Living way up North we often feel like we miss out on opportunities that are often available to people that live in more mainstream areas so when opportunity knocks we really do not hesitate on opening the door.
We recently had an experience on the farm that was absolutely fantastic, for us it was more than just opening our doors, this would be the ultimate example of passion and of community, or we like to believe – like family.
My husband had gotten wind through FB of a family of three that were travelling from Southern California up through the States, crossing the boarder of Canada to get to Alaska and then greater points in the Canadian North. Like a wicked road-trip of yesteryear a fairy tale of sorts, maybe you could even say a pilgrimage.
They were driving their 1966 VW Bus and this was a trek being documented for enthusiasts of all types to follow along and live vicariously through this amazing adventure through their FB Page. We eagerly became fans..! How cool is this.
Knowing they could indeed pass through our way, we wanted to extend an invitation.
As my husband is the original VW lover in the family and I come by it honestly having grown up with VW’s in my younger years I have learned, witnessed and lived the palatable passion. I can recognize the familiar smile and recognition when a person’s eyes light up as they see the familiar shape roll past them down the road.
My first intention for this blog post was to relate this back to a holiday I took one summer with my Mum. She had rented a bus off of our neighbour and we drove around the coast of Vancouver Island and some of the smaller islands camping as we went along. I have distinct memories still today sitting in the back colouring at the table as we bumbled down the road.
Yet the impression from that time and what I was discovering now through our invitation there is a greater message needed to be explored. The concept of kindness and trust which I think in some ways we as people have lost along the way needs to be realigned and examples set forth that where ever you are in the world there are people, honest, genuine, good people that want to come together and connect. This is a beautiful thing.
The metaphorical catalyst is in fact a vehicle that opened our minds is has also opened the hearts of many. Unlike most car enthusiasts, Dub lovers seem to be a breed of their own. They take it a step farther and the network is like extended family. The love and appreciation has an invisible thread that binds them, they look out for each other. They the enthusiasts take pride in preserving the culture rather than just gaining from personal self. It is like there is an unspoken code, what is yours is mine my friend and let me help you to succeed, as we will both have pride in the experience.
VW’s have touched the hearts of many and in a familiar way we are connected deeply, maybe deeper than we all know. Our common appreciation helps us see past ourselves and we connect by sharing our stories, our laughs and our love.
There is an understanding and so, when the route was confirmed and I knew the ‘Alaska Bus Trip’ would be passing through our neck of the woods you can believe it I made sure to extend our invitation. ‘Team Surf City’ made up of Jeremy (Dad), Sarah (Mum) and Tiny (Son) would be making a pit stop on the farm and we would make sure to extend any thing they may need to fuel them to their next destination point.
We ourselves were getting ready for a big road trip in the following weeks so we offered what we could. Our children were elated to know there would be a new face to play with and exchange what information young boys’ exchange.
After suggesting a good route to get the bus here, in the dark of the night we saw the bus travelling down the HWY and we heard the classic sound of the motor as our guests arrived safe. Camp fire lit and drinks chilling we rushed to the driveway to greet everyone. Out of the bus stood Jeremy the tallest most jovial spirit I have had the great fortune to meet and after he was his partner with equally BIG smile and a beautifully grounded energetic woman. At first tiny was shy yet that did not stop my boys from barraging him with interest and questions.
We had a wiener roast about the fire and after good conversation we all slowly hit the hay. Then morning came very early for me as my eager husband woke me at the crack of dawn for his excitement that there was a bus on the property and this overwhelmed him.
We had breakfast and then Jeremy granted Louis the opportunity to take the bus for a drive..! He did not come down from cloud 9 for a few days. We then helped tie up the last of the details so they could get back on the road and of course left it at the door is always open. What a great lesson for all of our children to participate in and may they reciprocate when they can as they grow older.
Even though we have now been and come home from our own road-trip, Jeremy is still on the road. It has been great following along on the FB Page ‘Alaska Bus Trip’ and seeing his incredible photography, the captures of the wildlife and the scenery with the bus are breath taking.
I urge anyone to check out the Alaska Bus Trip and see how far the adventure has taken him and his 1966 VW Bus. There is much to see whether you are interested in VW’s, geography, adventure or wildlife. There is something for everyone to see.
Copied directly from the Alaska Bus Trip FB Page, below is the recanting from Jeremy and Sarah of their time on the farm.
Posted to the Alaska Bus Trip by Jeremy Leonard
August 3rd, 2014
Fort St. John
Our VW family just got bigger!
What an great time meeting incredible people! The VW community here in northern BC rolled out the red carpet for us! Last night, our friends Lou, Tracy and their 3 kids invited us to stay on their farm. Tiny and their two younger boys immediately ran off and started playing like they had been friends forever. They had a fire going in the fire pit when we arrived, and we all sat around chatting, having a drink, and enjoying each other’s company.
We roasted hot dogs on the fire, told some great campfire tales of VW adventuring, and just generally had a great time connecting as humans.
We awoke to the tranquil sound country life: goats, horses and the occasional bird call. Lou said the he had a hard time sleeping due to the fact that there was, “…a bus in the driveway.” Later in the morning, Lou took the wheel of the Surf City rig for a little test drive. We loaded all of the kids on board, and took a spin around the block. There were smiles all around! He drove it like a true Aircooled pro! Lou has a sweet 23 window they he’s restoring and considering that he hasn’t driven a split bus in over 15 years, I think this little jaunt has inspired him to get her on the road! Later, Lou fired up his big rig and took all 3 boys for a spin, which was surely a highlight for Tiny!
Tracy cooked us an awesome breakfast, and we ate outside in the ideal temp of the morning. Thank you, Tracy!
We were taken in as family…VW family. They opened up their home to us, and showed us incredible Canadian hospitality!
Thank you so much Teves family for your extreme kindness and generosity!
What a lovely testimony to the tightly knit VW family…we were escorted to the farm belonging to the Teves Family by Louis and greeted warmly by Tracy and their three children, plus their two dogs. Louis immediately expressed his adoration of our bus and the kids eagerly checked out the interior, turning it into something of a fort. Then we spun stories and waxed poetic about adventures, life, their farm lifestyle, our coastal lifestyle, and the sweetness of community. By 1 am as we felt exhausted yet immensely content we said good night with an unwavering sense that it is these moments of connection that buoy our collective hearts amidst the madness of life. We awoke to the goofy laughs of their goats and our son checking in after he had slept slumber party style with his two new friends, the Teve’s sons. I found myself pulled to the paddock where their four horses reside and touched the velvet ears and tender hearted horse named Spirit. Then we ate a delicious breakfast prepared by Tracy in a circle outside, communing as if we were long-time friends. We feel blessed to have been embraced by the Teve’s on this Alaska Bus Trip and we look forward to hosting them in our home when they visit California. Thank you Teves Family for hosting us and shaping our BC adventure in a priceless way.