Monday, October 30, 2006

Brrr...its cold here. Temperature on the Molson sign said 2C this morning and I just heard that there was snow in Chilliwack on the weekend. If I wanted these types of conditions I would have stayed in TO.

Dinner with Gary and Cheryl was great fun last night. Our waiter kept coming up and then turning and walking away when he realized he wasn't going to be able to get a word in. I entertained them with stories of my adventure to the North while they filled me in on their trip to Hawaii with the boys for the Molokai. We definitely were having the most fun of anyone at the restaurant. The food, like last time, did not disappoint. We all started with the soup which was unbelieveable. for my main course I had the Congolaise moule frites and man was it good. Despite being stuffed we still went for dessert sharing the belgium waffle and some banana fritters...both were delicious.

Sunday, October 29, 2006

Gary and Cheryl are in town for a few days so I am off to meet them for dinner tonight. I've made reservations at Chambar...I can't wait for some moule frites and fun times...its impossible to not have a great time when you're out with them.
It crazy windy here today, the weather network says gusts of 65 KM...I'm guessing that is pretty strong. On my way to yoga I am going to wander by the beach first to check out the waves. Hopefully I can get a few pictures to show you what it looks like.

By the time I got to the beach the wind had dropped considerably. The waves were still pretty big but no huge crashing ones like I had expected.
Last night I went to the Parade of Lost Souls here in Vancouver. The parade is a celebration of the circle of life and death with more than 200 performers and easily a couple of thousand paraders. I was sad that I didn't go in costume because almost every one in attendance was dressed up. We arrived just a little too late and missed the main performance in the park but we still got to see many of the performers as they wandered the street enteraining the paraders.

My favourite had to be Le Roi du Quebec. This guy was dressed in 1970's style wrestling garb and was going around challenging anyone and everyone to wrestle him with the worst french accent I have ever heard (besides my own). Three times we stopped to watch him, with the final time being to watch him wrestle a Lego Man. It was hysterical. There were two Lego Men and they kept tapping in each other in and out. At one point I really though Le Roi was going to kill one..and I think he thought so too.

The ghostly tango dancers were also very good. One woman was madly stomping around the dance circle and every now and then approach someone in the audience and give them a piece of her Spanish. We quickly figured out why it was easy to get a spot right at the front of the circle as that made you prime target to be a dance partner for one of the performers. Despite my constant jerking my head to the left so they pick Scooper, he never ended up being a victim.

It was so much fun. Next time I will wear a costume for sure as I think you would feel more a part of the event rather than just a spectator. It also allows you to not be yourself which from the looks of things was a lot of fun for many of the participants.

Friday, October 27, 2006

Two things this morning.

  1. I do believe 12C is the perfect temperature to walk to work
  2. If I eat another rice crispy square this morning I will be sick

Tuesday, October 24, 2006

Hmmm...I walked over to Winners at lunch today in search of wool socks. What I left with were stockings.. 2 stockings in fact. Not exactly what I had in mind when I set out.

Monday, October 23, 2006

I've started updating On My Bedside Table. I should have a few more reviews up tonight and I hope to fix the section on the side by the same name. It will actually list what is on my bedside table (books..not all the other stuff) and I also want to add the Book Basket as its loaded up with books just waiting to be read.


It was a fairly quiet weekend. Friday night I hung out with JM and baby Ben. We attempted to watch a movie on PPV but couldn't seem to get it to work. So after some hot chocolate with marshmallows (yum) we called it a night.

Saturday morning Ben had his first official run in his new baby jogger. It went well, but unfortunately the stroller did not slow JM down as much as we would have hoped.

Sunday I poked around Granville Island looking for Christmas gift ideas in the artisian shops and then wandered around the food market picking up bits and pieces at different vendors. I got myself some beautiful double smoked bacon which I can wait to fry up. I also picked up all of the ingredients I needed to make my chicken dumplings. After a quick nap (I set the timer for 1 hour) I got to work on the dumplings and two hours later I had some 60 of them and a nice batch of wonton soup (the wontons being the chicken dumplings). I froze all of the soups minus the one I brought for lunch today and made myself about 5 packages of the dumplings ready to fry up or add to soup. I am set for quite some time...the freezer can't hold much more in the way of left overs frozen for lunches.

Thursday, October 19, 2006

I'm not sure if I mentioned but my job in Van has been made doesn't look like I will be sorting mail in Deline anytime soon :( I'm now responsible for Marketing and Sponsorships for BC & Yukon Territory. I've been pushing for the NWT but it seems like the Prairies aren't ready to give it up.

My first official sponsorship assignment is working on our figure skating sponsorship. This should be interesting as we have a hockey player (me), a speed skater (my branch lead) working with a figure skating club that is new to hosting an event of this size. "What do you mean checking isn't allowed?"

Toe Pick!

Wednesday, October 18, 2006

I've got a new link on the blog to On My Bedside Table. As per your request AS, I will try and update it regularly. If you are reading anything good or have a favourite you think we'd like let me know. If you are really keen and I trust your taste then I'd even be willing to give you access rights to post...yes I know, its very big of me.

Okay..,must go to bed now. I was planning to log off a good hour ago.

Good night!

Tuesday, October 17, 2006

Ackk! I've just discovered that NWA does not fly direct between Van and Detroit must have just been for the summer. Crummy!

Monday, October 16, 2006

Yeah for me. I got two exciting packages via interoffice mail today.

The first was a cd from Tat called The Last Kiss.I think it might be a movie soundtrack, I've just thrown it in the cd player and I'm liking what I've heard so far.

The second was some tunes on a memory stick from Dan which I am just in the process of copying to my computer. This too looks good. It's got some Cold War Kids, Sufjan Stevens and Smoosh who I just recently heard something from and liked. I know I can always trust Dan's musical recommendations, he's never misled me.

It's a good thing Trent brought the sign because I could have had problems picking him out of the crowd at the Deline airport.
Happy Birthday

Sunday, October 15, 2006

The rain has arrived here in Van. I'd been warned that the beautiful weather wouldn't last forever and yesterday afternoon it turned cool and in the night the rain began. Such is the way of the seasons, at least I got to the UBC Apple Festival yesterday.

Photos courtesy of Niki Boyd...photographer and partner in crime extraordinaire

It was so much fun. Why has it taken me so long to visit the UBC Botanical Garden and Centre for Plant Research? There is so much more there than apples as you will see from some of the following photos. It was very cool to discover that they donate the fresh produce to help the homeless. At the farmers market I picked up some great preserves, mini dill pickles, pickled garlic (YUM) and sliced dills. It was so hard to choose just three..I'm regretting not getting myself a jar of the Maritime Chow was so good.

Saturday, October 14, 2006

After my run this morning I am off to the UBC Apple Festival at the UBC Botanical Gardens. I've been told I need to try the Ambrosia, a variety that has only recently been discovered. Soo excited. Trent and I made apple pie on the weekend and it was so good that I might attempt a few little ones that I can freeze so I can have pie when ever I want it.

Must remember to take my camera.

Friday, October 13, 2006

Vehicle inspection + hotline booties = a good deal.

This morning I went to get a vehicle inspection done on the Santa Fe so I can get my car plated and insured here in BC. I asked the guy at the ICBC office where to go for it. He said the Canadian Tire right next door did them for $108 plus tag and taxes or I could go to this other place that was $48 but it was about a 10 minute drive away. At a $60 dollar price difference I decided it was worth the drive to Cambie so off I went. Well....was it ever worth the drive. I walk into the place, a classic grimy garage and discover that not only is the guy a mechanic he's also a total surf junkie selling surf stuff on the side. I left with a pair of Hotline booties for $50 and the promise of a good deal on a suit when it comes time to upgrade. Sweet. So the 10 minute drive basically got me a free pair of booties as my total bill came to less than the Canadian Tire charge for the inspection.

Tuesday, October 10, 2006

I'm back :(

To say the trip to Deline was an adventure would be an understatement.

First off, the visit with Trent was great. There isn't much to do in Deline at this time of year but it was nice to see where he lives & works. We had a wonderful Thanksgiving dinner at the local RCMP officer's house and I got to meet many of his friends and collegues who were all very welcoming.

Now back to the adventure. I left Van on Thursday evening and spent the night with Trent's uncle in Edmonton as my flight to Norman Wells left at 7:45 AM from there Friday morning. From Norman Wells (NW) I was to catch my flight to Deline at 4:30 PM. The flight into NW went fine. I had about 6 hours to kill so I walked into town, visited the museum and then grabbed lunch at the MacKenzie Hotel as Jane's Friday Chinese buffet is infamous. Once I was done my lunch I wandered back to the airport and sat around for the remaining 3.5 hours.

Through out the afternoon several flights out of Deline were delayed due to poor weather conditions at the destination airports. I was assured everything looked good in Deline, the bad fog was in the other direction. At 4:30 PM we loaded the 12 seater twin otter and set off for Deline, stopping in Tulita on route. On the short flight to Tulita (25 minutes) I chatted away with the man next to me and filled him in on my plans. We were in row 1, right behind the pilots so that they could turn around and speak with us too. At Tulita we all got off the plane and I chose to just wait outside the office while they unloaded luggage and supplies staying in Tulita. About 10 minutes later the pilot comes up to me and tells me that we have to head back to NW as the weather has turned in Deline. I laughed and said that he was very funny. He said no really, we have to head back. At this point I develop a huge pit in my stomach when I realize he isn't kidding. He then asked if I want to stay in Tulita or head back to NW. I had no clue so I asked him what he would do and he said he would go back to NW. And so I did after a paniced call to Trent's answering machine saying we were turning around and going back to NW. Its a good thing I decided to go back as all of my luggage, along with my napsac/wallet weren't on my plane, they were loaded on the second plane that had never left the ground.

The picture here illustrates where Norman Wells is to Deline

I got back on the plane and as one can imagine I was devastated. A guy on the plane actually asked if I was ok..I looked at him and said "No...I'm really sad." It was all I could manage to say, I can only imagine how I must have looked. When we got back to NW I somehow made my way to pay phone and called Trent. He was back from the Deline airport by this time and miraculously had contacted the local hotel (The Mackenzie River Hotel) to arrange a room for me and by the time we got off the phone they were there to pick me up. (Not that I needed anything to prove to me how great he is but his actions that afternoon really proved to me what a lucky girl I am to have him in my life). The North Wright boys assured me that they would get me to Deline the next day and that I would be the first one on the flight scheduled for 9:00 AM. Having spent half the day at the airport (2 airlines) I had spent a lot of time talking with the guys at North Wright so they were sympathic to my situation.

Friday morning I was back to the airport for 8:30 AM only to be confronted with fog, thick thick fog everywhere. The boys kept telling me it was very uncommon for it to last too long and that they rarely had to cancel flights two days in a row. At noon one of the boys finally said maybe I should head back to the hotel and that they would call me when the flight could go. At this point I was prepping myself for another night in NW as it really didn't look good. Distraught I walked back to the hotel and had myself a birthday lunch of french fries and Diet Coke. Jane, the owner, was kind enough to let me go back to my room where I tried to relax and wait out the weather.

At about 1:45 PM the sun finally started to be visible through the thick fog and minute by minute the conditions improved. The boys had told me that once I could see across the river (outside of my trailer/bedroom window) then I was to wait until 15 minutes past the next hour and then call to see what was going on. At 2:00 PM after a cautiously optimistic call to Trent I was delerious with excitement as I was now able to see across the river I could also see trees in the distance. I packed up my napsac and ran out to the diner planning to have a DC to kill the time until I could call and check the flight status. Jane asked if I had called and I explained what they had said about calling at 15 minutes past the hour. Before I could say anything else she was on the phone with North Wright and the next thing know I was in a van being whisked back to the airport.

By 3:00 PM the plane was loaded and we were finally on the route to Deline. By this point everyone at the Norman Wells airport,the Mackenzie River Hotel and from the sounds of everyone at the Deline airport knew of our situation. I had all 11 of my co-passengers cheering as we approached Deline and they were all trying to see Trent out the windows as we taxied in. So finally at about 4:00 PM on Saturday I was in Deline. We still had the birthday breakfast of french toast and bacon that we had planned just for dinner.

So there you have it. It was quite an adventure getting to Deline but once there none of it matttered. I'm hoping for quiet birthdays in the future, that was enough excitement for a lifetime.

Street signs in Norman Wells and the Mackenzie in the background

Thursday, October 05, 2006

I haven't had much time to give an update on my trip to Whistler. On Saturday, after a delicious lunch of potato & leak soup and a Cobb salad I headed over to Whistler Mountain and took the gondola up to the Roundhouse. From there I took the Peak chair to well, The Peak. The scenery was absolutely stunning. The contrast of the green from the evergreens and reds, yellows and oranges of the scrub was beautiful. I wished I had had more than the party camera so I could capture the real beauty. But alas, it was me and my party camera alone on top of the mountain that day. Anyways, here are few shots I took of my adventures that day.

1 day!

It occured to me this morning that for not being a big birthday person I have managed to celebrate my birthday in quite a number of different places over the years.

When I was little, quite often we would celebrate it up at the lake in Haliburton. Having your birthday close to Thanksgiving always makes the potential for a dual celebration and when you love apple pie there's nothing wrong with that. So here's a short list from what I can remember of the last few years.

2006 - Deline, NWT
2005 - Grosse Ile, MI
2004 - TO
2003 - London/Leigh on Sea
2001 - Paudash Lake, Bancroft
2000 - TO
1999 - I think I was in Halifax or Cape Breton

I am a lucky girl!

Wednesday, October 04, 2006

Less than 48 hours now until I'm in Deline. To say I am excited would be a wee bit of an understatement.

I'm almost packed. Well that's not quite true. I still need to find a way to get several bottles of wine and some Guinness into my suitcases. Yes, I did say suitcases. I'm sure the security agent that gets to screen my luggage will be quite puzzled with the assortment of goods I have packed. From mixing spoons to answering machines to blinds I have it all. It's going to be fun unpacking it all.

The conference in Whistler went really well. The Four Seasons there is unbelievable. To start, it is absolutely beautiful. My room faced the mountains and with a fireplace and giant soaker tub it was an absolute oasis. Then there was the customer service. I have never experienced anything like it before. Each person who came to my room or dealt with me at the front desk used my name and went out of their way to make sure I was taken care of. Ohh and the pumpkin and orange scrub. Wow. Close to 90 minutes of scrub and massage and I was ready for a good nap before dinner down in the village.

2 more sleeps