Retirees frequently embrace the “Snowbird” lifestyle of running South for the Winter and enjoying summers at home. Unfortunately Judi & I seem to have the concept backwards, as this is now our 2nd winter in B.C. Last year wasn’t an issue – zero snow, temperatures rarely down to 0C (32F), bulbs sprouting in January and cutting the lawn in February. Well this year is different – suffering snow on the ground for 6 continuous weeks and temperatures of -10C (14F). You would almost think we moved to the East Coast, but NO, this is what we experienced on the West Coast. We simply have to head South!!!
To maintain our medical coverage we must spend at least 5 months every year in British Columbia. With our recent RV’ing excursion, cruises and visits to Dubai and UK we aren’t even close this year, and next year will be just as bad. Therefore, we availed ourselves of the extended absence option, which permits a 2-year absence once every 5 years. Only problem, is returns to BC are limited to 30-days. Therefore, every 30 days we must leave BC, and with the U.S border a mere 20 miles away, it is a great option. We tried to get the entire weekend at our Birch Bay timeshare, but it was only available for the Sunday, so 1 night it was. We left about 10:00, expecting a healthy border queue, but were pleasantly surprised to find only 3 cars ahead of us. Yet again, a very pleasant chap in the booth, and within minutes we were heading down to Bellingham on a rather chilly, but sunny day. Stopped off at Costco to pick up a couple of steaks, bag of salad, wine and of course a couple of Boundary Bay beers, a local Bellingham micro-brewery. After a short drive back up to Birch Bay, we checked in and spent a quiet and relaxing night with an excellent steak and a couple of refreshments. Just what doctor ordered after the hectic schedule of construction, painting and moving in to our new apartment over the past few weeks. We are home now until we depart for our Round the World adventure at the end of March 2015.
After a punishing voyage of 3,500 miles, from coast to coast, in 8 days the end is finally in sight. A mere 70 miles to the Canadian border, this is our easiest drive since departing Plymouth, MA.
After a pleasant evening in Spokane, at much lower altitude than the previous evenings, it was time to commence the final voyage to the West Coast. After over a week of what seemed like constant driving, the end is finally in sight.
By 0830 we were ready to roll, but took a few minutes to meet one of the other Redwood owners in the park. It was a couple from Alaska and their coach was brand new, having just purchased it in Spokane. Told them about our forums and wished them well with their new coach.
Wow! what a start to the day, as I stepped out to walk the dogs about 0730, I saw the sky to the East was ablaze with red emanating from along the horizon. One of the best sunrises since my deep sea days. A very aptly named campground..
The end of this whirlwind cross-country journey is slowly coming into sight, as by this afternoon we finally reach the Pacific Northwest, and the normal dull grey sky and rain. After 2 nights at 5,000 feet we are looking forward to the lower altitude of Spokane and then finally back to sea level the following day. We just aren’t used to this lack of Oxygen!!!