Back to the cities!!!!

Trip Start Jun 26, 2006
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34
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Trip End Feb 28, 2007


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Flag of Canada  , British Columbia,
Sunday, August 27, 2006

Vancouver - the city that wants to be!!!!!

Woke up in our lovely campsite...surrounded by trees...fortunately no bears had eaten us during the night! I was gonna miss being in the countryside...it was city after city after city for next 6 weeks...we have so many places to fit in its sure gonna be fun!
Decided to take a nice leisurely walk to a waterfal before we left...gotta get back into practice again...gonna have miles and miles of city streets to see very soon. Was only 1.5km walk but lovelt...following the insanely turqouise river...had a fun clamber over the rocks to see the actual falls....which were pretty impressive...as they had formed holes...and coverns and the spray was amzing....there were loads of barriers round rocks...not surprising really as to fall in would mean sure death...well maybe a little painful torture first!!
Then it was back in the car for our final drive. The drive to Whistler was pleasant and problem free....arrived in Whistler itself...just in time for morning coffee!The place is amazing...so immaculate and perfect....it looks like its ready for the olypmics tomorrow....unfortunately its gonna have to try and stay that way for the next 3 1/2 years! Found a cool little internet cafe and sat outside with a coffee...watching the world go by! Seemed to be failry quiet...until we took a walk and discovered where all the people were! In the summer...which i think is really cool....they turn the ski slopes into a mountain biking track....and the place was heaving with people of bikes! Would have terrified me to go down those slopes on a bike....even with all the darth vader type protection! Didn't seem to be scaring the people there much, not even the little kids!
Decided it was time to move on...even though i could have stopped there all day...it was so perfect!

Now i had a deep suspicion that the road from Whistler to Vancouver could be a problem....and i sure wasn't wrong! If the olympics are coming to your city and the place were most of the events are going to be held is 100km up the road...you gonna make sure that the road is top notch right? Well that is exactly what they are doing! they are turning the small one lane road into a good two lane road. Only problem is that is no mean feat! The road winds intself along the edges of cliffs, over god knows how many rivers and creeks and follows the railway most of the way! So they are having to blast away the rocks, build bridges...and come up with ingenious plans as to how to make the road wider...when there really is no where to put the extra lane! It is only costing a mere $600 million CAD. Not surprising i guess....but where does that kind of money come from???? Anyway it was a fscinating drive, watching the wotrk all the way along the 100km road...but man it took forever!
Finally we arrived in vancouver....spent ages looking for a supermarket...which we thought was a sensible idea while we still had a car...yes Neil can come up with sensible ideas!! Then we ate at our favoutrite place...MacD;s (not) before dumping off the car!
Checked in at hostel...its okay...no probs with it...it even has a bar! Then went for a wander....i wasn't in the mood for wandering and so winged lots....or so Neil said anyway! Headed back for food...we are trying to be good and cook in the hostel...that way we get more food...for much less money! After mash and chilli...we played Harry potter top trumps! Then headed out for an evening stroll...turned out to be a pants stroll...but hey its the thought that counts...i guess! We tried to find the sea...but couldn't...ended up having a marvelous view of the underneath of the football stadium! Kept looking for the sea...but no just bildings, buildings and buildings....did find a cinema in the wierdest shopping centre ever...but they not showing Superman here yet so who cares! The unfortunetly we somehow ended up in a very dodgy area of town! It went very dark and everywhere you looked were tramps! Whole streets where they were all lying down asleep....i was scared and demanded we turn around...which unsurprisingly even Neil agreed to do....did have the pleaseurew of seeing feeding time in tramp alley on the way out....all the tramps gathered round the communal dustbin....loverrrly!
Headed back to bed....only problem is our roommate...who is living here...is obsessed with playing guitar! In the end had to go to sleep to the annoying tones of guitar strumming...it was that ir stay awake all night.
First impressions of Vancouver....??? Not impressed yet!


The next day we just had to go exploring to try and change my opinion of Vancouver...apparantly everyone wants to live here...but im just not getting it!
Actually managed to find the waterfront. Whcih is pretty cool...if you excuse the fact that every other building in a building site! Saw a huge cruise ship which sets sail from Vancouver to Alaska...was amazingly big! oh how the other half live!!The convention centre and world trade are pretty cool too...although it seems they feel the need to build a new one? Are quite a few little parks by the waterfront...and i have to admit it is quite nice down there....still there is far too much building going on....and far too many grey skyscrapers!
Walked as far as the park...or the edge of it anyway....its the biggest park ever...which actually has a forest in it! Then walked a littl efurther and found a beach...now i have to admit that that is cool, having a beach minutes from the middle of a city....i guess if im honest the place i sgrowing on me...a little!
We were hungry so heaed to hostel for beans on toast...yes being good again.
Chilled for a while...well no i slept for a while...while Neil tried to sort out the headache that is getting to Quebec!
Then we decided to go check out Yaletown...mainly cause i had noticed there was a pub doing sunday specials! Yaletown is cool....low old buildings...all tightly packed and much morer colourful than anywhere else in town. Went in an amazing first nations gallery shop. They had the totem poles i sooo want...only problem is they are about $10,000 and somehow wouldn't quite fit in our rucksacks!
Checked out the pub...which looked cool but was way busy...decided it was too early...so wandered a little more...found some cool places to take photos...but didn't have to camera...duh! Then headed vback to the pub for a beer and to share a cheap pizza! Pizza was cool, thin just like i like it...and taco flavour...spicy meat...with salad and salsa on top!
After that just hung out in the hostel for the evening, chatting and playing cards with the numerous english people here...including the nutter from Blackpool....who had just run up a bar tab for $90!

Next day was chill out day....internet for most of the morning...got to keep you guys happy...right? Then we wandered down to Stanley park. Boght ourselves a little picnic...and sat under the shade of the tree...being watched by squirrells and crows and huge seagulls all the while. Then had a wander round the park...saw the totems, the lighthouse and amazing views of the bay and harbour....i have come to the conclusion that there are far too many residential tower blocks and that whoever designed the new additions to this city really doesn't have a clue...as they seem to stick things anywhere...not caring what it looks like! This city has no real identity it is trying to be too many others places instead of its own place...still it does seem to have some cool features...like a beach!

Anyway, headed back after our afternoon strolling and chilling in the park...checked out some of the shops on the way (which incidentally are supposed to resemble Rodeo Drive....whoever said that clearly hasn't been to rodeo drive!) and then dumped our stuff and headed to find Neils favourite place the foodcourt and some chinese! The place seemed to be closing but managed to get our chinese...got quite a plateful which we shared...but then were a little miffed to find that they were giving what was left when they shut for half the price we had paid...oh well....it was enjoyable none the less! Came back to the hostel took advantage of the cheap beer in the bar....only one...cause we are good and can stick to our budget (most of the time anyway - what can you do if it costs a fortune to get anyway...still gotta eat right?). Then played a few games of shithead and drank tea before heading off to bed. Only one day left before we fly out to the scary part of Canada, where they are more French than the french!!!!

Our last day in Vancouver...spent the morning entering more drivel for all you guys to enjoy reading! Oh yeah after venturing down the post office and actually sending some postcards! The weather today is pants! Grey and cold...a complete contrast to how it has been over the last few days..so we weren't in any panic to head out!
Around lunchtime...we guessed we should go and see something! We headed out to Granville island...the long way so we could take some photos of cool Yaletown! Then we walked across the longest bridge ever! Well no it probably wasn't as long as Golden Gate but it sure felt long. It was a raod bridge too...which was a bit scary with traffic rushing by! I was convinced we were going the wrong way...but as usual Neil was right. It turns out that the only way you can get to the island is to walk all the way across the bridge past the far side of the island and then back! Seems stupid but hey this is Vancouver! The island was tiny but cute! We found the micro-brewery place - surprisingly called Granvill Island Brewery!!! We were gonna take the tour but since we know everything about beer and have done loads of brewery tours...we just opted for a beer instead!!!! The beer was yummy...i think it is my favourite micro brewery here in Canada! After our leisurely beer and a quick update of the diary we went to explore the rest of the island. Didn't take long!!!!! There was a cool market...bit like the Pike Place market in Seattle...but not as good! It did have lots of very nice food...which made our mouths water...but on our strict budget (i had $10 to spend today and blew it all on beer!) we resisted...that was until Neil saw ice cream!! I have to say on this occasion i was tempted too! They were huge ice cream...and mine was the best being Cadbury Fruit and Nut flavour!! Our indulgences over for the day we headed back off the island...the only thing left to explore being the cement factory!!!The journey back didn't seem have as far..probably because it wasn't!!!
Back at the hostel...chilled...Neil read his book, now he has started the da vinci code he can't put it down. Neil did some packing...which is amazing...since he normally does it at the last minute! We spent more time on here...stuffed our faces with pasta...drank our remaining beer since we can't take it with us and played shithead again!
Time for an early night as we have to be up at 5:30 to get our flight! But then remembered we had to check our flight hadn't changed...and guess what ended up doing this again....still you really shouldn't be complaining as we are now completely up-to-date. Bet you are impressed, right?

Have absolutely thousands of pictures to put on here...but as yet haven't found anywhere to upload them...not that we have really looked if we are honest and there are thousands of internet cafes here....still we will put them on soon, we promise.
Maybe!!!!!!!!!!

Oh yeah and i hope you all appreciate all our time and money doing this! It has cost us about $25 to get up to date and that is a lot of money to us poor travellers!!!!

Till later....
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Comments

triciap
triciap on

Lots of brownie points
Thanks for all the effort that must have gone in to updating this log. It's taken me about half an hour to read it so must have taken even longer to write. Don't know about anyone else but I love reading about all your adventures, even feels a bit like being there. Glad to see the food and drink still feature prominently in spite of all the wonderful sights you are seeing!!

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