Bennu on Earth

NASA is at it again, bringing back rocks from space, trying to figure out where we (and Earth) all came from.  About a cup landed via parachute in the desert in the US.  They also say there’s a 1/2700 chance that we’d get hit by this half-kilometre rock sometime in 2182.  When I say “we”, that doesn’t include you or me.

By that time we’ll have lasers and space-flying cars and death-ray pistols to help us out, I think.  Or not.

Ainsworth Hot Springs pools

I’m at Ainsworth!  Yay!

The green crap on my head is not actually a hat.  It’s extremely poor photography – a plant in the background.  Instead of looking at that, here’s a view from the pool area (panorama).

I had a good soak yesterday evening after checking in & cleaning up.  The water was really nice.

There are three pools – a large, warm pool, a small hot pool connected to caves entering into the hill, and a freezing-cold pool with water trickling in from a glacier.  Before 7:00, it was all open to the public.  After that, until 9pm, it was reserved for hotel guests only, so it half-way emptied at that time.

It was raining when I got out to the pools.  This might sound very undesirable, but the combination of the cold rain & hot water was quite nice.  Later, a double rainbow developed across the lake.  I wish I’d had a camera then.  I talked to various people while moving from pool to pool.

The idea is to hang out in the large warm pool – do some swimming, splashing around, etc.  Then you go hang out in the hot pool to see how long you can handle it.  Last night it wasn’t super-hot but hot enough.  Then comes the wander through the caves.  It’s dark, hot, humid, dripping with hot water everywhere, with dim coloured lighting piped in along fibre-optic cables.

Various people sit on the floor of the tunnel and soak up the warmth, and others wander through amazed at the experience.  By the time one makes in through the tunnel and come out the other end, with the heat building up in the air, a wall of cold air hits you as you emerge from the dark.  I was one of those who sat inside soaking in the heat.

I found a built-in rock bench of sorts to sit on and watch the dark shadows go by.  Problem is, no one could see me sitting there (or even see the bench), so I startled a couple of people as they groped their way along.  One small child, as he walked along, grabbed hold of my arm and was surprised that someone was sitting there.  He stuck his face directly in front of mine to see if I was real before moving on.

Moving from the steamy hot to the icy cold is always a shock.  You climb down the steps into the freeze and immediately dunk all the way in to your neck.  If you don’t, you lose courage to do the dunk.  In goes the head for a brief chill.  If you’re still, the biting cold eventually subsides – until you shift a bit, then the cold comes back.

This morning, the hot was hotter (106º according to staff) and the cold was colder.  Apparently it is like this in the morning.  I could only stand about 6 or 7 minutes in the cold before moving on.  Same with the hot.

I bought a plastic sleeve for my phone for $10 this morning so I could take some pics & vids.  No rainbow yet.  Too bad.  That’s also the reason for the B&W photos above – inside the plastic pouch, the phone / camera seemed to get confused as to what I was wanting.  …  Just as I was writing this, the rain started.  I see it outside the restaurant window.

Guests can dip in from 8am to 10am.  Public entry starts after that.  It is completely booked – no more reservations.

Of course, here’s the coffee cup picture.

going to Ainsworth Hot Springs Resort

Finally.  After years of wondering what the resort looked like, I’m here.  It was a long but enjoyable drive that started at 6:50am.  It was sunny for the first couple of hours, but then coming into the mountains it rained the whole time.  There was also a lot of road construction.  We sat stopped for 25 minutes at one point while a road crew repaired a bridge.  Nonetheless, the drive was really nice.

I finally got to the ferry terminal!  Yay!  But … there was a two-and-a-half sail waiting for the ferry to get across Kootenay lake near the end of the trip. \

During the wait, I talked with a guy taking his family on a camp trip with a trailer.  It was his first time on this ferry.  Suddenly my car alarm went off!  The horn blared across the parking lot and into the forest beyond.  I got hold of the fob to shut it up.  I asked the guy, “Uh … you didn’t hear that, did you?”  He just chuckled.

Three ajimas (Korean ladies) were looking at an information sign.  I came over to view the sign.  “Please…?” one of them said as she held out her phone / camera.  “Yes, sure.”  They all lined up for the shot.  I called out to them, “Hanna – dule – set -” (one – two – three) … click.  I gave the phone back to them.  “Hanna, dule, set?”  “한국어하세요?” (Do you speak Korean?)  “조금 어요…”  (A little.)  We had a brief conversation before I asked them, “이거 … 괜찮아?” (Is this okay?)  “아주 좋습니다. 감사합니다!” (It’s great!  Thank you!)  We bowed, and I left.

The sail was nice – cool and breezy and not much rain.  It lasted 40 minutes.


When I checked into the hotel, lots of people were waiting.  It was pouring rain.

More later!  I’m gone to soak.

Ainsworth bound

I’m off! First vacation in a couple of years. I’m off to Ainsworth. It’s a hot spring along the BC hot spring route in the Rockies. I booked a couple of nights there, in the hotel, but I’m also bringing the teardrop trailer. I thought I would leave yesterday, but everything took so dang long but I decided to wait for this morning. Wish me luck.

inversion table

I finally bought a new inversion table to replace the one that Hanyoung stole in 2010.  Canadian Tire in Brooks, AB, was the closest store that had one.  I left work late in the evening with enough time to purchase it before CT closed.  It was a heavy brute.  What they lacked in quickness finding the product and bringing it out to me, the CT staff almost made up for by loading it into the van.

When home, I assembled part of it before making a bowl of noodles and finally falling asleep in the living room holding the bowl half-full of noodles.

The next day, the assembly continued.

It wasn’t hard.  The instructions were very precise and thorough (and wordy).  Finally, it was time to use it.  Finally, some back pain relief.

I’ll let you know how useful it is.