September 20 - October 10, 2012
Ok, I did an outline for this post a few weeks ago, then didn't have time to post it till now (about a month after it happened!) So I'll just post it as is, sorry about the lack of grammar! And some day I'll post some pictures, eventually!
Crossed US Border September 19th, 2012
OMG, the border patrol almost turned me back!
apparently the idea of crusing around with out a plan, for upto 6 months, is not cool to them
fortunately I had my Green Card, which after some deliberation, changed everything
They were pretty cool after that, gave me some pointers about my alien status, etc
I rode South on Highway 97 through Penticton, etc, to Osoyoos border crossing into Washington State
Apparently border patrol is not satisfied or happy to let you just wander the country for 6 months with no actual plans or itinerary. My trip has been totally made up, seat of the pants, so I hated to tell them something, and then do something else, right? That's when I decided that just my Canadian Passport might not be enough. So I mentioned my "green card" otherwise known as a "Resident Alien" card. That makes the agent pause a bit, and he then goes back into the back room... probably for a coffee break, or perhaps a consultation.
A few minutes later, he comes back and describes my status. Apparently I now have status. A few more minutes, and I'm free to leave and continue my trip. Nicely played :)
As I'm now much further south, like in the US now, sun set is much earlier than I've been used to. Time to think about a camp site. I'm now in civilization, so decide against trespassing, er... wild camping. Somewhere around Omak, WA, I see a sign for a State Park.
It turns out to be Conconully State Park, which was a few miles off of Highway 97. It was getting dark, I was tired, and I had the dark shield on my helmet.
Next morning, after sleeping under the stars, I met a nice guy who also owned a KLR-650 like mine, and then later a couple came over who were from Germany. They were driving a new VW Van / Motorhome conversion, which looked really nice. They said they'd shipped it from Germany. Wondering what that would have cost???
From Conconully, it was a quick and easy drive into Wenatchee. As I got closer, the smoke from the wild fires got thicker and thicker. Urg! But by early afternoon (the afternoon of September 20th), I was parked in the garage, safely, and it was time to relax!
Or not. I've been pretty busy since getting here, either helping my Dad with various projects, or working with Sister Brenda and her husband Dimitri. I used to work with Dimitri a few years back, when I was a computer tech, now they've bought up a few smaller local companies, and are growing a telecommunication type business in the area. big stuff is happening, which means there are lots of big boxes to move around.
Then things get interesting.
My family has been helping to build a new orphanage in Belize, (website here http://www.kingschildrenshome.org/ )
My sister Brenda and my step mom are involved in the fund raising, and my Dad plus sister and step mom, and lots of other people have been down to the site many times in the last few years. Apparently things are really kicking off, the money issues have been mostly taken care of, and now its time to do some roof building.
So, the next post I'll pick up in Belize. See you there!