Oh, Canada

So for those who don't know, we're taking six months out of real life to do some travelling as a family. We left Australia in early July 2017, and, after a brief visit to see family in the UK, we took off again. First stop, Vancouver!

Flying with a 2-year-old and a 1-year-old is never going to be the luxury experience the travel industry would have us believe flying still is, but we tried our best. Master H loved his Puro headphones (volume-limited so we wouldn't worry about his ears being assaulted for hours on end and Bluetooth to stop Miss H from chewing the cable), and Miss H was pretty good. Flight across: tick!

boy-headphones


Having landed without incident we bundled our crazy amount of luggage into a taxi and set off for our accommodation which is in an area called Arbutus, just south of the better-known suburb of Kitsilano. We're staying in a quaint little 2-bedroom cottage which is actually a converted garage. Known as "laneway houses" these are fairly common in Vancouver. We did have to get creative with a stairgate though when we found the staircase not very conducive to one at the bottom. It is occasionally used as a cargo net by the 2-year-old, but mostly it does the job.

stairgate


So, children and luggage securely relocated, what does one do in Canada? Seek out maple syrup, of course! As the kids were waking up early the first few days and being big fans of the great Aussie tradition of going out for breakfast, we set off in search of pancakes. Tick! (Sadly the coffee was terrible, but I had been warned.)

pancakes-1

pancakes-2

pancakes-3


So this leads me to our first observation: everything here comes in pretty big sizes. Not as big as I've seen in some places in the US, but still, the portions are generous. Check out this block of cheese we got from the local supermarket:

cheese


Our second observation is that, for all this is a big country with an even bigger neighbour (with whom they are very at home - being so close to the border most of the TV comes out of the States and people we've met in shops often refer simply to "North America") - anyway, for all of that, there is very little choice in the shops by way of brands. And even product lines within brands seem somewhat limited - for example, I've now looked for muesli in three different supermarkets and there are really only a few to choose from, unlike the countless variations I'm used to seeing in Australia or the UK.


Our third observation, however, is a much more interesting one: Vancouverites are so very considerate to pedestrians. People walk here more than they do in a lot of US cities, mainly I suppose because it's so nice and flat, and so we've spent a fair bit of time walking to parks with the kids either in the buggy or merrily toddling along beside us. And whenever we get to a major road I scan my way left and right to find the nearest crossing, but I needn't bother: the cars all slow to a stop to let me cross. At first I didn't quite understand what was happening and started looking around to see what everyone was slowing down for - then I realised it was me!

street



Rightio, enough observations: here are some photos of us at the afore-mentioned parks:

park

park

girl-at-park

swings

These photos show off Vancouver's blue skies, which we've enjoyed most of the time so far. However we did have a couple of rainy days in our first weekend here, so we visited Science World, which was brilliant. After an hour and a half the kids' brains were frazzled, which was just as well as so too were our legs running after them!

science-world-water

science-world-suction

science-world-piano



Coming up in the next post... my birthday, Stanley Park and meeting friends (some old, some new)

Comments

  1. Sounds like you're having a great time Fi! Keep up the blog posts xx

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