Saturday, December 24, 2011


Well. I am here. I have been since Tuesday... sorry for the delay in posting.
My very first impression of Canada was “wow, it’s very orange.”
As we landed in Vancouver it seemed that every light in the whole city was orange. Haha.
The first night was overwhelming.  I vaguely knew where I was going, but hadn’t yet got a grasp on the transport system, the money and for the first time since I left home I realised how alone I was...well it was really the first time I had been alone since I left home so makes sense I suppose.

I had to change trains in the city centre... this is trickier than you would think. I had to drag my luggage up and down several flights of stairs and through a shopping centre... yep very practical! Eventually a stranger offered to help drag one of my bags, she was actually going to the same station as I was and gave me a lift to the backpackers where I spend the first 3 nights. So grateful for the kindness of strangers!

I spent the next 2 days exploring the city. So much walking!!! I got my Social Insurance Number so I can now pay tax... I think... I’m still not entirely sure what this number does, but I think it’s a bit like a Tax File Number. I also got a new phone number. I pretty much have a handle on the money situation, I like that they have coins for $1 and $2 like we do. And the transport system makes so much more sense these days.
  I almost belong here now.

Over the last 3 days I have managed to hang out in Vancouver Harbour

and Stanley Park
 and Science World (I want to take my class there! So many fun things!)

and the Library

 Van Dusen’s Garden's Festival of Lights

  and Capilano’s Suspension Bridge

  also a government building and some fun shops including the biggest bookshop I’ve ever seen. but i don't have photos of them.

It’s pretty cold here, but not actually as bad as I imagined. I am getting really good at de-jacket, glove and beanie-ing every time I enter a building and re-jacket, glove and beanie-ing every time I go outside. Layers are important.
It hasn’t snowed yet, but the ground has that icy crispiness & the ponds have a thin layer of ice on them... oooh! So wintery!

Staying at a dodgy backpackers meant I had to share a room. The girl I ended up sharing with was actually an English teacher from Russia, who is now retraining in hospitality here in Vancouver. We had some interesting conversations! It was cool to hear about a country I know nothing about, and hear about Russia’s view of the world. It was also fun to share classroom stories with another teacher. Some things are the same no matter where or who you teach. Oh I am going to miss teaching!

Right now I’m on a really big ferry to Vancouver Island to spend some time with some distant relatives.
I think I am going to like Canada!

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