You know those things you do in life that to anyone else but you, just doesn’t make a single iota of sense? You know those avocations; when the driving passion to play lawn bowls is just too much to bear, you simply had to convert your backyard into that beautifully manicured pitch of grass & cancel your job at Krispy Creme Donuts post haste so you had the time to roll your balls around it. Maybe the husband or wife was the only thing standing between you and your workout regiment to finally capture that gold medal from the Extreme Ironing World Championships. At the end of the day, the only person it needs to make sense with, is guess who… YOU! For my girlfriend and myself, that thing is snowboarding.
Before getting into about how my very first season at Big White is shaping up- (believe me, this mountain is sick, and the snow is comparable to Japanese powder… Numero Uno for anyone which that statement doesn’t make any sense)- I feel like spinning a multiple-part spell to how my girl and I ended up choosing Kelowna as our new home. If you don’t wanna hear about it, then you don’t have to read it. If you do, well read on…
After finishing up a successful Winter in Fernie BC, we had long decided we would follow up with the following southern hemisphere Winter in South America, Argentina particularly. After driving to Winnipeg, we traded our ‘car’ which by this stage, after driving it off a cliff on the first day of our brand new job earlier in the year in the Rockies, resembled some mangled instrument that had gone 12 full rounds with Truck-o-saurus, with Jessica Simpson standing in as coach. We thought with all our gear, snowboards, tenting, portable hotplate, djembe drum and everything else we thought indispensable, a van would suit us nicely. The plan is as such: Get out of BC, head east, out to Toronto, through the States over to New York, all the way down the coast to Savannah, then over to meet up with my bro who was, for some reason that still isn’t really a reason, lived in Atlanta. Then we would fly out to Peru, hop on another plane to Buenos Aires, load onto a bus to drive us the 28 hours in coach to our destination in Argentina, which because of the Cheapest season pass in Argentina price tag, led us to La Hoya ski resort, in Patagonia-Argentina.
The long and short of our break out east from BC is as follows: Cross the Canada-US border, get searched by border control with a story that went something like, “yes I am an Australian, she is a Canadian, we met in Japan, we are driving a van that the sniffer dog hinted at allegedly has trace elements of weed, we both don’t intend of working for the next 8 months, and we have enough gear to supply a successful militia group in the heart of “Ameeerica” for the rest of our days. I mean seriously, what in any of that sounds shady???
After a lot of screaming I am not a terrorist with my t-shirt pulled over my head running around in circles like an aeroplane, they let us on our merry way. Not in the country more than 12 hours, highway patrol cops see a red flag, which happens to be our Canadian plates, and must have been feeling short changed that Donut King had closed for the day. They pull us over and proceed to berate us and treat us each like criminals for the following hour. Our first foray ‘short cut’ through the northern states was meant to save us 8 hours to get to Toronto. In short, it didn’t. After sharing our increasingly illegitimate-sounding storyline, they got the dog over our newly acquired van once more after ‘reordering’ our mobile-house, and finally set us free. Getting out of the US that evening felt liberating, and we had only taken a detour into their prized real estate for 20 hours. Our crossing back onto the Canadian roadways could not have been more black and white, with the border agent barely batting an eyelid to our presence. Very refreshing. We were now not convinced if an extended road trip through 11 of the continental 48 would bear all the tasty fruits we had previously anticipated.
Next instalment takes us deep into the States, smack bang in the height of Summer, with no air conditioning in our Van (henceforth dubbed The Vanborhini) and eventually we get down to the Andes mountains in Argentina. Tune in, or don’t. I won’t know either way. Until then, thanks for stumbling, and inadvertently reading this post.