Spirited Randomness

30 Jun

Recently, Manitoba spent $5 million to change their old slogan — “Friendly Manitoba” — to something more stylish and modern. They came up with “Manitoba. Spirited energy.” From what we heard, people would not have been angry if they had an appreciation for the absurd. Anyway, we interpret the slogan thus:

When you’re on a long trip you often forget the day of the week. The next day was Sunday, and we remembered this only when we were unable to obtain any breakfast because everything was closed. We thought we’d just get to the next town, but were confronted with a strong headwind. So we cooked our leftovers on the side of the highway: red lentils with little pieces of ginger. Anya ate some of the remainders of our granola as well, sans yogurt. Oh, if only we could find an omelette:

That same day we met two westbound cyclists, Peter and Sara. They were very happy about the tailwind, but nevertheless they stopped to chat. They were interested to hear about our project. Peter told us about his interest in natural buildings. He hopes to build his own house one day and is looking into earthbag construction as a potential technique. To learn more, he had built an earthbag structure during his travels in Thailand. On their cycle tour, he planned to see some buildings constructed in this fashion in Alberta, and find out whether they are suitable for a more northern climate.

The demoralizing headwind continued all day, but we kept going. We stopped in Wawanesa, where we found The Schnitzel House, possibly the best schnitzel (and also cheesecake!) outside of Germany. The campground had been flooded last year, so it was still ‘closed’ but we camped there anyway.

Further on, there was more spirited randomness offered up by the province of Manitoba. The town of Holland, for example, is named after a postman who is of English descent but had the last name Holland.

And then there was the 10+ km of surplus train cars stretching on the way from Holland to St Claude. Besides blocking the vicious cross-wind, it made for some fun graffiti viewing.

4 Responses to “Spirited Randomness”

  1. Larry June 30, 2012 at 2:13 pm #

    That is sooo weird. I imagined that you were going to name this posting, Edgy Entropy.

    Thanks for taking me virtually along for the ride. It’s kinda like being the guy on the rear of a tandem in that tough conditions, like headwinds, are not such a personal trauma. One can, more or less, continue one’s manicure.

    The weather you left behind should make you feel better. It’s rainy and cold. A lot of the entertainment is news from your adventure. Please keep it up.

    Hey, I gotta ask. Based on the first photo, you guys been workin’ out?

    • Maria July 2, 2012 at 10:45 am #

      Rainy? Cold? Vancouver?? ;P
      As for the photo: we’ve been preparing for bear country. Gotta be able to defend our food supplies! We’re heading into the Ontario wilderness!

  2. Peter & Sarah June 30, 2012 at 4:55 pm #

    Great to meet a pair of young enthusiastic cyclist and advocates of applied sustainability. Here are a couple of other resources for earthbag building and natural building in general.


    Below is a blog of our travels.

    Safe roads and may the tailwinds be with you!

    • Maria July 5, 2012 at 12:18 pm #

      Woo hoo good to hear from you! Thanks for the links, we were looking for good ones to put in our post. Hope you have an amazing time for the rest of your travels, we will be watching your progress!

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