Full of luscious Malaysian food and rested from sitting in the cool of the restaurant we decided we could all stand a bit more wandering along the seawall and Stanley Park. Apart from anything, Jen had a few things she wanted to show us. It was mid afternoon by the time we got back to the Devonian Harbour Park but a few of the slower marathon runners were still coming past in dribs and drabs. Continue reading Post marathon wanderings
Last night Commando went out for a run, his first in a month. He came back within ten minutes. The marathon was off. The pain in his Achilles tendon kicked in almost at once. There was no way he could run a parkrun, never mind a marathon. After all the miles and miles of training and lots of ups and downs when the pain came and went for no apparent reason, the last glimmer of hope died. It was a sad evening. Continue reading The Vancouver Marathon and five seconds of fame
Walking a mountain trail, even an easy one like the Panorama Trail, it is wise not to underestimate the weather. When the snow began to fall we left the breathtaking views and headed back along the trail, unsure if this was just a snow shower or something more worrying. The cloud we’d seen earlier looked to have a whole load of snow to dump and being underneath it when it did didn’t seem the best of plans. Not on the edge of a mountain anyway. Continue reading From the sky to the sea
All our miles of walking yesterday didn’t end with the Lost Lagoon. In the evening Jen wanted to take us out for a bite to eat at one of her favourite restaurants. We went in her car but, on the way, we stopped off at one of her favourite beaches, Spanish Banks, named in commemoration of the June 1792 meeting of the English under George Vancouver and the Spanish under Galiano and Valdés. This was the shoreline we’d been looking out at from English Beach earlier in the day. Continue reading Collecting the marathon pack
Back where we started, at the beginning of the Cathedral trail, we turned towards the Lost Lagoon. The name alone made it worth a look. It conjured images of desert islands and palm trees, although I was fairly sure this wasn’t what we would find. Somewhere off the trail we could hear the thrum of a woodpecker pecking at a tree. We stopped and peered into the forest but saw nothing but a few tell tale holes in trunks. Continue reading The Lost lagoon
While we were sitting on our bench by the sea discussing whether to carry on along the sea wall path or find a way into Stanley Park an elderly gentleman came and sat beside us. Pretty soon he struck up a conversation about where we were from and what we were doing. When we told him we couldn’t decide between park and sea he said, “There’s nothing very exciting along the sea wall here but there’s a path up into the park not far off.” And so our decision was made. Continue reading Stanley Park an ancient forest in a modern city
Today was supposed to be the warmest, sunniest day of our stay in Vancouver, not that I always believe the weather forecast you understand. There was sun outside our hotel window when we got up this morning though and, when we walked down West Broadway in search of breakfast, it was warm even though it was still before eight. Over coffee, croissants and parfaits we both agreed it was the perfect day for a walk on the beach.
We’d been warned Vancouver wasn’t called Rain City, Raincouver or the Wet Coast for nothing so, when we woke to a decidedly wet world this morning, we weren’t exactly surprised. After breakfast we popped on the wet weather gear we’d sensibly packed and headed towards Granville Island where we’d had a lovely birthday meal with Jen and Kevin the night before. At least it wasn’t cold and, as we’d previously had Jen as a guide we knew more or less where we were going. Continue reading Granville island, Downtown, rain and a free concert
We found the clock and watch shop at the exact moment we were about to give up and turn back. Every inch of the walls was filled with clocks, from huge and ornate wooden monsters to quirky plastic film themed timepieces. The sound of their combined ticking added to the illusion of being in some kind of bizarre dream where night was day and day was night. Other than the clocks the shop was silent.
“If they all chime at the same time,” I whispered, “it will sound just like the beginning of Pink Floyd’s Time.”
After ten surreal minutes, during which nothing chimed and the ticking threatened to send me to sleep we left, a few unfamiliar plastic notes lighter with a working Garmin. Continue reading Time, graves and a cool beer
My real birthday began at two in the morning Vancouver time when I woke starving and sure it must be far later in the day. My Garmin chose this moment to inform me the battery was running low. Not the best of timing but I always had the feeling it would choose the worst possible moment. Commando was still sleeping soundly so I tried, with limited success, to ignore my grumbling stomach and go back to sleep. The morning began again at five with a Happy Birthday and a present from Commando. The time difference leant a strange dreamlike feeling to everything. In a daze we wandered down West Broadway to Starbucks where we beat the morning rush and had breakfast. Continue reading Birthday number two, a pleasure dome, an ancient forest and a garden