You guys!!!! The Chupacabra, Fat One, Drama Queen and I have moved. I’m in Edmonton now! And for those asking, Chupacabra is my wife. At the end of July we gave away/sold the majority of our worldly possessions, packed up what little remained into a 4×8 trailer and made the ridiculously long trek across the country from Niagara Falls, Ontario all the way to sunny Edmonton, Alberta. Thats right. We fucking drove to Edmonton. Who the hell does that with young kids and a wife?
Anyway I was originally planning to blog each night along the journey but after driving for 18 hours a day the last thing I wanted to do was sit down and type out the days events. Especially since there was surprisingly very little to recount. My children were shockingly well behaved the whole time. So now that we’re here and settled, I thought it might be a good time to recount the journey for posterity.
So the plan was to leave late in the evening so that we would arrive at our first stop around the dinner hour. So after a prolonged and tear-filled farewell we finally got on the road. An hour later than intended. 20 minutes down the highway the Chupacabra realized she’d left her phone charger. So we returned home, retrieved the damnable charger and departed yet again. Now nearly 2 hours later than intended. Everything was moving along well with the voyage. Fat One and Drama Queen were watching movies and drifting in and out of sleep. Chupacabra and I chatted and slammed energy drink after energy drink. 5 hours in I was on the verge of sleeping at the wheel so we pulled over behind some country market and grabbed a few hours of sleep. Back on the road with another round of energy drinks we plowed ahead. Covering another 3 hours before I again needed to recharge. Another 2 quick hours and we blasted ahead again this time making it all the way to our destination. The modern metropolis of Marathon, Ontario. Marathon is a bustling burrow of approx. 6000. Their motto is “Built on paper, laced with gold”. While we were planning our trip there was only 1 hotel with rooms available. The Marathon Travelodge. With a solid 2 star rating on hotels.com, it lived up to its sterling reputation. 2 Australian gentlemen were checking in as I walked into the lobby and were getting a bit of a hard tome from the elderly woman behind the counter because they didn’t have a Canadian address. Well no shit they don’t have a Canadian address. THEY’RE FROM FUCKING AUSTRALIA!! 30 minutes later I was checked in and instead of the standard key cards that every hotel in the universe gives their guests, I was given an actual key. Like a key, key. So i gathered everybody up and we walked to our wing of the hotel. On the way in I saw several mice scrambling aroun the outside of the building. Inside the building looked like it was about 100 years old and hadn’t seen a new coat of paint in at least 20 years. The carpet was supposed to be red but was almost entirely brownish black. So that was fun. We got to our room and our door looked like it had been previously kicked open as there was a section of plywood on the door where the doorknob was. So I attempted to unlock the door only to find that it wasn;t actually locked in the first place. Are you fucking kidding me? I was ready to go sleep in the truck instead of trusting hanging around this place but the thought of getting 8 solid hours of sleep in an actual bed was too much to resist. So in we went into our tiny room that barely fit the 2 Queen beds. We got settled and had had dinner in the room and got the gruesome twosome bathed and ready for bed. As we lay down with them we realized that the pillows were full of air and about 4 feathers. As soon as you put your head down on them the completely deflated. 8 fitful hours later we got up, showered and made our way to the lobby for our free breakfast. The breakfast actually turned out to be quite decent. We loaded up with bagels and coffee and muffins and made our way back onto the highway.
Now don’t get me wrong, I love Ontario and I will miss it dearly. But holy fuck it takes forever to get out of that goddamn province. And the northwestern part of it is all up and down. Its incredibly frustrating when you’re trying not to use too much gas because your SUV is a pig. On the plus side, the scenery is breathtaking. Beautiful secluded mountain lakes, dense forests and some stunning views of Lake Superior. We ambled on at what felt like a turtle’s pace but eventually we made it out of Ontario and into the cesspool that is Manitoba. I felt dirty just driving through. The plan was originally to get to Brandon by evening but with the ridiculous up and down roads of Ontario we were only going to make it to Winnipeg. So I tasked the Chupacabra with finding us a hotel. Slim pickin’s for places with rooms available. We got a place at the Humphrey Inn and Suites. This was actually a decent hotel and it would have been a fine experience except that downtown Winnipeg IS A MASSIVE CLUSTERFUCK OF ONE WAY STREETS! Every single street was one way. WTF? How do people live like that?
So we spent the night on comfortable beds. Had hot showers and a good breakfast and started the final leg of our trip. Pretty uneventful stuff. As we crossed the border of Alberta I felt a huge sense of relief. As if some massive burden had been taken from my shoulders. Behind us lay all our past problems and worries. Ahead lay opportunity. Opportunity to transform ourselves from what we were to what we want to be. Around 11pm we pulled up to our new home in Edmonton. A combination of exhaustion and relief overtook us and we all slept heavily. We’re now almost a month in and things are starting to come together. I’m working at a job I love and Drama Queen is about to start school. The Chupacabra is discovering her culinary side and Fat One is….well he’s being himself. Things are looking up.