Quadra Fall Fair / Tristan Arrives in Vancouver!

Trip Start Jul 03, 2012
Trip End Dec 16, 2012

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What I did
Quadra Fall Fair
The Sand Bar Restaurant

Flag of Canada  , British Columbia,
Saturday, September 15, 2012

Part of the joy of travelling is the unexpected adventures. Last weekend I ripped a big hole my only jeans trying to coerce a goat onto a truck we were transporting to the Quadra Island Fall Fair petting zoo. My host family was providing the ducks and goats for the day. It was a great fun day with lots of activity, performances and demonstrations. In the community centre you could find the best judged tomato, egg, squash, flower arrangement, jam, quilting and more. The 7 year old son was excited to have his connex spacecraft exhibited in the junior exhibition for construction. He and I also enjoyed watching the Zucchini races where children had turned a humble zucchini into a mean racing machine.

For the adults their were plenty of animal shows including dog races. A very light hearted competition where owners could show off their canines exemplary obedience (or lack of!) My favourite pooch was called 'Crackers' who seemed to have been given an appropriate name.

It was sad to leave my host family as they were very kind and looked after me well, however I was also very excited to return to Vancouver to meet Tristan. Two and a half months had flown by (thanks to Skype) however it seemed like forever since we had seen each other in person. I took the Island express bus to the ferry terminal in Nanaimo. We had a very small bus load, and I was fortunate to have a good humoured bus driver who decided to take the scenic route for me. Instead of travelling the inland highway we took the beachside drive and even stopped to take photos of the Sea Lions along the way!

I arrived back in Vancouver, to find our home away for home (for at least the next 5 days). I had undertaken 8 hours of travel in car, ferry, bus, ferry, bus and was pretty exhausted. I prayed for an elevator but instead I found myself at the bottom of a long flight of stairs. The Urban Hideaway guesthouse has a quaint garden patio with long vines and a quirky/hippy atmosphere.

The next day after a good sleep I met Tristan at the airport and after an airport scene that would rival Love Actually we had a Tim Hortons Coffee. Tristan showed me how the special coffee lids worked that I had been yet to master the whole time I had been here! The rest of the day we toured Granville Street, had a massive $7 lunch of sushi that gave us enough leftovers for dinner. Sushi is very good and extremely cheap in Vancouver. We also did a bit a walk around Stanley park - getting a little bit lost in the process. Tristan appreciated his singing & dancing tour guide but wished I'd concentrated a just a little more on my navigational skills! :-) 

On Thursday we took a bus to Granville Island to view the hive of activity. The Vancouver Fringe festival was taking place and we had booked tickets to a show called 'Opera for Heathens'. It was held in a makeshift theatre in a coffee house. The smell was fantastic! The show was a consisted of a blending of modern and classical genres. Think Johny Cash Guitar with Mozart Voice and your getting the gist! After the show we had a very nice dinner at the Sand Bar Restaurant overlooking the water. The atmosphere in the restaurant was warm and inviting with a piano singer. I had the most amazing salmon and Tristan loved his pan-seared scallops.

Friday was an early morning rise to meet our tour with Eric to Capilano Canyon. Although Eric is in his 70's his zest for life and pace kept us on our toes the whole day... It wore us out too! He has constructed some amazing tours that use only the public transport system and has perfected the timing. He invited us all back to the hostel after to celebrate the 17,000th person on his tour tour and gave us some gifts, cookies and juice. He is a real character who obviously loves what he does and has a passion for travel.

Saturday we had planned to go to Vancouver Island however we we both exhausted so we instead decided to have a nice 'relaxing ride' around Stanley Park. I'm still traumatised from gripping onto the handle bars so here is Tristan's more colourful account of the ride.

"Tandem Bike or Single?... We decided to give the Tandem a shot, the experience began with me, the bigger weight by a long shot, at the front and Shae sitting behind me. The decision to get a tandem bike was the best worst decision of our lives, i do not recommend it as a first date pickup activity. We got off to an ok start (with minimal shouting), Shae was trying to steer from the back seat (for balance), in doing so she was turning my seat wherever she wanted to go (often not the direction we were going). Then the ride got interesting. Words started to fly from her mouth when ever we came to a slow bend, or even too close to the edge. Often profanities were followed by SLOW DOWN... and there was a lot of that. We slowly got the hang of it, She didnt like when i joked about going down the grass hill, going off road was a big NO NO!!! After stopping for fish and chips, we decided to see how we would go the other way around.... This is where the laughing and the tears began. First thing Shae does as soon as we take off is turn STRAIGHT OFF the path and down the grassy hill headed for the lake..... "Honey.... where are you going??" followed by a long scream was my first reaction. Shae couldnt steer (nor break by the looks of it) so we pointed in the other direction, back towards the path and gave it another shot. We got on a roll once i figured out that if i dont hold on, we are a lot more successful. So there we are, Shae steering along the path (this time) and me riding behind her with no hands, it worked like a well oiled machine.... until the oncoming traffic came....

The oncoming traffic gave her kamikaze vibes or something, we headed off the road again and back on to the grass, this time heading straight for the lamp post. The screams and laughter we all mixed together on this adventure, the people walking on the path nearby gave some very unusual looks as this couple rode past, one not holding on, waving his hands above his head and screaming while the other pointed them directly at the lamp post.... IT was a ride to remember, but even after so many other amazing experiences on this trip, i still rate it as one of the best."
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