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Jon’s Travel Diary

Friday, 13 Jan 2006

Location: Kamloops, Canada

MapIt is my last day in Kamloops and then Aunty Rose and I are heading to Vancouver Island where I will attend my 2nd 80th birthday party of the trip, which is always fun as I've come to find out.

Two nights ago we went to the Cowboy bar Cactus Jacks and rode on the mechanical bull. It was a fantastic time. There were three levels to make it through, and after the second level you wish you didn't make it to the third. Everyone in our group made it to the third level because we had just the right level of liquids into us but unfortunately I was tossed 3 metres just before the bell. For the last few days I've had bruises on the inside of my legs. I understand why the cowboys wear chaps now!

Yesterday I toured the Ginseng Factory which was extremely interesting. Few fun facts because I know your all wanting to know something about ginseng

* ginseng is only grown in three locations in North America, Wisconsin, Ontario, and Kamloops BC
* it takes four years for the roots to be fully developed before they are able to harvest them
* the root can grow as old as 80 years old
* when harvested they pick the ginseng root up, put it into these huge washing machines and then dry the ginseng much like you would see at a tobacco farm
* the chemical compound of ginseng has many different functions such as stimulates the CNS, enhances DNA & RNA synthesis and enhances protein synthesis (which is all good!)
* it helps balance our bodies hormones
* can be put into many different products such as tea, tablets, wine, maple syrup, honey, candies, or you can just chew on the root
* VERY expensive this ginseng, for a small zip-lock bag of ginseng roots it is $100

Anyway it was very interesting, and everyone that worked there was Asian because they are the experts when it comes to ginseng (the origin of ginseng). So now you know!

I've also been introduced to sushi as my cousin made some for a few friends and I last night. I can tolerate it but I think you'd have to eat it for a week to get use to it. Everyone has to try it once I think. A very healthy meal, and in my case more healthy when you quit early.

Things are great here and I continuously play back memories of home. Miss you all