Goodbye Canada... Hello USA!!

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August 17th 2006
Published: August 24th 2006
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Vancouver to Seattle

Day 38.....

We spent our first full day in Vancouver stolling Robson street(the main shopping area) and the Waterfront, which is home to a stunning harbour. The sprawl of the city is surrounded by mountains and whichever way you look there is a view to behold - well almost! On our first night we managed to end up wandering into the 'dodgy' part of Vancouver: East Hastings Street! It was exactly what you'd expect to see in a Hollywood crime movie! Still, it was only a swift sprint to re-trace our steps and we were back on track for the evening!

Having been in the countryside for a month, adapting to city life was a little difficult at first. To ease ourselves back in, we spent our next day in the Vancouver Aquarium in beautiful Stanley park. Our afternoon was spent cruising along the streets of Vancouver, popping in & out of shops & enjoying another day of beautiful weather.

Our next two days were spent exploring more of what the city had to offer. We managed to squeeze ourselves into what was little bigger than a bathtub to get to see the market on Granville Island. Definitely worth a visit for the amazing array of foods on offer.... luckily we'd just had lunch! We also hired bikes to see the city on two wheels. The downtown area is surrounded by water with a cycle path around the edge, making for a great days cycling in the sun & enjoying the different views of the city from all of its angles.

We spent the rest of our time either walking through the streets or sunbathing in Stanley Park, easily the most stunning city park we've ever seen. We were even given a little taste of home when we settled down for afternoon tea & the chance to watch some Canadians play cricket! Not something we'd expected to see on this side of the Atlantic. That night we enjoyed a sunset across the city from atop the 50-storey Habour Centre Lookout, offering a full 360' view of the city.

Having barely unpacked, it was again time to move on. With a few hours to kill until our train left, we went in search of the best way to spend some spare time. Golf! After a month of Martin's forlorn looks at beautiful golf courses whizzing past, it was time to give in to a game of Pitch & Putt in Stanley Park! Angela had the luck of a beginner and got around an 18 hole, 54 par course with 1 par, 5 bogeys and final score of 101 vs Martin's much more advanced 68!

Bidding a sad farewell to Canada we boarded the train to Seattle (after being shouted at by a rude Customs Official because we hadn't filled in one of the millions of forms required to cross the border!) The trains over here put ours to shame! Reclining seats, acres of leg room & even in-carriage movies are supplied! We were also treated to another stunning sunset across the Pacific as we travelled south.

Our time in Seattle was somewhat blighted by Angela contracting a heavy cold on our first day in the US. However, not to be defeated, we were still able to see the majority of the city. The undoubted highlight was Pike Place Market, originally a fish market but now selling everything imaginable. The size of some of the fish is scary & made even more so when the fisherman began throwing them at each other, over the heads of startled onlookers! We were also captivated by the views from the observation deck of the Space Needle, the highest viewpoint in Seattle & a great way to view the skyline.

So now, after a week of city life, its back on the road & back into the wilderness. Next stop: Olympic National Park.

Hope all is well with you all...until next

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27th August 2006

Fellow Travellers
Hello, fellow travellers! We have just arrived back in Minneapolis after 5 days in Wisconsin on the South Shore of Lake Superior - 'the shining big sea water' - Hiawatha. Enjoyed buckets and spades on the beach, exploring the tiny town of Bayfield and boating round the Apostle Islands. Max has been introduced to MacDonalds and our intrepid sailor Marianne took the helm on a sailing boat this morning. Sorry our paths won't cross in the next few weeks but enjoy the rest of your expedition. Take care. Love to you both.

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