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Archive for the ‘Saskatoon’ Category

…the Black Forest, and more wine country!

Our next stop was near Sulzberg on the edge of the Black Forest.

Not too long after setting off, it was time for a pitstop, and hopping off the autobahn we stumbled across a little jewel with the best beer garden ever…IMG_4082

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Sitting amongst the vines with a pretzel and a cappuccino in the sunshine was perfection!

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Today’s campsite promised more than it delivered I’m afraid because after the previous site, this one seems a lot more ordinary.  Don’t get me wrong it is still nice, but it had a lot to live up to after our previous site.

No disabled toilet or bathroom to be found – despite the claims in all the literature. By this time of the day we can’t move on, so we decide to stay only one night and move in the morning.

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We set up our campsite and headed to the local store for some dinner. On our return we followed a sign for another campsite a few kilometres away. What a lovely surprise, and I believe we have found our next campsite.

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Lunch today consisted of a bowl of Garrett’s incredible popcorn –  left over from our trip from Minneapolis – and a cup of tea and mini donuts from Tim Horton’s!  I think I am on the road to finding the 1 stone I lost before the holiday –  I may lose a little weight but it doesn’t stay lost for long!

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Disaster in Minneapolis!  I could cry – spoke too soon about the K-2!  It was handling rather strangely but it wasn’t until we tried to pack it into the 4×4 and it wouldn’t collapse!  Very strange – but then hubby realised that the release for the shock absorber wasn’t working and the shock and pin is bent.

I can’t believe this – again!

After an incredibly long day, hubby now has to head back into the terminal building to report it otherwise they won’t accept our claim.

I am sitting waiting in the underground car park – will keep you posted….

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What an enormous airport.  We would have been lost without our personal guide.

Chair intact!

A quick tram ride across to terminal 3 and only a half hour to wait before we board for our next flight to Minneapolis.

I love this place already – not only patriotic, but we have just found an incredible popcorn shop and couldn’t resist all those cabinets of cheesy goodness.

Snack in hand, we board for the 1 hour flip northwards…

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Flying in over Lake Michigan, into Chicago and the sky is blue with no clouds!  I am as happy as a lark.

Almost at the end of our first leg of the journey….

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Is it just me or do you have an uncontrollable urge to shop for unnecessary paraphernalia the minute you check into an airport for a holiday flight? I know I have everything I need but darn, these minature soaps and toothpaste have such a lure -a little like the need to have an endless assortment of pens, pencils and notebooks – even though you can only use one at a time!
Can one actually have too many mini travel items?

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The story starts with hubby and I eventually deciding that we want to go back to visit our family in Canada for our very late summer holiday. I believe that October is definitely Autumn-but better late than never!
With our pockets much, much lighter, we have booked our tickets and can start planning….

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I know this post is going to be very familiar to those international travellers amongst us, but bear in mind that I have only been a wheelchair user for around 2 years. I have been to many European and South African destinations without any disasters with my cheap (£140), internet purchased wheelchair. So, in September 2008, without a second thought we made for Manchester airport and the long flight and many change overs to visit family in Saskatoon, Canada. Manchester to Heathrow, Heathrow to Calgary and then an 8 hour drive back towards Saskatoon. Sounds simple? Think again! My wheelchair which was loaded at the plane door and should have been safe looked like it had gone a few rounds with an angry Rhinoceros. The back was bent, the wheels crushed and when we opened it bits flew all over the airport car park! The airline customer services we very nice when we reported the damage and they told us to replace the chair and send off the invoices for a refund. Easier said than done when you are about to go half way across a vast country to your next destination. Anyway, we decided to take the chair and have it repaired as best we could in Saskatoon. Considering the damage, the repairers did a great job that allowed me to use it for the duration of the holiday – it just did not open and close any more! Luckily my sister-in-law also has a spare wheelchair and I used this whenever I could in and around the town. The old battered one did however come into its own when we went off track because by then we had nothing to lose and were no longer concerned about damaging it; after all we could not possibly do worse than the airline. 

Canada was a pleasure to get around in a wheelchair and the facilities were very good.  Disabled bays were never used by anyone other than official badge holders – well done Canada!   Some countries can learn a lot from their respect for disabled drivers. 

On a completely different note, the other photo is just a wonderful reminder of many early mornings spent queuing outside Tim Horton’s for fresh coffee and the most amazing selection of doughnuts.  If you are ever in Canada, they should not be missed.

Next episode coming soon….

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