Saturday, December 31, 2011

Ferries and such

Hi friends.
Well today is the day that Samoa will never know. Did you hear they jumped over the International Date Line and skipped today? That’s so fun, sort of like flying home from the US... only without flying, and the whole country not just a plane full of people. I think time is such a funny concept.
So anyway this post is in honour of the Samoan people who will never know Friday December 30th 2011.

I am currently on a ferry about to leave Sidney, BC to go to Anacortes, WA (back into America). The customs woman was confused as to why I had an ‘expired’ departure card in my passport and proceeded to rip it out, but then read the small print and said “oh no, this is current until June” and had to staple it back in.
Sidney’s ferry depot is not as fancy as the one in Vancouver (Horseshoe Bay), instead there are 3 small demountable buildings – tickets, customs and waiting room. Also they wanted the fare in US dollars, even though we were still in Canada. Lucky I had some.

Vancouver Island has been fun. It was good to have some ‘down time’. I got my fix of TV & Jackee and I finished her Christmas puzzle in under 24 hours. It’s fun that relatives are relatives, even if you’ve never met them before! I felt like I was staying at my mum or Grandma’s house.

Oh, I just realised we are sailing. Haha. So I am no longer on a docked boat, but a moving one. Good times.
3 hours of water ahead. Apparently this ferry takes a scenic route through the islands, so if I see anything good, I will let you know. Also, I thought I had these ferries figured out... and sat up the ‘front’ nope turns out this boat turns around, unlike the one from Vancouver, so I am now on the sunny side at the back. Hmm I may need to move at some point.

Vancouver Island is pretty. Mountains, lots of trees, deer... what more could you want out of an island. It’s actually a fairly big island, not as big as Australia, but Jackee and Larry said it takes 3 days to get from end to end. The funny bit of Vancouver Island is that it is part of BC (the province on the mainland that has Vancouver and Whistler in it) and actually the capital of this province, Victoria, is on the island, even though most big businesses have their offices in Vancouver. Funny.
Oh I had 2 other funny things I wanted to tell you about my trip so far that I had forgotten about.
1. At Union Station, in Los Angeles, to catch the train to Anaheim we were told to wait at the Amtrak departure gate to find out which platform we would be assigned to. The random thing about this is that the gate was in the middle of the room. It didn’t lead anywhere, you could walk all the way around it. It was like a door frame erected in the middle of the room. Funny. Once ‘the gate opened’ we were told which platform we needed to go to and then just walked the same way passengers of other trains and other random people were till we got to our platform. Anyone could’ve walked onto the platform... the departure gate has no purpose and is just a humorous gate to nowhere. I wish I took a picture.

2. On my flight to Vancouver from LA (oooh cute island on the right!) the plane was a small one, I think it fit about 70 passengers or something. It was so small that we had to ‘check-in’ our cabin baggage at the gate so it could be put under the plane. The overhead compartments were so small I only just fit my folded up jacket in! There is no way my cabin bag could’ve fit up there. Why did they not just get us to check it in in the first place?

Oh I just thought of a 3rd thing!
3. At the airport in LA I needed some breakfast, so I asked for a ‘small cheeseburger meal’ (pretty standard Kaye food). Nope, too hard.
“Do you mean the 2 cheeseburgers, fries and a coke?”
“Um no, 1 cheeseburger is plenty!”
“Well we can’t do that as a meal.”
“ok... “
“That’ll be $7.20”
If only I had been paying more attention I would’ve realised that the 2 cheeseburger meal was only $4.25 or something ridiculous! Ripped off! But also humorous. It costs more to eat less in LA. I think that could be their new motto.

Ok I am getting too hot on the sunny side of the boat. Time for some lunch (as you Australians begin waking up in tomorrow (along with Samoa!)). I’ll bring you new news about my Seattle adventures soon!

post-script: so I sat at the ‘back’ of the ferry (which I originally thought was the front) all the way to Friday Harbour (half way) then decided to move to the ‘front’ of the boat, mostly because the seats were comfier at that end, but also because I wanted to see where we were going. Well I think the boat knew my plan and the ‘front’ was no longer the front. It decided to go the other way. So even though I was at the front, I was at the back again. Pfft!

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