A day out in Regina (Sue's blog) (16th July)
This was to be our day in Regina. We left quite early, around 10.00 a.m. which was good as we are all getting into a nice relaxed rhythm of not waking too early ! Laura drove us all into Regina and we started off our sightseeing tour with a visit to Government House. This is where The Lord Lieutenant lived in the 19th century. The house was built of brick and was the first to have electricity, running water and central heating in Regina. Very nicely laid out as it would have been in 1903. Laura showed us where she had met Prince Charles when he visited last year !
We then went for lunch at a lovely little restaurant on the lake opposite the Legislature building. Sat outside under a sun umbrella as it was very hot. After lunch we drove to the RCMP (Royal Canadian Mounted Police) heritage centre, where we were not so thrilled to find out that over 55's are "seniors", although it did mean we got in for less. We had a guided tour of the grounds (the Heritage centre is in the grounds of the training school for the RCMP). Saw lots of cadets running around carrying their boots which apparently they have to do for the first month of training. There was an interesting museum and Simon got to dress as a Mountie and have his picture taken - something that he had done before when he was 6 and had always wanted to do again !!
After watching a film about the cadets and what they have to do, we went to Laura's friend, Susan, for a quick supper - lovely salmon, new potatoes and salad. Then back to the RCMP for the Sunset Parade. This is held twice a week in the summer and is part ceremonial and part showing off what they do. A short police dog display was followed by a pipe band in kilts, then a display of marching by the cadets and band. Went on a bit and at one point the cadets did look like they might be about to morph into Tiller Girls, but it was quite enjoyable in the warm evening sunshine. It finished with the ceremonial bit - the lowering of the flag and playing of the Last Post. Lots of spectators !
We then drove back via a coffee stop. Thanks to Laura for being an excellent guide and chauffeur.
Got back to find Georgie had arrived. This is Laura's daughter's dog who has come to stay for the summer. Lovely, gentle giant ! More of him later.
STATUS : Specially
for Sarah, look who has come to stay ! This is Georgie, a Sarplaninac Serbian
shepherd dog who has just arrived to stay for the summer. Isn't he lovely ?
He was going to sleep outside in the pen
made especially for the dogs ...... but at the eleventh hour, Laura realised
that the sprinkler system was programmed to come on at 4.00 a.m. and Georgie
might not like that !
A lazy sunny afternoon (17th July)
Our last day by the lake. We have loved it here and will miss it when we are gone. It is peaceful, picturesque and a little world on its own.
Today we got up late again and pottered around the garden. Linda and I went hiking up the local hill in Lebret to the church with the twelve stations of the cross. It was definitely a hill rather than a mountain but steep nevertheless. After reaching the peak and taking the obligatory photographs we descended to the small church down by the lake. It had a very interesting graveyard which we walked around, noting the unusual iron gravestones from around 1910 -12.
After lounging by the pool using the hot tub and the swimming pool, we went for drinks at some of Laura's friends who had a cottage further up the lake. Everyone is so nice and it has been a pleasure to have met them. Hopefully, one or two we will keep in touch with and perhaps entertain them in England should they come over.
We have enjoyed the company of Linda, Laura and Gary, who left yesterday morning on a fishing trip. Thanks to all of them for helping to make this a holiday to remember. We have loved staying in their sumptuous cottage and enjoying their food and wine. All good things must come to an end ...... although we are moving onto the final stage of our travels tomorrow, which will hopefully also be memorable.
And so back to Calgary (18th July)
This morning we had to say our good byes to Laura and Linda. Linda is off home to Vancouver in the west, and we are heading for Toronto in the east. Gary had laid on his private jet to fly us from Regina to Calgary where we will spend the rest of the day before flying tomorrow to Toronto.
Flying by private jet is definitely the way to travel. Bob, one of the two pilots, welcomed us to the hangar and said we could leave whenever convenient. Having boarded, the jet powered up and off we went ..... just us as passengers. Thoroughly enjoyed our first experience of private jet travel and could get used to it !
We are staying overnight at the Delta Airport Hotel which is attached to the airport, so that we can effectively walk to check in tomorrow morning. Very lazy afternoon spent playing e-scrabble with a postive result for yours truly - yag and oi are two of the words which helped me to victory. Visited the hotel's restaurant this evening - steak for me and bison for Sue.
Look forward to Toronto tomorrow.