We've made it to Australia!

Trip Start May 31, 2012
Trip End Aug 08, 2013

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Where I stayed
Westways Bed & Breakfast
What I did

Flag of Canada  , Alberta,
Wednesday, June 6, 2012

    So here I am with a kangaroo, just to prove that we actually made it to Australia this week.

    Just kidding! This was at the Calgary Zoo and the kangaroo isn't even real! Man, you guys sure are gullible. On another note, did you realize that gullible isn't even in the dictionary?! Ha, got you again!

    We did actually make it to Calgary last Wednesday after taking the bus down from Edmonton. 24$ a piece for our bus tickets, pretty sweet deal. We stopped off at Enterprise to pick up our car that we had reserved for 6 pm, without realizing that Enterprise closes at 6. So we then cabbed to our B&B and just never went back to pick up our car. We didn't really need one anyway, so we just went to Budget on Friday and got a better deal. Turns out we didn't really need that car either, but it was nice to have it just in case anything came up, and we took it to the zoo on Friday, but I'm getting ahead of myself here! Let me go back, back to the beginning (of our stay in Calgary).

    We arrived at the B&B and checked in, a lovely little place in the Mission district of Calgary, close to the Elbow River and pretty much right in between Laura's place and Jesse's place (Kara's brother). That first night, Wednesday night, we met Laura, Duncan and Chris at the Ship & Anchor for some drinks and a late dinner. Kara and I are pretty sure Laura has taken us to the Ship every time we visit Calgary, but we're not complaining because we love it there! We both had the fish and chips and some beers to wash it down.

    The next day was my birthday and so we slept in a bit, had a nice breakfast of bagels, smoked salmon and quiche and then went for a walk around the Elbow River. It was a beautiful day for a walk and we went pretty far, exploring the area. We walked around Mount Royal and looked at all the nice houses, then went for a coffee and to Safeway to pick up some lunch. We got a salad mix, put in some avocados and walnuts and ate outside of the Westways B&B. In the afternoon, we took a nap, read our books and hung out in the room until about 4:30. We then went to Earl's for a pre-dinner snack of meatball sliders and some beers.

    Due to the fact that it was my birthday, it was my call on what we were going to do that night. So, we were looking at the free newspapers that listed events for the week, looking for a show or some music to catch but there wasn't anything that was really jumping out at us. Then we noticed a talk at the University of Calgary, entitled 'When Will we Find E.T.?", given by Seth Shostak, senior astronomer at the SETI Institute in California. SETI stands for "Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence" and I've heard this guy on podcasts before. He's a very engaging and interesting individual, so for my 33rd birthday, I decided we should go and listen to this guys talk. It was free and promised to be very interesting, so we took the train out to the University after our pre-dinner snack.

    It turned out to be a great presentation and we really enjoyed it. Seth Shostak maintains that we should find evidence of life in outer space within the next 25 years, and if he's wrong, he owes us all a coffee. He's based his predictions partly on Moore's Law, which holds that every 18 months to 2 years, computer capacities double. This is due to the size of transistors that can fit in a circuit, and it is a consistent pattern in the computer world that every 2 years, memory doubles in computers. He used this as an analogy to the search for extraterrestrial intelligence, in that every 18 months, SETI's search techniques reach twice as far into outer space as they had in the previous 18 months, and it's only a matter of time before they search far enough out there to find something. He maintains that it would be miraculous is we were actually alone in the universe and that every time that we believe we are special in some way in the universe, we turn out to be wrong. Anywho, this post is about our time in Calgary, not about Seth Shostak and aliens! But if you want to hear more about what this guy has to say then check out this podcast; http://www.startalkradio.net/?p=10

    We met up with Laura and Duncan after the talk and had a nice dinner at District, and it came out that Duncan's favourite wrestler is the British Bulldog. I never would've guessed that, I pegged him for more a Ric Flair guy, but, as Chuck Berry said, you never can tell. Laura's been busy at her new job with Pi Engineering, splitting her time between project managing with them, working 2 days a week at the Unicorn and making short films with her iPhone. A poster she had put together for Big Rock Brewery was just recently featured at the Eddies in Calgary (a contest and prize gala that features contestants' entries, both print and video), but she got busted by security when she tried to take it home! She showed us pictures of the night and it looked like a lot of fun.

    Kara and I went to the zoo on Friday, and at the risk of impinging on Kara's 'Wildlife Wednesday' (which she has yet to start), I'll tell you all about some of the animals we saw; tigers, camels, gorillas, hippos, a giraffe and dinosaurs. We also saw the new penguin exhibit, they sure are cute little fellers. That's all I can say, Kara might break my legs if I spill too much.

    For the weekend, Rex and Mo (Kara's parents) came up to visit from Medicine Hat and we all stayed with Jesse and Stacey. It was a very relaxing weekend with excellent food and great company. We played a bit of guitar with ukelele and harmonica backup, putting together a pretty good rendition of 'Somewhere Over the Rainbow'.  Laura and Duncan came over on Saturday night for dinner and lots of wine. Herman the cat and Gabby the dog were fun to play with, although Herman (just look at his picture, he is a devious little fellow) kept waking us up. The first night he knocked over Kara's water glass at 6 am, tearing up the stairs moments later to escape retribution. The second night, we used a thermos with a tight fitting lid so thwart this evil genius' attempts, so he just jumped on Kara's head instead. He reminds me of Brain from 'Pinky and the Brain'. All in all though, he is a fun character to have around and to give the odd pink belly to.

    On Sunday, Stacey's parents threw her a graduation party. Stacey had graduated 4 years ago but in the midst of her actual graduation, her Mom got sick and so had kept it in her mind since then that Stacey deserved a graduation party. They were such a sweet family and it was such a treat to meet her parents, Marilyn and Randy, her sister, Mandy and Mandy's boyfriend Chris. They had put together an amazing spread of food, a nice collection of wine and topped it off with a cake featuring Stacey's likeness. See pictures for evidence. Following the party, we stopped off at Laura and Duncan's on our way out of town. We listened to some Howlin' Wolf and some Dave Brubek and then hit the road, the road to Medicine Hat!

    Onwards and upwards, or at least sideways to the Hat.
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Laura on

That is one big brown river!

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