Weekend Madness to Picture Butte part 2

5 hours later, we were woken up by the curtain rod crashing down and the blazing sun burning our eyes.

“That’s one way to wake up,” I commented. I got up and looked out the window. What a beautiful day!

View from our room in Picture Butte.

View from our room in Picture Butte.

I didn’t feel very well as this had been the third night in a row with poor sleep, and my immune system was angry. Despite this, I was determined to go for a walk. Ceci made us some cheese-filled tortillas with bean sauce on top for breakfast, and then we headed out into the ridiculously windy day.

I had looked online for things to do, and there was a “Walk on the Wild Side” on the shores of a lake. I thought this would be an excellent place to stretch our legs. The lake was much, much smaller than I imagined, and therefore resulted in a very short walk. It would’ve been even shorter if the powerful wind hadn’t been blowing so fiercely on us. I’m surprised the dogs didn’t blow away.


It’s only slightly ironic now that I’ve read in more detail about the lake, that we walked in direction the led to the quickest dead end. If we had walked the other way, we would have been able to go for longer and probably have seen more. But that’s ok. My throat was really beginning to hurt and my cold ears were giving me a headache. After our brief walk, we picked up some tea (Mexicans don’t drink tea, after all), and headed back to the farm.


The lake at Picture Butte




Me being me, once we got back I decided I wanted to drive around the whole town and see what there was to see. This really took no time at all. I’m telling you: this town was TINY. We did drive by a sugar factory, and we guessed what it was they were piling up outside. Then it was time for me to go back and have a nap and try to get rid of the sickness. The last thing I wanted was to be ill while driving back the next day.


Every time I see this “Alberta Bound” gets stuck in my head.


Sugar beets!


Sugar factory


Guapito made me a cup of tea, and then he and Chuy went to Costco to buy the ingredients for lots of different kinds of tacos. We both hate cooking, so we must exploit every opportunity we can for someone to cook for us. Guapito also decided to buy Eggnog for them, because in the few years they’ve been living in Canada, they had no idea it even existed.

In the evening, we feasted on more tacos, and almost everyone watched soccer on the tv as we waited for two of our friends that we’ve known as a couple for 5 years. When they finally showed up, we all headed off to Lethbridge so that the boys could do what they love to do: play soccer. I’ve never known my husband to score a goal, but apparently he did this game. They tied 6-6, and they were all pleased as punch. I was delighted to have spent the time talking to my friend and interacting with her two young boys.


Guapito plays hard


We then all drove back to the farm and ate more tacos., even though it was past midnight. We probably ate more that weekend than we usually do in a week. It was a delicious time. The whole time we were there I wanted to know where the butte was. According to the town’s website, it was removed!!!!! Why would they remove the reason for the name of the town? It’s like getting rid of the white rock in White Rock (even though apparently that’s not actually why it’s named White Rock… but that’s a story for another day).



Weekend Madness to Picture Butte part 1

Here’s the deal:

6 horses

2 dogs

3 cats

35 chickens

… are our responsibility. Every. Day.

It doesn’t sound like much until you try to get away. So we rarely do. Together, at least. The last two trips taken in this household were done separately. I, to France and England. The husband, to Mexico to visit his family. Finding someone who has the ability, time, and desire to farmsit (not to mention not completely drain our pocketbook, and must be trustworthy) isn’t exactly the easiest task. Oh, and of course it can’t conflict with our other activities, like, you know, work.

This weekend, we managed to do it. My horse instructor had the time, we set a price, she agreed, and off we went.

To Picture Butte.

Google Maps said it would take 13.5 hours to get from the suburbs of Vancouver to that tiny little town.

“Can’t we take just one more day to make it a little more bearable?” I pleaded with my husband.
“No. I have to work a half-day on Friday and I can’t take Monday off either.” He was firm in his decision. Whatever. I didn’t have to drive.

Friday came. I cleaned the house, (there’s nothing worse than coming home to a dirty house) and he went to work. Around noon he came back home. We packed, then packed the dogs, and were able to leave around 2PM. The dogs were excited about the car ride.


First stop: Dairy Queen. Not even 5 minutes on the road and we grabbed some junk to titillate the senses. Blizzards, burgers, and fries! Oh my!

Second stop: Kamloops. 3 hours in, and it’s time for the dogs to stretch their legs and have a bathroom break. Maila apparently missed her potty time at home, and was dying to poop as soon as she got out. But only on the grass. Dirt just would not do. Everyone relieved, we grabbed some more high-calorie snacks and the hubster and I headed back to the car, only to find that Maila was insisting that she had seen enough driving so she could take over for awhile. We told her no, and she acquiesced.

DSC_0435We dropped by the casino in Kamloops and played a few rounds of Black Jack. We had just enough luck to leave without winning or spending a dime.

It was getting dark on our way out a town, so the pups decided to catch some zzz’s.
DSC_0441We stopped for dinner in Revelstoke. The husband in his pyjamas, we went to the 112 restaurant. I felt a tad awkward going in like that, but no one seemed to mind. Sitting in the car for so long and all the junk food made me crave something slightly more healthy, so I ordered a creamy prawn salad. He had steak, and we shared crab-stuffed mushrooms to start. It was all delicious. I was in heaven!

Leaving Revelstoke, I decided to drive for a couple of hours so that he could rest, seeing as he’d be driving until the wee hours of the morning. He snoozed while I battled the ridiculous fog, and of course woke up and demanded to drive once the fog was gone and it was clear skies. We took that moment as a bathroom break for all 4 of us, enjoying the clear, star-filled sky along the side of the mountain highway.

By this time, it was past midnight, and I decided it was pointless to stay awake, so I joined the dogs in the land of sleep until we reached Picture Butte. Instead of getting directions like a normal person, Guapito and his Mexican sidekick talked through the directions all the way from town to the house on the farm. “Why didn’t he just give you an address?” I asked. “Maybe there isn’t one,” he responded.

His friend, Chuy, and Chuy’s wife, Ceci, warmly greeted us at the door. I was shocked they were both up, considering it was 4AM. Since we had been on the road for 13 hours (we lost an hour with the time change), we made it short and sweet, trucked our stuff into the room, and all snuggled into bed for a few hours of sleep.