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Wanderlust cured’s Travel Diary

Thursday, 08 Jan 2009

Location: Vancouver, Canada

MapWell Hello!!

I thought it time to write my first installment of my trip away and although I have only been here less than a week, so much happens! My long haul flight totaling 24 hours saw me getting served food at the weirdest times, I left Sydney at 12:40pm 5th Jan and arrived Vancouver 5:45pm on the 5th Jan after 24 hours! Try to explain that to your brain when it wonders why it cant sleep and doesn't know when to eat. The first leg saw me next to a nice Australian working in Hong Kong heading home after visiting family in QLD and the second leg sat me next to a chinese couple who needed the bathroom every hour or so (lucky me getting the isle seat) and the big husband slouching across into my seat for most of the flight...oh the joys!

Touchdown in Vancouver was the first time I felt that real excitement that I was sure the trip would bring when a winter wonderland appeared along the sides of the runway. My excitment came from that fresh sweet cold that my annual snow trips with friends from Victoria had, the same feeling of good times to come - luckily this time I wasnt to get drunk in the spa! Anyway...back to Vancouver, some of the streets on the bus ride into the city is exactly what you would picture in a movie...snow 2 feet deep, with tracks only for car tyres - and heaven knows how some of those cars get out of snow which is up to the tops of their cars! Its been raining since I arrived, today it has given me a break so I dont have to kit up in all waterproof gear. The guy at the outdoor shop suggested an umbrella (this was after I spent hundreds on waterproof and warm gear) but the streets here are torrents of water as the snow melts and most people wear gumboots...I plan to do lots of walking so I have my waterproof boots now to get me by.

Vancouver is a lovely city, I am yet to see alot of it, but plan to spend the rest of today heading towards the famous stanley park for a nice view of the city and walk the waterfront. Vancouver has been voted the most livable city in the world...I hope I find out why today because the hostel I am currently staying at is in the "nightclub district" and along with alot of poverty and beggers, I think there is an inch thick of spit, cigarette butts and chewing gum along that street. All part of the fun!! I hate to say this also, but every street has a starbucks and a pizza place...Canadians eat pizza for breakfast, lunch, dinner and maybe a late night or early am snack - they even have giant pump bottles of ranch dressing and the sort to place ON TOP OF the already cheese laden pizza!

The girls in my dorm room took me to Amsterdam cafe last night and its the only legal place to smoke marijuana, was interesting talking to a few of the locals who barely could keep their eyes open and when they saw my garlic cheese bread I think the munchies kicked in...My jacket smelt of it all night and Im sure I got plenty of funny looks! I went down to the bar under the hostel because the noise is unreal when your trying to sleep so "if you cant beat them join them" and met 3 Aussies and 1 New Zealander and we stayed up late talking about life, girls and lawyers (they wouldnt leave me alone with that one) and the jokes would make a sailor blush. Once the music went down at 1am I thought it time to head off to bed.

I think that I will only spend another week in Vancouver and then head across the rockies to Alberta and to the snow fields (one of the main reasons for coming here), I will look for some work and carve the slopes with all the other "snow hounds" as they are called here. I will come back across the rockies and into British Columbia when the weather gets better and take my time doing all the tourist things (and once the money is bolstered yet again).

Photos are coming...Ive been too scared to get my camera out because of the torrential downpours so today I will try to take lots and post them on facey shortly.

Average tempretures in Vancouver are 3 degrees...where I am heading next average tempretures are -13 to -7 degrees...so the warm clothing will come into good use then!

Well...I better get out there and enjoy it before the rain starts again, hope all is well back home and the summer is giving you some warm days...I am thinking of you all.

Love Rachel XX