The snow was sliding over the Trans-Canada like a moving carpet of white insects. Underneath that stream was a thin layer of ice, polished down to a millimetre's thickness by the traffic. And straight ahead of me, right between the clouds and the horizon, was the setting sun, casting its pale and heatless glare over this blinding expanse of mirror and crystal.
It wasn't the worst set of driving conditions I'd seen, and there were only a few cars that had spun out into the ditch... but it was certainly enough to assert that people really shouldn't have been on the highway without good reason.
What was my reason? I'm so glad you asked.
It all started with a movie. Hobo With A Shotgun is a depraved and mind-blowing gorefest about a hobo with more integrity than a corrupt police force in a lawless town. Blood, blades, and bladders fly across the screen with remarkable frequency, and always with an undeniably joy. Not that people in the movie are happy to lose their body parts, mind you -- but rather, that everyone making the movie was having an absolute blast during its production, and it shows.
Something else that's readily visible is the fact that this film was shot in Halifax. You know, in case the multiple deaths by hockey skate didn't already indicate that this bizarre film was Canadian.
So, needless to say, I had to see it. But it was playing a limited release -- would I drive to Calgary, or to Regina? That matter was quickly decided when I saw on the Internet that Corner Gas was holding a set auction in Regina that weekend.
I was packing my bags before the webpage finished loading.
(In case you're unaware, Corner Gas is a sitcom which was filmed in and about a small town in Saskatchewan. It's terrifically funny, and beloved by those whom it affectionately mocks. The province even proclaimed a "Corner Gas Day" in its honour... it is a thing of legend. Rather than lose three days going through all the episodes looking for my favourite moment, here's one of the first Season 1 gags that came to mind.)
Anyway, it seems the auction was actually being held today, on Sunday. When I got there at 13h00 on Friday, it was simply a gigantic garage sale, which had only been running for an hour. The attendees were all planning to come back on Sunday, or perhaps later in the day, once they'd found an ATM and a friend with a truck.
I, on the other hand, seized the moment. Behold!
The coffee maker from the Ruby Diner!
Truly, this has been the greatest weekend ever.
And now, if you'll excuse me, I have six seasons of Corner Gas to watch -- I also bought a denim jacket at that sale, and I shall not rest until I find out just who it was that wore it.