Wednesday, 7 July 2010

Day 5 – 6.7.10 – Tuesday Vancouver – Pemberton

Started off the day heading over to Granville Island to visit the market. I’ve never seen so many different types of fruit and veg in one building, and also bagels, pancakes, pastries, snacks, flowers... Wandered some of the touristy shops and some of the more expensive arty shops, enjoyed lunch at the sea wall and watched the many taxi boats go back and forth.
From there we dropped of Maurice and Heather and continued on out of Vancouver towards Pemberton. We stopped off at the Shannon Falls which were stunning, water falling from glaciers... the water was pretty cold! Stopped off in Whistler and planned to go up in the cable car thing but it was already closed so we wandered around, dodging the hundreds of boarders and cyclists.
Made it to Pemberton and found the worlds dodgiest hostel where the people were totally drugged up and a wee house was held up by a slide. Thankfully, we had the wrong hostel! Had dinner out in a nice restaurant on the balcony overlooking the mountains. They look somewhat like Scotland has taken steroids! Back to the hostel where Alma (one of the owners) gave me a book of pretty Canada pictures and gave us advice on what to do if you encounter a bear. She also made us empty the car of food or the bears would rip the car open to get to it!

Tuesday, 6 July 2010

Canada Trip 4.7.10 – 15.7.10

Day 1 – 2.7.10 – Friday
Iona to Edinburgh

After a few tricky goodbyes, many hugs and a rush to the jetty, a rough ferry crossing was the beginning of much travelling. Woozy stomach was settled by listening to music and sleeping on the bus to Craignure. A few harsh awakenings with braking later and I hopped off the bus in the rain to hear an announcement that the ferry was having problems with its main engine. Oh, great! While sitting in the ‘Craignure Tunnel’ as I like to call it, I enjoyed people watching...mainly American’s with bizarre hats and German couples arguing! So, now that the train has been missed, Cal Mac set up travel back to Edinburgh for me in the form of a taxi with an overly anxious American woman and two German guys, one of whom tried to eye and feel me up most of the way...

Day 2 – 3.7.10 – Saturday
Edinburgh – Gatwick

Who would have thought that such a short leg of the journey would take 5 ½ hours?! Delayed plane never helps. Interesting turbulence... stunning sunset. Roasting hot hotel now!

Day 3 – 4.7.10 – Sunday
Gatwick – Vancouver

5.30am alarm... zzz! Quick shower, watch some Wimbledon highlights on TV (what’s one of them?!), hop in a van and end up at Gatwick South Terminal at 6.40am. Yawn! Straight through security, pick up a massive chunk of money, grab some breakfast and start the 15 minute walk to the gate! Now on the plane deciding what to watch on the TV... and ‘I’m Yours’ by Jason Mraz is on... yay!

First ever trip to an airplane toilet – interesting experience! Enjoying the entertainment thingy, watching some film about a country singer, but I can’t remember what it’s called! May be tie for some in flight games soon, after I finish my hot chocolate...

Ice bergs over Greenland! Free chocolate mini ice creams! Declaration card filled out!

Only an hour of the flight left and I’m sore and tired and ready to get off now. Dum deed um. Hopefully going to have some nice views on the way down.

There were lovely views on the way down to Vancouver and it’s the strangest feeling coming in to land when the runway begins in the sea! There’s no being sure you are going to land on dry land!

Found luggage and off we went to find the hire car. I was so relieved when Martha hopped in the driver’s seat first! She’s at least driven on this side of the road before. Watch out for dad trying soon...

Drive in to the city and saw my first yellow school bus – they do exist! Also saw a few electric buses and other bizarre things. Walked up Granville Street, hunted out Heather and Maurice and continued to wait for Heather to get her costume on to then run around the street carrying a fake kite and wearing a blue wig. Fetching! Back up to Heather’s flat where Maurice cooked us dinner and then I crashed out by 9pm... 23 ½ hours awake!

Day 4 – 5.7.10 – Monday

6 am and wide awake. Toast time! Loaded some photos on to Facebook and then went back to bed till 9am. Silly jet lag!

Nice lazy morning including maple syrup and brown sugar porridge with a nice cup of tea. Waiting now on dad and Martha to arrive and I think we’re then off to Stanley Park.

Drove down to Stanley Park and parked up next to some Mounty horses, very cute! Saw some eagles flying, many ducks and swans, quite a few turtles and some raccoons, including cute fluffy baby raccoons! Had to laugh at a heron landing, it looked so unstable and certainly not as elegant as it is whilst in flight! All of this was around the Lost Lagoon which is just an amazing place. Went over to the totem poles next, via the yaught club and the beach wall, passing by the naval base and Canada Place too. Wandered back to the bar & grill to have lunch (including poutine!) via a lovely beach and kiddies water area where Maurice got a tad wet!

After Stanley Park we headed off up to the Capilano Suspension Bridge. Wow! It had been recommended to me by some guests we had in the Abbey last week and I’m glad they did so coz it was stunning. Very expensive mind you! Amazing views from the bridge and it was glorious sunny. Enjoyed the tree top trail too. Can’t even begin to imagine the work that went in to the park as a whole, it was so well put together. Apparently the bridge can hold two 747 planes! Enjoyed a cup of tea with some tiny black squirrels running around. Cute!

Quick stop in to IGA store before a brief sit down at the flat. Out to dinner at Earls around the corner next which was lovely. Pretending to be Heathers birthday...although it’s still 12 days away! Back up at the flat now, loaded a few more photos and now watching TV before bed. I’m knackered with this time difference thing!