Day Four/ Granville Island

Trip Start Dec 17, 2011
Trip End Jan 14, 2012

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Flag of Canada  , British Columbia,
Tuesday, December 20, 2011

As opposed to other trips that we have undertaken so far as a family, here in Canada we have mostly wandered around without a plan.  Today was no exception.  We have found it difficult to get up in the mornings, maybe because it is very cold and grey outside, or perhaps because we are still jet lagged.
In the lead up to this trip, we have had many suggestions from everyone from the guy at duty free alcohol in Melbourne to the guy at the Post Office in Beaconsfield telling us good things to do in Canada,  Like the good tourists that we are, we have taken this all on board, and are checking things off the list.  Today, we are taking advice from the post office guy, and are going to the Museum of Vancouver.  This happens to be near Granville Island.
We took a bus, with the help of some Canadians to Granville Island.  This Island reminds me of a kind of quirky, eclectic place.  It feels a bit like an old circus, or showgrounds.
There was a kids market, which we went into to have a look.  It wasn't like the markets we saw in China; large warehouses with cloth separating the stalls.  It was little stores, with British style exteriors. The items in the stalls were expensive, and it felt a bit like a high-end marketplace.
There was a huge teddy-bear sitting outside one of the shops, which I sat next to for a photo.  It moved suddenly, which scared me.  I guess I made a good reaction, because a lady with a clipboard approached me, and asked me to sign a permission form to allow my reaction to be on TV.  Once I was told about the secret cameras, I saw that there were cameras everyone; one across from me, one above my head, one from the second story, and more.  The lady said that she'd send me my part if the show ever made it to TV.  I wish I had done my hair. And my face.
We went upstairs, and were the largest children there who waited to speak to Santa.  We each took a turn sitting on his lap, something I hadn't done for years.  Dad wanted me to tug on his beard, but I'm pretty sure it was real.
We went into a public market on Granville Island, too.  It was more of a food market, with jams, bread, chocolate, and more. There was a really cute stationary shop as well, with so many cards and stamps.  One thing we've learned in Canada, is that all prices advertised or printed on the item is the price without tax.  I have found myself more than once observing that the price is $5.25 on the label, and $6.15 at the register.  It's difficult habit to get into, especially when you get the exact money ready. On another note, they also still have one cent coins here.
We went to a small fish and chip shop, which always is better in theory.
We finally made it to the museum.  It is a nice museum, which chronicled the changes in Vancouver from the late 1800s to the present day,  It was really interesting to hear the honest description that the museum gave on the treatment of the Chinese in the early 1900s to the Japanese-Canadians after the Peal Harbor bombings.  In 1923,  there was a law passed making it illegal for Chinese to immigrate to Canada, and before that, there was a $500 tax for each tax immigrant. 
After the Pearl Harbor bombing, those of Japanese descent, even those who have been Canadian for generations, were moved to camps, and their houses and possessions were repossessed.  They were all considered guilty by association.  Nowadays, there is still a large Japanese community, so the past has not dented the population too much.
After the museum, we got back on the bus and went to the mall to shop.  The mall is huge, and stretches over a few blocks. We didn't stay for long, as it was crowded and a little claustrophobic. We went back to the hotel for a little while, before we went back to Steam works for dinner.  We arrived at about 5:45, but the restaurant was already full. They eat very early here, as it is cold and dark outsider by 4pm. The shops close early as well, except for drugstores, which seem to never close.
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Jessica on

I hope your trip goes well :)
Are you still in Paris the week end of 7th january? Cause I'll go to Paris from 7 to 9 january.I hope you'll be there :)

See you soon I hope ! :D

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