Snow was witnessed for the first time yesterday! I somehow managed to haul my body out of bed at 6am, totally missing the free hostel breakfast because I was that early (bummer) and get down to the sea bus by 7. The sea bus, which is a type of ferry carted me and 400 other freezing Vancouverites to North Van, where I proceeded to board the #236 bus (I'm like a local with the transport there, it's amazing) up to Grouse Mountain.
The gondola from the base of Grouse Mountain reaches about 1000 metres elevation, and it tilts on about a 130 degree angle at some points of the trip I swear. It was beautiful though, you could see all the way across the harbour to central vancouver, and to the left there was nothing to see but beautiful dense pine forest. Over central Vancouver there was a great view of English Bay and all the ships that pull in to port in Vancouver. I took a lot of photos but the camera doesn't really do justice to the view at all unfortunately.
Snow is a lot harder than I thought it would be. Very compacted which I'm sure makes for a seriously painful fall if one has coordination issues. Thankfully yesterday I managed to stay on both feet, however I didn't engage in any winter sports so that may have had something to do with the sense of equilibrium.
I hung around for a couple of hours taking photos and looking around, but if you don't ski or snowboard there isn't really a lot to do, so I eventually headed back down and jumped on the bus where I was regaled with the life story of the bus driver. Nice guy but I swear he was trying to set me up with his son. He's a first year law student at UofBC. Any takers, ladies?
Halfway down into North Vancouver, I jumped off the bus to go to the Capilano Suspension bridge. The bridge is about 70metres of the floor of a river. (Ki'apilano being the native Squamish word for "beautiful river") and it connects two sides of rain forest with a tree top walk etc. Once again many bad quality phots were taken and when I find a computer that will accept an SD card I'll put them up on facebook!
When I eventually made it back to the hostel last night, after also checking out Lonsdale Quay Markets, Chinatown and Pacific Mall, I checked into my new room (I extended my stay so I was moved to a different floor). Luckily so because I met two amazing girls; Juliette from Cairns and Aimee from Glasgow, Scotland. They were on vacation for the weekend from Guelph University just outside of Torotno, they're on exchange from their respective countries. We ended up going to dinner followed by an improv comedy club last night and a couple of pubs which was an awesome experience (aside from the getting hopelessly lost part & the dancing with a grandpa part- hey, it's all part of the experience, or whatever). When I go through Toronto in a week or so I'm hoping to catch them again before they go home after exams!
When we eventaully got back to the hostel, I set my alarm for 5am so I could get to the train station to leave for Seattle. My asshat phone however, turned itself off in the middle of the night. Luckily I woke up by myself at 5.30am in a total panic, but managed to get a cab to the station. On the unlucky side, I left my favourite boots in the hostel. The silver lining is I can buy new ones!
The train ride to Seattle was really beautiful. Puget Sound and Elliot Bay were out my window so I pretty much just looked at them the whole way. I had the seat to myself most of the way too so that was cool. I just do wish American customs officers would stop asking me what my purpose is. It's like, I'm wearing a backpack that's bigger than me, moron. What do you think my purpose is? World dominion?
I just got to the Seattle hostel, which has recently been renovated and at this stage no one else is in my room. I'm failing at life trying to do my washing on this stoopid American system but hopefully everything turns out semi cleaner than it is.. Think I might head off to see the human bodies exhibition a bit later!
Hope everybody is taking care of themselves. And for the love of God somebody had better be taping Bones and Private Practice!