Clearly its midwinter... We haven't had much of a chance to escape lately and find ourselves spending an absurd amount of time on the couch watching movies. Were it not for hockey games and our battles with the landlord to fix our leak ridden apartment life would be almost boring.
This weekend we decided to escape and head to whistler for a Hey Ocean concert. Jen stumbled upon this local band as soon as we moved to VAN, but we had yet to see them play locally. Whistler seemed like a good excuse to get out of town for the weekend and you should know us well enough to know we aren't going to spring for a slope side hotel while there.
Instead, we thought we'd see what sleeping in the bus is like when it's below freezing. Threw the sleeping bags in the bus, added a small propane heater to our supplies and headed out. Spent our first night driving around icy logging roads in the dark trying to remember the spot of the Secret vw club campsite Our reward for finding it before driving off a cliff was eating grilled cheese and tomato soup by the campfire and seeing how many layers of down jackets Jen can wear at one time. This was a cold night for certain and we finally figured out how to arrange bodies to get three wide (okay 2+karma) wide in a double sleeping bag. Peeked out in the morning to see a layer of fresh snow. Karma could barely wait to get out of the van to play in her gift from the sky.
We spent Saturday night in whistler "stealth camping" in a parking garage and taking karma for walks on the snowy trails that connect hotels to one another in the village. The concert was fabulous and we met a great kiwi couple that we're sure to look up when next we make it to Auckland.
The weather turned overnight and our drive home was a sloppy wet mess. Driving the bus in the snow is no problem, but driving in the rain is another completely different event. This really can't be recreated in words (and probably shouldn't be recreated in real life) but goes a little something like this. We have no windshield wipers (lost those in another interesting rain driving story a few months ago when they decided to slingshot into oncoming traffic and suffered fatal damage). The inside of the bus, especially with wet snowy clothes inside and even moreso after being slept in by 3 relatively warm bodies overnight, is completely coated in fog and usually dripping from the ceiling and every other horizontal surface. We wipe it all down as best as possible and take off. Problem is...a few minutes down the road the fog is back and visibility is gone. Thus begins the process of wiping down the windows or holding the heater up to the window in a makeshift defogger. This becomes more infinitely more difficult as the trip continues because no matter how many dry towels begin the trip...it's assured that none will be dry upon arrival. Our "upgrade" to safari windows is really only a benefit in the summer, as any small amount of rain outside assures a steady stream of water cascading down the dash inside as well. This is rectified by stuffing towels at the base of the window and swapping out as they become saturated with cold rain water, but a wet towel at the base of the window leads us back to fog, which requires more dry towels which continues the painful and never successful cycle. This, by the way, is one of the facets of bus ownership that just isn't quite clear when you decide to buy one.