We plan to be in Regina for a third or half the month depending on when the turnaround work dries up and then take a few weeks off before starting another job. Juanita plans on being in Meadow Lake for Sasha's birthday party.
As of the first weekend in May the snow is noticeably lower in the RV park after a couple of days in a row with temperatures above freezing both day and night. I wore a short sleeved shirt to church this morning. Many others were still wearing sweaters. By the afternoon I was right and maybe burned a few calories extra in the first couple of hours. Think win - win.
Back in Meadow Lake (and Edmonton and Meadow Lake)
We arrived back in Meadow Lake on Sunday, May 19th. Here's much of the text from an e-mail I sent a friend on the Tuesday after our arrival back home:
Saturday was my last day at the refinery for this year. There were only three of us left that had been hired for shutdown work. When we finished the valve that had come in that morning with a rush on it, our day was done. We got a ride to the contractor's gate a little after 3.
Juanita had the slides ready to come in so when I got home we brought in the slides and hooked the trailer up to the truck so it was ready to go in the morning. Then I had a shower and checked the lists of stuff that I needed to buy or do. There was nothing that would better in Regina than Edmonton so we just relaxed until it was time to take the car and drive to dinner with friends at The Willows on Wascana.
The five am alarm went off as usual and we got up and drove north to Meadow Lake, stopping in Saskatoon to eat breakfast at Denny’s with friends. The Denny’s is attached to the Flying J truck stop so there was room for me to park the fifth wheel and truck and for Juanita to park the car. The drive was good with no significant wind and only a little rain as we got close to ML. The water is still running across the highway at Radisson, but is down to a couple of inches. Last weekend when Juanita travelled north for Sasha’s birthday there was almost six inches running across the highway.
There was a light, intermittent rain as we opened the gate, set up the fifth wheel trailer and unhooked the truck and removed the hitch. Along about then, Debbie and the kids showed up and we visited and went and looked at the pond and the gold fish most of whom survived the winter. We went into town for supper at Debbie and Ernie’s. I napped in the recliner until it was time to go to the Star Trek movie at 9:25. We detoured on our way there to buy a protein bar at the seven eleven. Movie was strong on action and weak on plot. Enjoyably mindless.
Monday everything in town was closed except the supermarket and the greenhouse so I puttered around the claim, taking stuff out of the truck and dumping the waste tank on the fifth wheel and sorting other stuff. When Juanita came back from town we had lunch and then went back in with a bunch of three gallon jugs. We bought some bleach and went to Debbie’s where I sanitized the jugs and filled them with water. We dumped them all into the water tank we installed but didn’t use before leaving for Nicaragua in 2011 nor since. That gave a level slightly over the outlet.
Juanita started planting her bedding plants and I returned to town and filled all the jugs a second time, plus the 45 gallon bladder in the truck bed. While in town I checked out the water plant and the coin operated water dispenser. 100 gallons for a loonie and twenty five gallons for a quarter. Today I plan to buy a slip tank either 185 or 225 gallons, depending on size. I want one that is light enough when it's empty for Juanita and I to get it on and off the truck.
We now had enough water to turn on the pump, flush the plumbing antifreeze out of the lines and take the water heater off bypass and turn on the power to the water heater for the first time. Today I will crawl back under the house and check for leaks in the plumbing and the pump. The pump had a bit of a puddle of antifreeze under it but no obvious leaks. Overnight should show up anything worth dealing with. If there are problems I want to change it out before heading north to work for the summer.
I am scheduled to start at Surmont 2 June 3rd or 4th. I will get a phone call today with details about when I need to go to the union hall in Edmonton to pick up the dispatch slip. The job is 2 weeks in and 1 week out flying to Ft.Mac and a 45 minute bus ride south to the camp near Anzac.
There is furniture here that Becky wants for their new house. Some of it is heavy. Nick is working north so we will try and coordinate delivery of the furniture so he and I can carry it. Becky is pregnant again so is not supposed to lift anything.
Today I will work towards filling the 450 gallon water tank and securing a means of internet connection and finding carpet for the bedroom and somebody to lay it. And getting furniture ready to load so we can leave in hurry for Edmonton if the call has to be picked up tomorrow. And start assembling a camp bag and check for leaks and ...
Had thought we might get out to Powell River after the Regina job, but that doesn’t seem practical right now. I turned down a May 27th start date at Surmont 2 as it was just too close with what needs to get done here.
I’ll toss this in the outbox and it will send when the computer gets close to a Wi-Fi signal.
It's May 28th today. Since the above we've been busy.
Found a slip tank for water, measured it and bought it and went off to the lumber yard to buy plywood to cover the hitch rails, came back picked up the tank, and hauled a couple of loads of water. The water goes into the slip tank pretty quickly, but out not so much.
We bought carpet and installed it and the baseboard in the bedroom.
We built a platform bed.
We bought a wi-fi hot spot.
Shopped for a new truck locally. Narrowed down to two and then to one. Left Saturday morning with a deal close, but not quite there yet.
Dug out the dining room table and chairs from the sea can (we sure have a bunch of stuff in that 40' sea can that I had forgotten we had) and took them to Edmonton.
Picked up a dispatch slip at the union hall for June 3rd travel and work starting June 4th. Bought a mattress for the foam bed and a sump pump to get the last few inches of water out of the slip tank.
In Edmonton we got to see and stay at Nick and Rebekah's new house and we visited with a number of people at their church that we hadn't seen for quite a while. We also got to shop for trucks in Edmonton. No joy in truck shopping.
On the way home yesterday I bought some cabinet doors to finish off the cupboard in the living room and finalized the deal on our new Dodge dually (2012 Ram 3500). Got back home and stripped the tonneau cover off the old truck and removed the tool box and many bags of other stuff and rushed to town to finalize the paper work and get to the insurance agency before 5 to transfer the license. And we rushed home to eat before rushing back to town for a piano recital by Sonja. We were out of town for Sasha's a few weeks ago. The rushing was hindered somewhat by a burning semi-trailer in the middle of the highway and the consequent three mile detour over gravel roads.
Today I fixed the gate post damaged by SaskPower when they put in power in 2011 and installed the cabinet doors and took a bunch of cardboard to the recyling bin and ordered new hitch rails and dropped off the truck to have a Rhino liner sprayed in and there's still more work that should be done, but realized from an e-mail yesterday that one of the people who follows this blog thought we were still in Regina. This may be the last updating that gets done before I'm in camp in June. Take care out there!
Oh. And the small puddle of anti-freeze? It was from a gauge that was not tightened enough because there was no room for a standard wrench between the gauge case and the pump. I bought a bottom mount gauge and put it in a lot more tightly. No more weeping from the gauge connection. No more puddle.