Saturday, October 22, 2016

Home On The Range

Welcome to Home Hardware
We are thrilled to know that Big White is welcome at the Home Hardware department store in Cranbrook, British Columbia. Finding a place to quietly settle in for the night as we free-range across Canada, can be unsettling to those of us who live full time in a mobile home. Our ‘rv’ is our abode. Frank converted this 17-passenger HandiDART bus two years ago, and it’s been our primary domain ever since.

We depart the parking lot and cruise west along Highway 3 to our next stop-over.

Today, we are exploring the town of Creston, British Columbia

We pull into the library parking lot and step outside. It’s October 12, and the weather is much warmer here than inside our bus. We don't have central heating, just a small heater and when it's turned on it cloaks us with a blanket of warmth, but the moment you turn it off, the cold clings to you like a thief. 

Millennium Park
Inside the brightly lit building, we ask if there are any large stores that would accommodate our truck and trailer. The librarian explains that there is a graveled parking lot beside the Millennium Park where large transports park regularly. Later that day, we join them.

We get a good sense of this gentle town by strolling its streets, visiting the senior centre, having a meal at a restaurant and speaking to some of the people at the grocery store and on the avenues. At one of the Chinese food eateries, we have a conversation with the owner.

“How long have you lived in Creston?” I say.

“Oh, all my life. But I don’t like,” the man says.

“Why don’t you like it?” Frank says.

“It’s too old. The people are old and no one wants to eat at my restaurant anymore.”

He sets down a large bowl of soup in front of us, two empty bowls, a plate of dumplings and walks away.

Updating an original building
We also have a sense of it being old, by Canadian standards, and pay special attention to the restoration of some of its buildings. The biggest regret we have is that the hub of the town is plowed through by large trucks, leaving behind their ghastly smell of burning diesel, and fast moving cars travelling to and from work in outlying centres sometimes beeping their way through the intersections. With regret, potential visitors find it nearly impossible to pull over on Highway 3. 

The next day, as we wander around the town, we meet two older men sitting at Millennium Park. We approach them and engage in conversation.
Another view of Millennium Park

“Most of the people living in Creston are seniors, these days. That suits us just fine,” the man with the cane says. “We’ve got young families too and like every other town in the world, we’ve got restless trouble-makers.”

“It’s like a retirement community. People move here from as far away as Calgary,” the man in the baseball cap says.

We talk with the gentle souls for another half hour and then set off to explore more of the town.

Along our travels, we consider places to settle down once we are not able to live this ramblers’ lifestyle, and Creston has been added to our list.

View of mountains from street in Creston, BC

Blessed is the spot

1 comment:

  1. I really enjoyed this post, Susan. I got a good feel of the town and the people from your descriptions. I also enjoyed your observations about getting old and the way society and individual people view older people.