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Wanderlust cured’s Travel Diary

Monday, 02 Mar 2009

Location: Canmore & Sunshine, Canada

MapAfter 46 cms of fresh snow last week the saturday up at the ski hill was more than I could have hoped for, good friends, KAVU day (I have just been corrected on previous entries of the correct spelling) - who know that in Clear Above, Visibility Unlimited the clear is spelt with a K...must be a Canadian thing. Few freezing rides up the chair lift on a certain part of the mountain, with the winds bringing the temps down - but nothing this tough little cookie couldnt handle, I was only thinking of getting off and carving my way back to the bottom again...ahhh, lifes tough.

So after all of the snow we had the last week, we have now had a few days in the plus temps...which bascially has resulted in the town being like a giant slushie, a big brown muddy slushie. What this means for me is that I have to take on a different tactic when walking or riding my bike, kinda war like. Strolling the sidewalk is fraught with the danger of being completely covered in slush from the big trucks hooning by, so you need to watch your back. Each footstep needs specific care of placement as the slush hides the ice lurking beneath...it waits there for you...ticking away. You praise your fellow man for fighting alongside you, or creep in behind and follow the footsteps, because if there is a particulary tricky spot...he is bound to find it before you do ;)

Let me also point out for all of you food lovers out there that Canada has some amazing food. I have the benefit of knowing a few locals and being taken to a few hot spots for some scrumdiddilyumcious meals, heaven after a big day skiing, or something to get you going in the mornings. Mum, when you make your way over here we can do a food lovers trip of Alberta :)

I am soon to be attending a local Calgary Flames game of Hockey...now for you Australians, this is Ice Hockey...but there is no other hockey here - or as I have been told "field hockey is for girls". The spirit of this game is alive in all Canadians I have met, not just like us, when we celebrate when our team hits the Grand Final, or it is considered a guys thing to watch, but this is the kind of spirit that makes people fly the flags on their car all year round and everyone gets involved in the games. The brawls on the ice are merely "tactical" I am told, done at the right moment to syke out the other players. I cant wait! We are getting "nose bleed" section tickets...so should make for an interesting night.

I was also shown a little shop in Banff which held half of Canadians wildlife, dead, mounted on the walls...but amazing to see the size of these creatures. Australias biggest wild animal would be its Grey Kangaroos or Camels...but when you see a Moose up close this thing is giant, and the bears, wolves, elk, cougars and in the corner the "merman" - half human/half fish...I didnt dare to question it, but it had arms and flippers - do you think they are pulling my leg? I cant wait to get out when the weather is better and see some of these animals in their natural habitat, because really, I dont find much natural of animal heads in cabinets. Ive also been told that this represents the real Alberta - raw and rough really, fortunately it still maintains its pristine beauty and I look forward to some crazy mountain bike rides and some amazing photographs of this place in full bloom.

Love, hugs and kisses all the way back to OZ land.

R.J