Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Canadian Getaway

After finishing my final final last Thursday, I was more than ready for a getaway. My criterion were specific but not too demanding, in my opinion. The rules were:
A city
Somewhere not in Utah
Where I don't know anyone
Preferably haven't been before
I presented this list to several people and was less than satisfied with their suggestions. When I finally had the chance to ask E (one of my favorite-est people of all time) what she thought, her answer was almost instantaneous. Vancouver! And this is why I love her. She knew exactly what I was going for and a more perfect location could not have been suggested. A city...on the water...right by mountains...where I don't know anyone...and have never been before. Needless to say, the weekend was amazing. Here are the highlights (not in chronological order) :

The Cambie Gastown hostel. The prices were cheap, the accommodations clean, and the shower strong. All you could ask for in a shelter.

Vancouver's Public Library was designed by the same architect as the Salt Lake City Library. Here is some history if you are interested. For those of you familiar with the library in Salt Lake, the next picture should look familiar.

I spent about three hours at the library finishing up my last paper. I cried and then almost high-fived a stranger (in the end I refrained so as not to look like a looney) after I finally submitted it. I was pretty excited.

As per Kat's suggestion, I headed to Stanley Park to visit the Aquarium. First, I rented a bike and trekked around the outer edge, which is all seafront. The views are unbelievable from pretty much every point along the path.

After my bike ride, I wandered back into the aquarium. I arrived just as the dolphin show was starting which is always entertaining. :)

This sculpture is in the fountain just outside the front doors.

And this is a picture I took for E. He was just so sad looking. I wanted to take him home and protect him. These marketers are good.

At one point I was really pooped from all the walking and I happened to see a little green spot out the corner of my eye. I wandered up a little staircase and found this:

So I sat down and read for a while. It was lovely.

On Sunday I went to Granville Island and wandered around the markets. There was a lot of really interesting things to see and soooo much delicious food to drool over. I was a big fan of the bread stand. I was able to resist the temptation but just barely. Everything looked delectable.

After the markets, I wandered around along the seawall. I came across these dragon boats hiding under the Burrard St. Bridge. Every year, Vancouver holds a HUGE dragon boat race. Read more about it here. It looks like a lot of fun. Perhaps I will be back in town next June :)

After crossing the bridge, I headed into the West End area. The Davie Community Garden caught my eye. The gardens are incredibly well kept. Wandering around them was very peaceful (especially as the rain had just stopped and the sun came out).

Here are some funny things I saw over the course of the weekend:

My last night in town, I ate at the Steamworks restaurant. The spicy pizza I had was amazing and perfectly complemented my Blueberry Mojitos. A lovely end to a lovely trip.

If you want to see the rest of the pics....check them out!