Jessica and I headed to Canada today to check out Vancouver. It was a pretty easy drive from Seattle. This was the first actual "road" part of my part of the road trip. Jessica let me take us out of town all the way over the border. The scenery was amazing. There were actually purple mountains (majesty) off in the distance. I got to drive through mountains and big beautiful trees. Jessica was nervous with me and my loose mouth at the Canadian border. While we waited in the car line, she quizzed me on what to say. We made it through all right but I didn't get a stamp in my new passport. I even asked at the border but the lady didn't seem to care. Canada didn't seem to be such a different place.
When we got in Vancouver, we parked near the bay. The funniest thing happened: right as we parked next to a meter, a man came up to us and gave us money for the meter, knowing we were from America (I guess by the license plate). Isn't that amazing? He just gave us $2 in Canadian money. I don't think that would happen in America or if it did it would be super rare. I'm still in owe of the Canadian generosity we encountered. We walked along the water and then took a small ferry across the water to Granville Island. We were a little nervous because we still had American money in our pockets but we got on anyways. When we told the man about the American money "will you take it" he said something about "par". I was confused so I pulled the money back. Then the man next to me explained it, taking the money on par was not counting the exchange rate so they would take it dollar for dollar meaning we would lose on the deal. We didn't care so we gave him the money.
Granville Island is just a big market place tourist/date spot. It's similar to Pike Place in Seattle but not as cool. I dunno. Jess decided to get some Canadian money and we learned that there are coins in Canada called a Loonie (a one dollar coin) and a Toonie (a coin worth two dollars). This made so much more sense because the man that gave us money for parking something about Loonies and Toonies. We walked around and then went to get a bite at a restaurant called The SandBar. The thing about Canadian restaurants is that they don't have outside patio seating in front of the restaurant, but instead they have rooftop patio seating which is awesome. We had a beautiful view. We played little games with each other trying to pick out the "real" Canadians or make character traits for Canadians. The food was great but the portions were too big. We stuffed ourselves at lunch so spent the next couple hours walking it off in the market. We saw a street performer doing magic. We took the ferry back over and checked out the downtown area.
Overall Canada was nice and surprisingly clean. It wasn't On Par with America though but maybe. It just seemed to be too perfect like some sort of planed utopia and I like a little dirt in my urban city. I will say that the Canadians seemed a lot more culturally accepting for example, there was a French radio station and I think an Indian station. Seattle was more my speed. We left Canada but got stuck at border patrol for what seemed like hours. I have to say that the color of the skies here are different than Texas. Washington and British Colombian sunsets seem to have this pastel pink-purple-blue pallet while Texas has a lot more orange-red-yellows, and even blueish greens. It was interesting to watch a different kind of sunset.
Tomorrow we're off to Portland, OR. I'll be a little sad to leave Michelle and Ed but I'm excited to move on with the trip. I'm really appreciative of their hospitality. Even as I write this, Michelle is doing my laundry for me, well sort of. I need to probably go upstairs and do some reading about Portland. Jess and I are thinking about finding some live music tomorrow. Apparently there's a lot to do in Portland. I'm pretty stoked.
Don't forget to check Jessica's side of the trip http://jess-roadtripadventure.blogspot.com/