I awoke early in the morning with a parched mouth. The booze was flowing freely in celebration of our trip the night before, and I could feel it this morning. There was only one thing that could help me conquer this beast and move on with my day, coffee, and lots of it!
I’d spent a few hours of my morning in peace, drinking coffee and writing on my laptop. A few hours passed until my travel companions had awoken. We made a quick makeshift breakfast of leftover dinner that we had from the night before and then packed our belongings and left. Our next destination lay West, and so we chased the rising sun to our next home in Lillooet.
The drive was somber at first as we cruised through the streets of Kamloops. The sidewalks were busy with the shuffle of daily life and the sun was bright and warm. The skies were blue and the clouds were few and far between. Seemed like it was going to be a nice day.
Another stop, and another coffee later and we were outside the city and back on track towards Lillooet. We re-traced the route we took on the highway that we came in on. Our first photo stop was for a mock Wild West Village that we happened across on our journey. It seemed like an eccentric hobby project created by a fanatic of old Western movies.
As the journey continued, sitting in the back of the Van I began to sip a bit at a bottle of Jack Daniels that I bought the night before. My companion in the passenger seat, Deven, shared my interest and we occasionally passed the bottle between us. The whiskey warmed my face and stomach with every sip and made me rowdier for our adventures.
Along the way, Gerrit took us on a detour up a maintenance road on a looming mountainside. Up there we found a nice spot to sit and enjoy the view. My companions took turns shouting obscenities and pelting rocks at a helpless tree while I sat on a tree stump sipping at my bottle of Jack, watching branches and pine needles burst and crack. We were in good humor and joked around on the mountain’s edge for a little while. At one point I even took a short ride on the roof of the van flat on my stomach with a death grip on the roof supports. Maybe not the smartest move in retrospect, but still oddly satisfying.
Some other notable stops included a small island that was nestled in off of the side of a highway in a beautiful blue lake, which had a tiny wood cabin built on to it. There was also a massive canyon at one point in between two mountains and we lost ourselves on a backroad for a good hour looking for something off the beaten path but ended up with mostly just some wasted time.
Eventually, we arrived in Lillooet, a fairly small rustic town nestled in between the mountains. In a valley below ran the Fraser River with muddy brown water and connecting with it upstream was a crystal blue mountain runoff which stirred into it, leaving a swirl of color between the two before fading back into a muddy brown. This place felt wild and disconnected from the rest of society. It was its own entity.
We found our Airbnb retreat and made ourselves at home. It was a home fit for a happy hippy with an electric guitar, plenty of space to write, decorated with paintings and other works of art.
We went out for a decent meal at a local pub, burgers and sandwiches and beers, and then more drinks were had back at our accommodation. We spent some time playing the guitar there and singing our hearts out like happy idiots.
The last hurrah of the night was a midnight walk along the train tracks. We walked to the edge of the village and then sitting at the edge of a small cliff, across a valley from a towering behemoth of a mountain I found it difficult to fully appreciate my surroundings without losing my balance. I wondered why the Earth was swaying and bowing like ocean currents. Oh right… I must be inebriated. The stars were sparkling and bright among the night sky. The details of our surrounding were hard to make out, but the noise of the rushing river below was more clear than ever. We stayed here for some time enjoying the peacefulness of the night sky and the silence of a sleeping city before quietly making our way back to our place in town.
It wasn’t long before I had made my way to bed.
Two more days to go… Goodnight Lillooet.
To be continued…