If you haven’t read part one of How The Hunger Games Saved My Marriage, then please go read that before starting this. Otherwise you will be as confused as a democrat at a republican conference.
Also, very very long again. Can’t say I didn’t warn you.
Upon leaving Takhini Hot Springs, we got into the actual town of Whitehorse, Yukon, and our breath was stolen from us. Seriously, it’s fucking windy there. Oh, and really pretty. We stopped at a little truck stop and had an AWESOME waitress from Ontario who was more than helpful on the fastest route out of the area, what pet stores had the flea and tick medication for the puppies, and where we could take our dogs to run so they weren’t so anxious, to which we just didn’t have the time. She basically just sat and chatted with us, wishing us luck on our trip. We left her a great tip, and someday, I hope that she could be my waitress again.
Seriously. Best waitress ever.
We used the leftovers from our breakfast to sneak the dogs the sedatives, to which Luna passed out and Sahara took a twenty minute nap. We drove for the next 400 miles into British Columbia, driving on some of the most beautiful roads I have ever seen in my entire life. At one point, we saw a lake where the mountains reflected perfectly into the lake, making it look like a perfect mirror. So we ruined the perfect mirror lake by letting the dogs run through the water.
When we were driving, we ran into another hot spring. Liard River Hot Springs Provincial Park. It was perfect for us who had been driving for two days. We tied the dogs up to the cables, not caring that they hated being on the cables, and took a dip in the hot spring.
We talked to a guy who told us he would never eat food in restaurants because he’s a raw vegan who doesn’t drink alcohol. I tried to reason with him, saying beer is basically water so he could drink it, but he disagreed.
Seriously, beer hardly counts as alcohol.
We patched the hole in the air mattress with duct tape (note, duct tape is a horrible air mattress sealant). We ate peanut butter and jelly sandwiches for dinner, afraid to eat the chicken salad wraps.
There is something I really learned on this trip.
Chicken salad on bread or tortillas for more than a day is a horrible idea. It tastes funny, it makes everything soggy, and it will even smell funny. And when you’re driving through Canada where their public bathrooms are wooden outhouses where you supply your own toilet paper, you do NOT want the runs. Those were HORRIBLE pit stops.
On the plus side, we were only half way through the Hunger Games books and no arguments… so far. We were seriously disillusioning ourselves into thinking we were the best married couple ever. Insanely long road trip with no fighting? Definitely proves that we’re perfect soul mates. We still had another three days until we got to Minneapolis.
We were awake at around 6 AM, we packed up the car, the dogs, and drove off. Today, we were hoping to get at least 700 miles in. We were determined to get to Alberta this particular day, but failed.
We stopped around 8:30 at night, after 13.5 hours in the car, only stopping to go to the bathroom. We ended up in Prince George, BC. We got there and decided that we needed a real bed to sleep on.
For you see, the military packed up our stuff a week before we left, so we had been sleeping on an air mattress for over a week. We yearned for a soft bed. We wanted a shower. We wanted real food.
When we got into Prince George, we found, quite possibly, the only shady hotel in all of British Columbia. Maybe even all of Canada. I’m trying to figure out how we didn’t get shanked. It’s probably because we were in Canada. Nothing bad happens in Canada.
Right next to our hotel room, about 200 feet away, was a liquor store. We got a case of beer and some junk food, turned on Family Guy, and relaxed. When I went to go take a shower, we found that the shower didn’t work. Luna was hiding under the bed and we didn’t see her until morning. Sahara had her head on the pillow, refusing to get up. Our clothes were sweaty and dirty from sitting in the car, the room was tiny, the beer was warm. The lady at the liquor store told us where the dog park was, even giving us a cheap map of Prince George so we could find it easily.
I really need to talk about the liquor store lady.
She was half Texan, raised in Canada. Overly friendly, recommended us to go to Tim Horton’s for breakfast*, gave us directions to the dog park, then later knocked on our hotel room door to give us air fresheners for our car because she knew we had been driving for two days. I don’t remember her name, but she was wonderful. She was the true definition of Canadian hospitality. Because of that woman, I seriously want to consider living in Canada.
Actually, I noticed every person I’ve met from Canada, including my Newfie friend Donna, are absolute joys to be around. They’re sarcastic, caring, can drink me under the table, and don’t care that I’m not classy. Seriously, more people need to be like Canadians. There would be world peace if everyone was like Canadians.
Back to the story.
The hotel room was awful. The room was tiny, the shower didn’t work, the bed was lumpy and hard, the lights were dim, we could hear the neighbors through the paper thin wall, we were right off a busy street… and because we hadn’t slept in a real bed for over a week and we were exhausted from not getting any sleep over the course of two days, it was the most comfortable bed I have ever slept in.
And for as long as I live, that was probably the best hotel room I’ll ever stay in.
I found out later that my mom was getting kind of mad at me for not calling her, but to my surprise, my phone did not work in Canada after the first three text messages. Something about Sprint not wanting to work with our phones. Thank God that we didn’t break down. We finished the Hunger Games books about two hours outside of Prince George.
The next morning around ten, we checked out of our hotel and went to the dog park for about an hour and a half… but only after stopping at Tim Horton’s. Maybe I’m a fatty (this is probably the case), but those donuts were awesome. Coffee was great too. I don’t understand why Tim horton’s isn’t in the states. Seriously. The dog park was fantastic, everyone there came over and were chatting us up, Luna was so giddy that she was shaking while waiting for us to take off her leash. Sahara laid in the grass with a big, dopey smile on her face. After an hour at the dog park, we were off.
So then we had to talk to break the silence because we were idiots for not downloading more audiobooks. Oh, and if you’re not in a city in Canada, there is no radio. At all. So nothing but complete silence in the car.
This is where the bickering began.
Me: Alex, you should let me drive. You’ve driven the past 1500 miles.
Alex: Nah it’s okay. I don’t mind.
Me: Why won’t you let me drive?
Alex: Because you’ve flipped a car before. And you hit parked shit all the time.
Me: I haven’t hit anything parked in a few months, I’ll be fine.
Alex: I don’t believe you. And you refuse to sleep. How about this, when we get into North Dakota, you can drive.
Me: Why not until North Dakota?
Alex: Because you’re from the fucking Midwest, I figure you know your way around.
We cross the US border around 10 pm, and it’s still two hours until we get to Great Falls, Montana. The US border took our apples, but we were still able to bring Bananas through because we completely forgot we had them.
We smuggled bananas for you, Mom.
We went into the first once through the US Border and while I was going to the bathroom (the first rest stop with running water on this voyage!), fucking NPR started to blast the bathroom.
I was terrified. I thought that someone had turned it on because they were sick and wanted me to die by torture. I was certain that a serial killer was in the bathroom, about to dismember me horribly because my husband was already dead by his hands.
I was going to die at the hands of a Republican. This was the only thing that ran through my mind.
I was terrified that I was going to die at the hands of someone who thinks rich people should get tax breaks. So I screamed, pulling my pants up as I was running out of the bathroom, to see my husband waiting for me.
“Were you afraid of getting shanked too?” Alex asked me, just as freaked out as me.
“Why were Canadian rest stops less creepy?” I said, calming down, realizing that the radio in the bathroom just turned on out of nowhere, probably ghosts.
“Because Canada is nicer than fucking Montana.”
Touché, my love, touché.
This is the end of Part II. The rest of it will be posted later this week. Thoughts or comments?
*Now, if a representative from Tim Horton’s is reading this, please, for the love of God and all that is holy, OPEN A TIM HORTON’S IN LOUISIANA! They were the BEST FUCKING DONUTS! And the coffee was great. And the service at every single Tim Horton’s we went to was amazing. And it was CHEAP.
**Of course, I’m being unfair considering the actual argument involved a lot more cussing and arguing. We both smelled bad, we were ready to be done. Also, I was a lot meaner than I’m letting on, but I can’t remember what I said.
Please comment on what you liked or disliked! Has anyone ever had a weird experience traveling? Did you once fear being murdered by a Republican? Let me know!