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July 8th – 100th Meridian

I had a grumpy morning. Some of my stuff was stolen from the campground last night. And some punk messed with my bike during the night. They clearly know nothing about bikes. But that didn’t stop them from loosening my back pannier rack. Luckily they were thwarted by their own incompetence.

And the headwinds! So many days fighting headwinds. And the forecast does not look promising. And the #16 in Manitoba is awful! How is it possible that the 16 in Saskatchewan is better than in Manitoba?!

Ugh. So grumpy. I even missed passing the 100th meridian, that’s how grumpy I was. And I was seriously looking forward to taking a selfie there and listening to some Hip.

But enough of that. Here are some non-grumpy things.

1. I pulled into the campground in Russell, MB a few days ago. There are no showers there and no working toilets. So I noped out of there. But there was a really big bike rusting away there. I guess at one point it was a contender for the world’s largest bike. There was a big plaque next to the bike…but it left me with wayyyy more questions than answers.

Said bicycle – Image courtesy of Greg Andres

2. There is incredible beauty in prairie coulees. And they can be a lot of work to climb out of.

3. Canola! I’m loving cycling past fields and fields of Canola. I’ve missed that smell.

4. Roadside motels in small town, prairies. Have you driven by one and thought, “That looks dodgy”? Well I’ve had the opportunity to stay in three so far. They are as dodgy as you imagined. One had hollow core doors instead of fire-rated doors. Another had a door in the room that accessed an inner hallway, but there were no locks on the door! Also, the hallway had no lights in it. It was totally dark. And the toilet in the third didn’t work. The tank would not fill with water, so I had to use a milk carton to transfer water from the tub into the tank. No other rooms were available…even though I was the only one in the motel. And I didn’t even see an employee there. I just gave my credit card info to someone over the phone and they told me to take room 3…and that the door was unlocked. The phone number was from Calgary. I was nowhere near Calgary. Good times!

Feature Image – A prairie coulee, courtesy of Greg Andres 

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