After a good night sleep, Mitch and Jannica prepared a delicious breakfast and we talked for hours. Both are amazing individuals and you will get to know them more when you listen to our podcast Leaders Talk.
Jannica is partly a Métis which describes descendants from the indigenous First Nations who were married to European settlers, mostly French. Her work can be described as community work and health counseling mostly for First Nations communities.
Mitch’s work is classified. But it has to do with dogs and he spends a lot of time in nature. After being severely injured by a bomb he spent 4 years in a wheelchair unable to walk. Then he fought himself back into life. Two years ago he was still on a walker and now he is way fitter and in much better shape than me.
We went over my tour plan and Mitch gave me some tips regarding the route and what to expect where. They also showed me around on their little farm and Mitch taught me how to make a fool-proof fire that provides warmth even when it rains or is very windy. Mitch also insisted to give me candles and a lighter for my fire kit. He just wanted to make sure that I am safe out there.
Around noon we said good bye and I drove on to give back my rental car.
Around 1pm I was finally in the saddle. It felt very good. I have the feeling that Rosinante also works better when she is carrying a heavy load.
I was turning East onto the Yellowhead highway. It was 34 degrees with a strong headwind blowing. It felt like opening an oven door. The route was all flat and straight with no shadow since there are no trees here. My mouth dried up and I found it hard to keep on going.
I did not make much progress and suffered from the heat quite a bit. I found a truck stop were I had something cool to drink and a salad. My body wanted sugar and salt.
In the evening I reached the beautiful Painted Rock Campground in the middle of nowhere. It felt like an oasis. I was totally exhausted and honestly it would have been hard for me to go on any longer.
Jake and his wife were doing “camping site sitting” here for their kids. They were from Saskatoon and we started talking a little bit. I told them about my fundraising project and a little later, when I was setting up my tent, Jake came by and made a spontaneous donation over 20$. He also invited me for a little walk to their hens and gave me an egg for breakfast. The spontaneous encounters with gentle and caring people amaze me every time anew.
When I crawled into my brand new tent, which is like a palace by the way, I immediately crashed and fell asleep.