Monday 8th June
Today was spent visiting school friends who Donnis has kept in touch with. One visit we had dinner at the famous West Edmonton Mall. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/West_Edmonton_Mall After dinner we took a walk through the centre. Given that it was near 9pm closing time, a Monday night and still a cool time of year, the mall was not overrun with shoppers.
We did see the Waterpark with a wave machine,
an ice skating rink,
a roller coaster park,
giant mini golf, an indoor lake complete with pirate ship
before we left. It is an amazing place. On another day I would like to try the Waterpark. While wandering we saw a group of four Hutterites also wandering.
I understand Hutterites normally do not frequent shopping centres. They try to be more self sufficient. http://www.hutterites.org/ After reading their story I cannot fail to be impressed with their lifestyle and common good community achievements.
We kept Pat awake until midnight again. The house is at least 100 years old with several additions over the years. The original timber floors featuring 2 inch floorboards is still in amazing condition.
Tuesday 9th June
This was another day of visiting family and getting some stone chips repaired in the 4Runner.
Wednesday 10th June
Today we had a look at the main business hub of Edmonton
before collecting Alecia from near the airport then returning to Pat’s house for a family barbecue. Edmonton https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Edmonton is built on the Saskatchewan River and is the Capital of Alberta Province. Much of the real business is now centred in Calgary which is a resource centre for the mining and oil boom. The city is busy with construction and re-construction while the suburbs seem to be wave upon wave of new houses under construction. The freeways and industrial areas are also being reconstructed and expanded. Big money is being spent.
After a family dinner in the cool of the backyard we once again found ourselves saying goodnight to Pat at midnight.
Thank you for your hospitality and organising the family get together Pat. We enjoyed our time with you.
Thursday 11th June
Today we left Edmonton and drove 300 Klms north east to the Land of 1,000 Lakes. Specifically to Cold Lake
which upon coming over a hill and on first viewing looks like the sea. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cold_Lake,_Alberta Alecia has a unit here and the tenant vacated at the end of May. We were here today to inspect the unit, carry out any repairs, replace any missing or worn items and to clean. It was also a nostalgic trip for Donnis as we passed through the town of Bonnyville where she lived with her children for a couple of years.
A big storm rolled in about 8pm. It included lightning, thunder, wind and rain something the area has not seen for more than a year.
Cold Lake is near the Canadian Air Force Air Weapons Range where bombing training takes place regularly. The lake is a popular fishing and boating spot during summer. Winter it is famous for ice fishing when the lake freezes. Boats in the marina are lifted just above the water during winter.
Friday 12th June
After a morning of cleaning and tidying we left Cold Lake after 3pm for the long 650 Klm 7 hour drive to Calgary
Along the way we saw interesting buildings and churches near the towns of Andrew https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Andrew,_Alberta home of the worlds largest duck,
worlds largest Mallard roadside attraction and Mundare https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mundare home of the worlds largesr Ukranian sausage roadside attraction. Both towns have a large Ukranian population. The churches, houses and barns are all traditional Ukranian style.
We had planned to have a Home Made Perogies https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pierogi at a well known local eatery but it was after 6pm and the store was closed.
Saturday 13th June
Today was a rest and recovery day after all the travelling of the last few days. A trip to a huge indoor farmers market was an interesting diversion for lunch. http://www.calgaryfarmersmarket.ca/ Unlike most markets this one is mainly concerned with produce and prepared food.
Sunday 14th June
Another lay day today. I did take a trip to Costco with Josh (a boarder staying with Alecia and Tyler) To buy anything at Costco you must have a membership card. I used Josh card. Considering this was Sunday and very cold outside, Costco is warm and the shoppers were out in droves. I guess they do not have a nice warm sunny day and a beach to go to. Everything in Costco is larger size or sold in bulk. I called our visit a cultural event.
We have plans for the coming week. All going well I expect daily posts may begin again.
Tags: Air Weapons Range, Alberta Province, Andrew Alberta, Bonnyville, Calgary Farmers Market, Cold Lake, Costco, Edmonton, Galaxy World, Hutterites, Mundare Alberta, Perogi, Toyota 4 Runner, Ukranian Orthodox Church, WEM Wave Machine, West Edmonton Mall