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“Life’s challenges are not supposed to paralyze you, they’re supposed to help you discover who you are.”  Bernice Johnson Reagon

Today it’s time to head north – home to Canada.  I’ve been gone from home for three weeks now.  Hubby flew down over the weekend, and is driving back with me.  Tonight we were to spend the night in Northern California – just north of Shasta Lake – with my niece and her family.  However, as we approached Shasta Lake, this is what we saw . . . a huge plume of smoke billowing above the trees.  As it turns out . . . a vegetation fire had started in the median of the highway about two miles north.  As we were stopped in traffic, fire trucks and police cars and fire-responders kept flying by.  We even saw several PG&E trucks.  At that point it was growing to about 350 acres on both sides of the highway.  After two hours of sitting still in 100 degree F weather, traffic started moving – only for us to find out that we were being re-routed and not allowed through.  We had to go back to Redding, east on 299, and then north on 89 to Shasta City.  From there – we were not allowed south again on I5, we had to continue north.  My niece lives about 20 minutes south of Shasta City.  Therefore, we did not get to see her.  We ended up finding a hotel in Ashland, OR – just across the Oregon border.  We had left the Bay Area in the morning about 9:30am for what should have been a 4-5 hour drive.  We arrived in Ashland about 10pm – over 12 hours later!  

I was SO disappointed to not get to visit with my niece and her family.  I could have let it completely ruin my day, my experience, the time my husband and I were spending together.   Happily, I am married to an incredibly supportive and amazing man.  We both realized that the whole situation was out of our control.  After discussing the alternatives (just going back to Redding and spending the night, or finding a way around the fire), we decided that we’d explore the route around . . . not knowing how long it would take us or how bad the roads would be.  Well, the roads were quite amazing  . . . as good or better than I5 . . . and though there was alot of detoured traffic we moved along at a good pace.  All in all, it took us about three hours to go around.  And we did what we always do – talk about life and listen to good music and just enjoy each other’s company.  




This is shot with my iPad as the sun was setting and we were back headed north on I5, just south of Yreka.  Gorgeous sunset with the full moon on the horizon . . . 




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