This time slot of 2:00-3:00 am lined up nicely with our return trip from the coast. Originally we were going to take the last ferry off the island on Saturday, make our way just past Vancouver (BC, Canada) and drive the bulk of the journey on Sunday. This idea seemed practical in theory, but once we saw how busy the island was with tourists we knew getting a hotel room for seven on a Saturday in prime vacation season was going to be a near impossible task. Instead we enjoyed one more night in our house on the island and headed out on the first ferry of the day. Being a Sunday the direct ferry runs later, so to hit the mainland as early as possible we first took the ferry to Swartz Bay (near Victoria, BC) and then a second ferry across to the mainland. Later ferries meant we were still on the road at 2:00 am.
In general we spend A LOT of time on the road…….cabin every weekend May to October…….in a good year 10 trips to the coast (we’d like to do more!). Having things to do in the car is super important. I can’t read in the car as it makes me car sick, and I lose interest in looking at my phone or iPad pretty quickly. Mostly how I pass my time in the car is knitting, stitching and sometimes playing the harmonica. I always have the harmonica along, a blues harp in G. It is a great way to kill a bit of time and the fact I can play by ear amuses my kids (and it really irritated my piano teacher growing up!). So 2:00 am on the highway was a time for a little live music.
The highways were quiet by now. The crazies were all tucked in their little beds. It was the first time in forever that the QEII highway was actually a sane place to drive. No speeders, no police flying by, no accidents. Just quiet empty road…………..well that was until we reached Red Deer.
Nothing says “Red Deer” like a wailing siren and a speeding cop car. Yep, welcome home. We made it less than 5 minutes within the city limits and we were back to howling sirens ALL…….THE……TIME. It boggles the mind how we can drive all the way from the coast, including THROUGH VANCOUVER, and never hear a siren until we hit Red Deer. But Red Deer sure made up for it. Sirens on the edge of town, as we drove through town, and a whole new batch of sirens as we went into our house. I wish I could say this is an isolated event, but it isn’t. This is what it is like living in Red Deer all the time now, not just at 2:00 or 3:00 am.
We pulled up to our house to find our sidewalk covered with tree branches and leaves, the remnants of a hail storm while we were gone. Into the house we went, gave the kids a snack, and tucked them into bed. Just before going to bed our four year old asked “Are we going to the cabin tomorrow?”. What can I say, our kids are travelers.