Ashcroft, British Columbia
To Hope and Beyond
En route to the village of Saranagati, set in the mountains, is the town of Hope, a juncture where many roads emanate from. It was here that our small party of four stopped at the Town Pantry for a refuelling of the stomach with liquids. This town is also the location of the shooting of “Rambo,” a film about bandana-strapped Sylvester Stallone. Never saw the movie. Not interested really. The good thing about it is the name of God is in the title—Ram.
While Nitai Ram, our driver, went for the water and juice, I started trekking on Hwy 1. It brought back so many memories. I recall in ’96 the bridge repair crew toiling away in the not-so-pleasant rain. I remember entering into the depths of the Fraser River Valley, and imagining the Gold Rush enthusiasts trekking this same route that I was on, only they had no clear trail as I have now. https://instagram.com/p/BdnkU2dFxie/
Well, let me take that back. The countryside here is snowbound; another world from mild Vancouver. It’s piled quite high.
Road signs starting at Hope give a warning, “Oct. 1st-Mar. 1st Snow Tires.” If you operate a truck through this region, then chains are required.
With care, Nitai drove Nishta, her daughter Govinda, and myself up Venables Valley Road and parked at Manu’s pad for dinner. Then we proceeded to Partha and Uttama’s place for a sanga, a gathering of Vaishnavas, mostly traditional Canadians who settled here in the 80s and 90s. I gave a report of what I had been doing as of late—walking across the U.S.; moving about in Cuba. It’s all been good today. The chanting we did. The conversation. The spring rolls and chow mein. Very complete.
May the Source be with you!