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Published: July 28th 2017
Geo: 49.2605, -123.114
Today was mostly nondescript, apart, of course for the incredible scenery we drove through which is a given here. Mountains, lakes and rivers capped our adventure through the Rockies beautifully and we stopped off for the obligatory photo stops on the way back to Vancouver. We did stop for a rest stop Hope, BC, which is where Rambo was filmed and the boys on the trip took great delight in the fact that we stopped the minibus in the exact spot where Rambo was picked up by the sheriff. There was an opportunity to take a photo of yourself in one of those 'face in the hole' displays where you could make yourself look like Rambo. The boys practised their best angry faces until it was time to get back on the bus.
After driving through the last of the wonderful Canadian scenery, we pulled into Vancouver where we said goodbyes to half of the group. From the station drop-off point, we boarded the very efficient and modern Skytrain, me carrying the remains of last night's pizza to pass onto a homeless person, and then walked through the sunny Vancouver streets to our apartment home for three nights.
Air B'n'B is a godsend in cities like Vancouver, where basic hotels can run into the two hundred pounds a night mark. Ours was a fraction of that, although sometimes, when things go wrong, hotels are a better option. We managed to find the apartment building and locate the intercom number for the people whose apartment we were staying in. We buzzed the door and someone let us in. A man on reception, who we later learned to be Sam, told us to wait for them to come and meet us. So we waited, and waited, and waited. I'd emailed them previously to tell them we would be arriving at around 1.30pm, but we were a touch early. So we waited again. Eventually, Sam took us upstairs to the apartment, where, after much knocking, two bleary eyed girls opened the door. They told us they were staying in the apartment that night. At this point, our hearts sank. We had been so smug about our city centre apartment find, and now we were without accommodation. They told us that the owner was out of town and so they had an alternative number, which they called and the owner's friend came to meet us in the lobby.
Tired, desperate for a real bed, and more than a little concerned, we met her and she explained that there were two apartments in the same building. They hadn't replied to my email because the booking had been made in Stacey's name. They'd emailed Stacey a couple of times to check our arrival time but, because of the camping tour, she'd not checked her emails. Much laughter and apologising ensued on both parts, and we were soon checked into our plush city centre pad. They first thing we did was lay on the bed and enjoy actual comfort, before making full use of the swimming pool. After that, it was a hot shower with no need to for tokens of pushing buttons, or rogue shower curtains, or privacy issues. It was bliss!
Then we headed out into Gastown with five of the tour group to enjoy dinner and say our final goodbyes, before the luxury of a bed, real pillows and a late alarm for the morning. Perfection!
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