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  • Writer's pictureRuth Mcbride

‘Mann Tracht, Un Gott Lacht’

or translating from Yiddish…..

’Man Plans, and God Laughs’

The road of life is definitely unpredictable. Our best laid plans can be upended at a moments notice. What defines us is how we react to the unpredictability of our circumstances. That’s what we were dealing with today!

What a beautiful sunrise we had at The Orchard RV park in Lake Country, B.C.!

Sunrise over the apple orchards at The Orchard RV park, Lake Country.

This morning Richard called BCAA to have them tow our poor Jerry to the Canadian Tire in Kelowna. The tow showed up at 8:39am this morning and away Jerry went!

Loading up Jerry on the tow dolly.

Jerry on the tow truck about to go to Kelowna.

See ya soon Jerry!

As Richard was dealing with the tow truck operator, I decided to have a full workout in Newman. As I was on my cycle trainer bicycle, I received a Facebook Messenger message from a friend and former colleague of mine who lives just up the road in Predator Ridge about 15 minutes from where we are staying in Lake Country. Joe said he had read our blog from yesterday and understood that we were stranded and would come down and bring us to our Sunday brunch, and would also take us to Kelowna to pick up Jerry once he was repaired. Wow! What great news!

Richard called Canadian Tire once they were open at 9am and they told him that they had a cancellation today, so they could look at Jerry the Jeep around 2pm. We were so happy Jerry was going to be looked at today!

We decided to start a load of laundry in Newman and we had our fingers crossed that the washer/dryer would work.

The Splendide 2100 was working like a charm today! Woohoo! We are so happy we were able to get this unit repaired in Cranbrook!

I was able to change our brunch reservation at BLOCK ONE at 50th Parallel Estate Winery to include Joe and his lovely wife Berniece. I texted Joe to let him know and he said he would pick us up at noon. It’s great to have flexible friends and plans!

All ready for brunch!

There was no need for a hat or jacket today as the temperature was a grey, 13C.

A nice festive, welcoming display at BLOCK ONE restaurant.

The winery had some stunning views over Lake Okanagan.

What a modern looking winery! The vines in the background are very colourful.

We had to provide our proof of BC vaccination as well as a piece of ID to prove we were who we were. Just as we were entering the restaurant Canadian Tire called on Richard’s cell phone. We were seated without Richard and we kept waiting and waiting for him before we ordered anything to drink. When Richard finally did arrive for brunch, he didn’t have good news. We definitely needed to order some wine now!

DUNGENESS CRABCAKE BENEDICT!! For Richard, Joe and Berneice.


We of course had to have some wine with our meal, so we paired our brunch with a lovely bottle of 2019 50th Parallel Estate Pinot Gris. The wine was delicious and so was our brunch, despite the news from Canadian Tire.

Jerry has a hole in his engine block! Richard asked Canadian Tire to see what an engine from a similar Jeep Compass would cost and they said they would call around to find out from some local wreckers.

So how do I know Joe? We both worked at Scotiabank Automotive Finance for many years together. Joe was always in either Calgary or Vancouver, and I was in Toronto, but with a National mandate. We were both VP’s at the same time and Joe retired in 2016 and of course I just retired in January 2020. And Ron Porter who I sometimes refer to, was our boss. We sent Ron this picture to let him know how good the wine and food was today!

After lunch Joe drove us around to some car dealers used car lots in Vernon to see what kind of inventory of used cars the dealers had. Right now is the absolute worst time to buy a used vehicle because there are limited numbers of new vehicles available for sale, which is pushing the prices on used vehicles up as well. We were pretty disheartened to see the lack of used vehicles in Vernon, knowing that we would need to pay top dollar to replace our old Jerry, if we wanted to have a tow car for the rest of our trip.

After driving around Vernon, Joe took us to Kalamalka Lake which is one of the 3 lakes in Lake Country, where we are staying. Canadian Tire called Richard and said they had found a used engine for Jerry and the price would be $5,000 plus installation to put a new engine in the car. YIKES!

‘Kal’ beach

A deserted ‘Kal’ beach on a grey, Okanagan day.

Kalamalka Lake is 4 km south of Vernon and is the main drinking water supply for Vernon. The lake is named after the Okanagan First Nation chief who occupied its northern shores. At different times of the year the colour of the lake can range from cyan to indigo, in different parts of the Lake, at the same time. The lake is called ‘Lake of a thousand colours’. The different colour of the water is derived from light scattering, caused by the precipitation of calcium carbonate.

Kalamalka Lake on a day with beautiful colour in the water. I wish we had been able to see the Lake like this!

We also made a quick stop at Kekuli Bay Provincial Park situated 11km south of Vernon. The park is situated on a beautiful bay on the west side of Kalamalka Lake. The name ‘Kekuli‘ is a semi-underground pit house used by the Indigenous People’s of the Okanagan Valley. A hole was dug, making a flat earth floor, then the stones carried up as a low wall. Then poles would be lashed together in a low conical manner, leaving an opening at the top. This would be the entrance to the dwelling by a long notched pole. Over the lashed pole structure, would be laid other poles, then mats and hides and the whole thing covered with earth. The top entrance hole would also serve as means whereby smoke could escape.

A Kekuli house.

Kekuli Bay boat launch. Its too bad it was such a grey day, as the scenery would have been stunning if was a bit brighter!

As we were driving back to Predator Ridge, Joe told us that he and Berneice would not need their car for the rest of the day, or for the next few days and if we wanted to borrow it, we could. Wow! What great friends! Amazing! We’re so lucky our Jerry died here and not in someplace where we didn’t have anyone to help us out!

We dropped Joe and Berniece off at their beautiful home in Predator Ridge and then decided to visit the local IGA in Lake Country to pick up a fresh pizza for dinner. Joe had mentioned there was a very good bakery next to the IGA and as luck would have it, it was still open when we arrived. Home baked goods always make us feel good!

Winfield Bakery. Lake Country used to be known as Winfield before the entire area changed its name to Lake Country.

When we got home, this was the situation! I was researching used vehicles on my Ipad and looking up the ‘Good Sam Towing Guide‘ on Richard’s IPad to determine if a Used vehicle that I found was towable behind the RV. Only certain year, make and models of vehicles are towable and most need to be manual transmission to be towed, which are not as prevalent.

After spending about 2 hours researching used cars, and car sharing programs I finally decided we should just rent a car for the time we are on Vancouver Island. We had been talking about heading south once the border opened and not having a tow car has just helped us make our decision to head south in January. The money we would spend on buying a car in B.C., plus having to get BC insurance (which we know is very expensive for anyone from out of Province), just made our decision easier for us to head south.

Tomorrow we have a lot of running around to do in finding someone to take Jerry and hopefully give us some money for the car. We need to empty our stuff from Jerry, load that up in Newman, cancel the insurance on Jerry, and then get the car back to Joe and Berneice. I’ll also need to amend our ferry reservation to Vancouver Island as we won’t be towing Jerry along. That will save a few dollars too….I’m tired just thinking of all of everything we need to do tomorrow!!

So our 3 days in Lake Country didn’t turn out as we had planned. God was really laughing at us I guess! Touring wineries and doing wine tastings was not in the cards for us, but having a wonderful catch up with Joe and Berniece at a beautiful winery restaurant today definitely made our time here special!

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