BRAD     |     EMILLIE

Thursday, August 08, 2013

Highway 3

Highway 3 sets off from the town of Hope like a continuously twisting snake as it makes its way up to the Crowsnest Pass.  The first sight of the journey is the pile of rocks that marks the Hope Slide, which is followed by a winding road that circles through the forest of Manning Park.  The towns that are sparsely dotted along the route are counted by passengers eager to get back into the land of radio signals and cellular connections to the world.  First Nation's names are spliced together with their colonial counter parts: Princeton, Keremeos, Osoyoos. 
Our first night was in Osoyoos.  The journey was a settled one, with Uliana happy to sit in the car as long as Nikolai and her Mama sat near by. Nikolai's stomach was eased by a pair of sea sickness bands. Thus we survived the first set of mountain climbs to arrive in a dessert.
Osoyoos is a land of hot dry heat, a large fresh water lake, wine, fruit trees and a plethora of motels to go with it.  It is a mecca for sun seeking tourists, and the chosen location for Brads brother's wedding. 

As it was a second marriage for both Peter and Andrea, they chose to have a small affair, with their children playing key roles in the ceremony.  In the melting heat on a patio at the Nk'mip winery we shared in their special day.

From Osoyoos we continued east to Brad's homeland of Castlegar. It is located in the thick of Doukhobor country. Brad has been introducing Nikolai to his cultural heritage and retelling his Papa's childhood memories.
The weather has been hot, so swimming has been interspliced into our daily sights.  At last Nikolai has seen the Doukhobor museum, the Brilliant Suspension Bridge and his Baba and Deda in their natural environment.  He has had a first hand witness to the importance of growing your own food as a means to a peaceful way of life and the power of community to create magnificent things.

Perhaps the most pertinent lesson was an edict that Brad read to him at the museum. "To this day, Doukhobor children are not allowed to play with guns or other violent toys."  Perhaps now Nikolai won't be so quick to declare "but I believe in guns" when we take them out of his playmobil toy sets.

Tomorrow we head back to the coast on a different route... and when we finally get home I will add some photos to this post.

And here are a few more photos of the fun that we had...
at Peter's wedding,

blueberry picking,
dreaming of a star-studded future,
 castle building,
and examining the promenade.

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