Ample Power
All the Power... Anytime... All the Time... Ample Power!

Recovered in Canada

January 25, 2002, about 1 a.m.: We're back from Vancouver, B.C., Canada after going up with our truck and car trailer to pick up the VW van that was stolen in December.

After collecting a windshield full of parking tickets over several weeks, with the driver side wind wing broken and glass all over the floor inside, some alert ticket writer apparently checked the stolen data base and the van was towed into a `police' yard. The sting of the $100 towing and storage bill was lessened by the fact that at least we had our van back.

As expected, the wind wing on the driver's side was broken. The glove box was totally empty with much of the contents strewn about the interior. The inverter was missing, along with Ruth's new boots, and the tea we purchased in December for Christmas presents. The cell phone was missing, but they left the DC charge adapter in the rubble. The crock pot was also among the lost items.

Because the bunk we installed separates the passenger compartment from the engine compartment, the gear over the engine was still there. Thankfully, they didn't take the time to pry the rear door open. Stored over the engine was our tools, tent, thermal rest pads, tire chains and spare oil.

The bed was torn apart with blankets and sheets strewn about. In the jumble, we were amazed to find first one of my vintage hiking boots, and then quite happy to find the other. Apparently they looked too worn to be worth stealing ...purchased in 1973, the Herman Survivors have kept my feet dry, warm and comfortable for many trail miles.

The toilet/tank and macerator pump were still present, albeit with cigarette butts in the bowl. Hopefully there were none flushed into the tank because the macerator pump will not be happy with the filters.

In a cold downpour we started the van and backed it onto the trailer. Something in the clutch makes an occasional grinding but at least we were able to get it on the trailer without much effort.

The heavy rain and wind persisted most of the way back to Seattle. At the US border our papers were checked. This time we were prepared with passports and titles to the truck, trailer and van. The agent listened to our story and then asked if we were bringing anything back from Canada other than the receipt for towing.

Despite the rain and wind for 150 miles, the duct tape over the broken wind wing was still in place when we unloaded the van behind the office. In the light we could see a small ding and long scratch on the passenger side of the van, and one of the bumper end caps was missing. But ...but we had our diesel van back, and we vowed to stop cussing it on the uphills and leave that to those behind us.