  Also fairly close to the church and reception hall.  Should I say win, win, win, win and win. 

I headed off for a walk down into the coulees - on the phone to my cousin at the same time.   I didn't go far as I didn't have water with me nor mosquito spray - it was just something to stretch my legs. However I did run into these characters...

They were taking part in a reinactment at Fort Whoop Up the next day. 

 I then walked over to the mall as I had forgotten my comb.  I bought one at Shoppers Drug Mart and I accidentally hit the scanner which was on (she was away price checking something) and I screwed up the system.  What can I say, I have a talent.  I couldn't see any place in the mall that appealed to me to eat at - same old, same old.  So I went to the Penny Cafe where I had half  sandwich and a delicious bowl of veggie soup.  I then headed back to the room and relaxed.

This morning I had a bagel, egg and banana at the complimentary breakfast at my hotel, put on my walking boots and backpack and off I went down into the coulees.  The park trails were a mess in places and the 10km walk had been cancelled.  I learned more about coal mining in the area in a little kiosk and enjoyed the walk,  I then went to Fort Whoop Up which is in the park and it was fantastic.  Well worth the 7 dollar admission fee.  A great 30 minute film followed by displays and then to the fort.  So interesting.  I met the official greeter - a goat named Mary Frances.  She was sitting demurely on a bench.

The one and only Mary Frances

Horse shoes in the blacksmith store.

In the tipi

I wish I would have had time to go on a stagecoach ride!

Reinactment - are any of my horsey friends in this picture.  All horses look the same to me!
  I wandered through the rooms.  These were a bunch of scalliwags - selling booze to the Indians and totally out of control.  I guess you could call it the original party town.  It is very tragic how the native Indians were treated by the European settlers.  There was a party of "soldiers" on horseback - one which I had seen the day before. So neat to see.  I went into a teepee and the Indian sang a lullaby to the children with the kids playing their "maracas".  It was a great visit - an hour and a half flew by and I could have spent longer.  It was small in comparison to Fort Edmonton or Fort William but very well done.  I will add photos when I get home...unless I can get a faster wifi connection.  Don't know if it's that or my netbook but it won't let me upload photos. 

I went to a shop/bakery called the Wooden Shoe and got a sandwich with English crisps.  I resisted temptation as there was LOTS I could have bought from all over...Holland, Germany, UK, etc. 

Off to the wedding next! 

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