Saturday, 30 March 2019

Thursday, 28 March 2019

Wednesday, 27 March 2019

Windmill near Burstall


An old windmill I spotted northwest of Burstall, Saskatchewan.  It's still standing straight and tall.


- Michael Truman

Tuesday, 26 March 2019

Scraping the post cupboard once again

Trying to get back on track with some better posts for the blog.

I have been trying to finish up stuff with my recent condo purchase. I had three deliveries on March 16 consisting of a sofa, bedroom furniture, and a washer and dryer. I had a washer and dryer that came with the condo and they probably worked fine. They were old and ugly and I decided to get new ones.

When I purchased the washer and dryer I told the sales guy that I needed stackable units that were going to be installed in an apartment style condo. With the washer and dryer I bought a new vent hose for the dryer and new hoses for the washer. Before leaving the store I asked him again if I had everything I needed for the installation. When Saturday rolled around the delivery guys dropped them off and asked me for the stacking kit. I did not have one and as a result I did not have my washer and dryer installed. After my deliveries were done I drove to the store and found a salesman and politely informed him I was not pleased. My installation was rescheduled. I was asked if I wanted them to send the stacking kit with the installation guys. I said I would take it myself and that way I would be sure that i had everything there. My washer and dryer were set up a week later. I used them last night, very quiet.

My bedroom furniture was fine except that I had to put together the bed frame. That had a wood headboard, and a wood frame. I went to put it together with the help of a friend and we discover that the bolts that came with it were the wrong size. In fact they did not come close to being the right size. We managed to find some bolts at a hardware store that got the job done. At least the sofa delivery was free of any problems.

I had a plumber over to check over some items. Since my unit was a foreclosure everything was "as is" under the terms of the sale. I thought my dishwasher was no good and that my hot water tank needed to be replaced. Both turned out to be fine. The unit has two bathrooms, the innards of one toilet were replaced. Both flush with power to spare. The kitchen sink that I thought was leaking underneath is watertight. I got off relatively cheap with the plumber.

Coffee cups seem to be a hard item to buy. Walmart did not have any decent ones. Neither did some of the usual spots where I thought I would find them. There are a lot of ugly coffee cups out there. I finally found some at a home decor store that are the size I wanted. When I get up in the morning I want a cup that holds a good-sized cup of coffee. Seven dollars a cup is more than I wanted to pay however they look good, hold a good amount of coffee, and have enough weight and heft to them that I could probably pound nails with them so they should outlive me. They also had beer glasses there as well so that got crossed off the list. I need to find some Waterford crystal one of these days so that anyone who may visit will think I have more class than I actually possess.

This weekend I am picking up the mother's car on Saturday, driving it into the city to get a switch replaced at the dealer, then driving it back, then going home. That is a little over an hour of driving each way. That should take up my Saturday. So once I free up some time I should have some better posts on this blog. That is the problem, finding the time to get out and about after all of the little things get squared away.


Abandoned Alberta

Two slightly different abandoned vehicle views.



Saturday, 23 March 2019

Barn with Three Cupolas


I saw this classic old barn just south of Weyburn, Saskatchewan on my way to Alkabo, North Dakota.  Looks like the cupolas had been recently painted.



If you look closely, the centre and rear lightning rods still have their blue glass balls.  Chances are, at some time the front lightning rod was struck by lightning and blew the glass ball to pieces.

- Michael Truman

Friday, 22 March 2019

On the road . . .

Not on a road trip. Wish I was on this highway. Instead I am off to pick up stuff from my former residence and move it up to my new place.

This stretch of road is in Jasper National Park.


Abandoned Alberta


Thursday, 21 March 2019

They're Multiplying


Sighted near Portal, North Dakota. Above, the proud new parents.

Below, their newborn calf frolicking in the fresh snow amongst the sunflowers.


A moose hanging out in the east slough.


A little imagination really does go a long way. It especially brightens up an otherwise gloomy day.

In my travels around the area I found it interesting that to get to the East Portal Cemetery in North Dakota one needs to cross the border from North Dakota into Saskatchewan, travel east and then literally step across the Canadian/American border into North Dakota and into the cemetery. This is wide open prairie . . . protected only by a barbed-wire fence.

- Michael Truman

Wednesday, 20 March 2019

The White Kitty...


I had stopped in Carmangay, Alberta to get a few shots of the Carmangay School sign.  Behind the sign and white picket fence was a white kitty taking in the shade on what was becoming a very hot summer day.



The kitty was a little shy . . . if you look close, you'll see he/she has one green eye and one blue eye.  I'm sure that's a sign of good luck!


A few minutes later I was driving through town when I noticed an "open" sign in the window of the old hotel restaurant so I decided to stop in for a bite.  I was greeted in perfect English by a ten year old Asian boy who, as it turned out, had just moved here from Singapore a few years before with his mom, older sister and grandpa. From Singapore to Carmangay . . . "culture shock" is an understatement at best.  That said, I think kids handle this sort of thing far better than adults.

As the meal was prepared I talked to the young boy a little. He told me he wanted to become a doctor so he could help people. Kids are so sincere. And I sincerely do hope his dream comes true.     

While we were chatting I couldn't help thinking, "How did he learn to speak English so well and so quickly?" Neither his mom nor grandpa could speak the language and his sister struggled with it so I had to ask.  With obvious confidence he replied, "From an app."

- Michael Truman

Tuesday, 19 March 2019

Padstow School 1928 - 1948

Stumbled across this heavily overgrown former one room schoolhouse. I did manage to trudge through the snow to get a peek inside. Nothing to really see inside and old buildings can be unsafe so I did not walk in.


Difficult to get a decent photo with the bright sunlight and growth around the school.




There is a barbed wire fence that runs close alongside the school. This is the best look I could get from this side.


Monday, 18 March 2019

Thank you Brig!

Brig from brighidsplace.blogspot.com sent me an elevator picture and it is not even my birthday!

From what I can tell this one is in Oregon. 

The joy of moving

I am not really moving in so much as I am trying to get a place set up. I had three separate deliveries to my condo last Saturday. One delivery was a couch. One was bedroom furniture, a table, and a mattress. I have to put together the bed frame. The last delivery was a washer and dryer. I have an apartment style condo with space for a stacking washer and dryer.

When I bought the washer and dryer I specifically asked what I needed and arranged for installation. I bought the hoses and new dryer vent hose. When they showed up to install it I was asked for the stacking kit. I did not have a stacking kit because I was not told I needed one. They told me it could not be installed without a stacking kit. I let them drop it off and drove to the appliance store and informed them I was not pleased that they neglected to tell me I needed a stacking kit. I could not find my original sales guy, the guy I did corner started to tell me they were sorry for the inconvenience. I politely told him I was not interested in an apology, just fix the situation. I bought a stacking kit and next Friday they will be coming to complete the install. 

After that I went back to my new home and set up the bed and spent the first night in my new place. The builiding is quieter than a morgue which is nice. I have not had my own space for years. It will take a little getting used to things.

Ladies and gentleman! Boys and girls! Children of all ages! I give you . . .

Best I can do at the moment. I have been busy with other matters.


Sunday, 17 March 2019

Some places just disappear over time

All that is left of Artland, Saskatchewan is a marker.


The railway still runs close by this spot. A train passed by while I was trudging up to the marker. Some other curious type had visited this spot before me, those are not my tootprints in the snow.


The marker reads:


Artland had its beginning in 1908, with the building of Grand Trunk Pacific Railway. The hamlet grew quickly to a population of 67 in 1921. Having a variety of businesses, Artland was a hub of activity with good sports facilities for its time. In 1969, the general store in Artland closed, marking the end of an era. Although the hamlet is gone. The Artland community spirit still holds. We leave this tribute to Artland so future generations will remember and be proud of their roots.

     Among the rolling hills of sand
     behold the Town of Artland stands

     One lumber yard, a general store
     Three dwelling houses, maybe four

     A patch of peas, a row of taters 
     A pump house and two elevators

     Six school kids, three ruffled grouse 
     A depot and a section house

     The man who owns the general store
     Some people, maybe a half a score

     Earth has many a noble city. . . 
     At midnight Artland looks quite pretty

     I go there when I've grain to sell
     Till then dear Artland, fare the well

Erected 1993

Thanks to the people of The Artland Community, past and present for their help in this project.

"Gathering, preserving and sharing the history and folklore of Saskatchewan."

Saturday, 16 March 2019

Kingman, Alberta elevator

The Kingman, Alberta grain elevator that is not in Kingman, Alberta. It sits on a farm some miles from Kingman. You can still make out "Kingman" on the side of the elevator.



Friday, 15 March 2019

On the Road


When I'm out on a road trip I like to stop every now and then for a "road picture."  Looking back at them often carries a distinct memory and brings to mind everything from, "That was a beautiful day!" to "What on earth was I doing out there in the middle of nowhere in -30°C..." and everything in between. This post is a small collection of these pictures, one for each month of the year. 

Above is the road that leads to Comrey, Alberta . . . big prairie sky. The Sweet Grass Hills of Montana can be seen on the distant horizon. This place gives a whole new meaning to the word "isolated."

Below . . . the day before Valentine's day and south of Elkwater, Alberta. This road leads to the Wildhorse border crossing and ends in Havre, Montana. There are no services for a stretch of about one hundred miles and no dependable cell service.


Down the hill into Writing-On-Stone Park in south-central Alberta. The park has one of the most significant collections of historical rock art in North America. Well worth a visit if you enjoy a trip into the past.


Not far from Burstall, Saskatchewan but just across the border into Alberta. The small white cross marks the location of the tiny but not forgotten Wolfer Family Cemetery where three children of pioneers are buried. 


A winding country road through the Many Islands Grazing Pasture...about ten miles south of Schuler, Alberta.  Lots of pronghorns live in this area.  I remember our gracious host telling me how much he enjoyed his last trip through the area and how seeing yet another pronghorn at the crest of each and every hill just made his day!  (Keep your foot close to the brake pedal.)  Hi BW!


After a scenic drive on the back roads through the Cypress Hills I arrived at Fort Walsh, Saskatchewan. On my way home I saw these strikingly simple ranch gates.  It was the day before Canada Day and was glad to have air conditioning in the car because it was a real cooker by mid-day . . . about 38°C.


A road that seemingly goes on forever...just east of Fox Valley, Saskatchewan.  I grew up on the prairies so this one "feels like home." Oncoming traffic on these isolated back roads is quite an event. Stop and say "hello."


Along Eagle Butte Road in southeastern Alberta.  Gus the guardian donkey lives a mile or so northwards and Saint Margaret's Church is just a mile or so to the south.  The sky looks threatening but it was t-shirt weather. The crop to the right hand side of the photo is the same field as in my post "Early One Morning in the Cypress Hills" a few days ago, only this photo was taken about 5:30 in the afternoon. A few hours makes a huge difference.


Somewhat south of Cadillac, Saskatchewan.  Love the big white barn. The chalk-coloured area to the lower-right is a dry alkaline slough.  I was staying in Shaunavon for the night and was looking forward to a supper of wild boar ravioli accompanied by French beer . . . Kronenburg 1664 Blanc, no less. A much appreciated meal in southern Saskatchewan.


A lone tree along a trail that leads to Torquay, Saskatchewan. This is the same corner of the province where I grew up and was largely settled by Norwegians. Lots of beautiful old Lutheran churches in the area.


One of many rugged buttes along Mission Road in northern Montana. The landscape here is captivating as well as somewhat magical...like visiting a place where time is standing still.  It's easy to spend a day just driving around looking at the ever-changing landscape. Here, you'll have better luck with smoke signals than with a cell phone.


Straight north of Luseland, Saskatchewan is the historical Holy Rosary Catholic Church.  The church can be seen for several miles in the distance; a large shrine and cemetery are also on the grounds. This photo was taken late in the afternoon just before the sun went down.


A year goes by so quickly.

- Michael Truman

Thursday, 14 March 2019

Porter Lake School 1928 - 1952

Stopped by here on March 10, 2019. I really have to come back in the summer for a closer look. I was going to walk up to the school however the snow as up to my knees. There really is not much around it except for some farms. It is near Edgerton, Alberta.




Wednesday, 13 March 2019

Butze Elevator

Near Chauvin, Alberta. I have taken photos of this one on a rainy summer day. Some things you just have to see again in winter.