Friday, 28 November 2014

The Isolation Ward

I've blogged before about just how isolated it can feel here, particularly in winter (non tourist) season. This is still a fair sized place, there's just not a lot of people coming or going this time of year and everyone seems to sort of hibernate til spring when we are back to farmer's markets and festivals.
At least Bridget doesn't mid hanging out on her own!

 We're super close to Vancouver as the crow flies, but the reality is all these beautiful mountains and ocean inlets make it a bit tricky to access and you'd need to take a boat/ferry/airplane to come visit me, you can't just drive along the highway the whole way.
Or a flying boat! We flew on this plane a few summers ago and it was so much fun :)
The trade off of course is the crazy amount of wilderness right outside our back door. Literally right outside my back gate I can hike, mountain bike, or go four wheeling for days. If I had a mind to, I could ride from the barn to my house crossing only one road - it would take all day, but it would be kind of fun! We've also got multiple beautiful lakes close by, and of course the ocean. Property prices are high, but only a fraction of those in Vancouver.

BUT some days the costs and logistics of travelling and living here suck more than others. Today, separate facebook posts informed me that 1) the main feed store is out of grain and the truck is cancelled until Monday due to ferry delays. 2) The hay truck is arriving this weekend and a ton of hay is going for the low, low price (sarcasm!) of $480/ton. More if you want it delivered to your barn. Even more if you want it unloaded and stacked. 3) There is a wonderful hunter/dressage coach willing to travel here from the city for weekend clinics. The cost will be $240 for two 45 minute (shared) lessons, provided she stays with someone and we can find cheap airfare.

Coming from Alberta so very recently, it's all a bit of sticker shock. $240 would have bought me 8 one hour lessons. $480 would have bought me at least 2 tons of the same hay this time of year (it's trucked here from there). And of course it takes a bit of getting used to that some services simply aren't available here on a regular basis. Like a large animal vet. Or apparently a feed store with inventory.

Budget constraints mean I'm going to miss out on the above mentioned clinics, there's just no way I can justify that expense once a month when I'm not gainfully employed (YET...I did get that job, but hello part time hours). Hopefully some more affordable activities come along, but be warned, you may be (even more) bored by my ramblings of trail rides and a weekly lesson for the remainder of the winter.

12 comments:

  1. It's a small enough city I prefer to be somewhat vague, but we're on the mainland on the northern part of the Sunshine Coast :)

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  2. oh my god those hay prices...I'm cringing. And I though $50/week for roundbales was killing me...

    Just found your blog though! The horses are adorable :) Or should I say, ponies

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    1. I'm thankful our climate is mild and they get fat on air - they can supplement themselves with pasture a good part of the year! I have no idea how I would afford to feed a TB like your guy here :(

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  3. Wowza those are steep prices O.o
    My sister is now living and loving life in Vancouver, I visited her back in May. Had I known you were in that neck of the woods I'd deff have tried to come say hi. Maybe if i am lucky enough to go back someday

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    1. We could have a blogger meet up - I'm even in Vancouver quite often for fun horsey weekends :)

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  4. it's definitely a trade off, i suppose... those prices are definitely enough to boggle the mind. but of course all that wilderness.... sounds so peaceful!

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    1. In the summer I wouldn't trade it for the world...in the winter though it's easy to feel a little stir crazy!

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  5. Eek! Those prices are crazy!! But i know some days I would really enjoy being away from the city...

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    1. I miss the city when I'm here and miss the wilderness when I'm there. There's just no pleasing me :)

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  6. It's such a toss up between the city where you have more access to EVERYTHING (except nature and natural beauty), and nature (which of course, has serene peace and beauty). Sorry about the lack of horsey-food and education! :( That's a bummer, but it does look absolutely gorgeous!

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    1. It is beautiful here...and we may have just arranged a discounted rate for the clinician so hope is not lost yet! *fingers crossed*
      Next time we're near the city I'll be the hillbilly with the truck loading up on farm and horse supplies to take home with me. Which reminds me of a funny story about a poor, poor parking valet at a fancy downtown hotel thinking he needed to arrange to bring the contents of our truck up to our room :)

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