We woke up this morning in the Rest Area about 7 with the van being pretty dark from the window covers. After a walk around the dog area, which is like a small wooded park on a hill, we head toward Canada at 8.
We get to the customs line at 9. I’ve intentionally chosen a tiny town, Sumas, to cross the border. We are the 6th car in line.

In about 15 minutes we’re at the window. I hand over my Passport. He asks if I have any firearms in the van? Am I going to leave anything I currently have with me in Canada? No to both. The he asks what I’m going to be doing in Canada? I say we’re going to Banff, a friend in Winnipeg, and then my family in Michigan. He say have a good time. I ask if he wants to see the dog papers? He says no.
We’ve now crossed into another world that looks a lot like the one we left except the city names are very British.

I stop at a Circle J Truck Stop to take a $5 shower. That’s a Canadian $5. I give them a US $10. It converts to Canadian $11, so I get a paper $5 back and a $1 coin. It has has about 20 sides, instead of being a circle. And it’s a LOT bigger than the quarter. Remember the fiasco of the US Susan B Anthony dollar coin? Well, the Canadians did it right. The quarter is a little smaller than ours. The $1 is obviously bigger that a quarter and is not a smooth circle. The $2 coin is bigger still and is a smooth circle, but it has a copper center and a zinc or aluminum outer ring. One is definitely not going to confuse the two.
I realize I need Canadian money. I go to a bank and change $150 US for $185 and change Canadian. My exchange ends in 3 cents. I receive a nickel. Canada has no pennies any more. It looked like cents are rounded up or down. Give a penny, get a penny. It all balances and no one has to deal with the damn things.
It’s going to be a driving day. I want to get as close as possible to Salmon Arm. That will put us within distance to reach Glacier National Park by mid-day, the next day.
About an hour later I see a sign for the Bridal Veil Falls. I’ve heard of them before. Probably seen photos. They look familiar on the info board when we park. We take the 15 minute walk to the falls. They are very cool. Sherman like the hike up the hill and being in the humidity from the falls. He sniffs it. Nose in the air.

Sherman takes the high ground…
We have a late brunch at one of the 20 picnic tables near the parking area. A van pulls in near where we’re sitting and a family gets out. Then a couple more kids and another adult. It’s an extended family. Grandparents. 2 children, spouses and grandchildren. In the end there are 6 adults and 8 kids from young teens down to 2. It’s the circus clown car. How do 14 people ride in a normal sized 3 seater van? I watch fascinated. Sherman too, though I think we’re probably fascinated by different sensory info.
We finish and drive on. We’re on the Trans-Canada Highway 1. In a little while the 1 and the 5 split. We stay on TC 1. It becomes a 2 lane road and begins to wind into the mountains. These are 5000-6000 ft mountains. Huge, after being on the coast. The road follows the Fraser River.
There are occasional tiny towns. Hardly a gas station and cafe. Occasionally the string has a larger knot and there is a small cluster of houses. When we approach Lytton it’s obvious this is a small city. A sign says river access and Amelia turns left. Have I mentioned that the day after I got this van I heard a voice tell me “Her name is Amelia.” So, Amelia turns left. At roads end, there is a small park and an overlook to the river. It’s overlooking the conjoining of two rivers. Hence the location for a bigger town! The larger river is filled with silt. The new river is clear. As they meet there are two distinct flows. Within meters (I’m in metric Canada now) you can see them beginning to intertwine. The dance has begun.

I think that this is how it is when any two distinct streams of energy meet and conjoin. Ink in water. Cream in coffee. Warm and cool air or water. Two people meeting to talk, hug or sex. The edges begin the interact and swirl. Then the swirl goes deeper until the whole is in unitary movement.
An hour or so later there is a rest area on the left that overlooks a long narrow lake. Kamloop Lake. It’s actually a large wide canyon in the river. I guess that’s what all lakes are. Never thought that thought before…The view is spectacular. At the far end, barely visible, is the city of Kamloop.

It’s about 4pm and time to start thinking about stopping for the day. I get off and look for free wifi. Starbucks seems to be the easiest landmark, with tables and wifi. So… Kamloop Starbucks. When I’m looking them up on the map I notice. That there are Starbucks Restaurants. Never heard of them before.
I spend probably 30 minutes looking at campgrounds in the area. Too big. So I look further east. I choose one at Harper Lake. It’s about 6km from the Hwy 1. A Forest Service site. So, rustic and small. I get my landmarks and notes together — this includes screens shots of the direction pages and landmarks, plus a dropped pin on the map for the approximate location of Harper Lake Road.
An hour later Sherman, Amelia and I head toward Harper Lake. The first 3km is a maintained dirt road. The next 3km is a NOT maintained dirt road. This part is slow going and a few times I wonder about taking Amelia, a Toyota mini-van on the road. But we find our way past the biggest rocks and holes. We turn a curve and can see the lake. Pristine! A quarter mile further and the camp is on the left. We are the only one’s there! The description of the camp said it was a popular fishing spot. Well, not on this Monday!



I love mirror shots on calm water!
We walk around a bit, make dinner, look and listen to life at and around Harper Lake. There are a few mosquitoes around. I light some incense which helps keep them away. Or sends them off to do squito yoga or meditate.
Same shot as above, but at dusk.
I get the van ready and at dark we get in. I’ve always left the back windows cracked for air and have never had a problem with mosquitos or flies coming in during the night. Well… These mosquitoes have been trained. Or attracted by the lingering incense smells on my clothing… They have found their way in.
There van is full of mosquitoes. I close the back windows. I have a small light on to see and attract them. I’m smacking them against the roof liner. Against my head. Against the back of my hand. Some have blood. My blood. They’re not biting Sherman through his fur… A cleaning job for the morning. This is the 1st time there has been what could qualify as a small swarm. I remember why I don’t like them.