Friday, May 25, 2007

Radio advertising

We've never really spoken about this before, but the radio adverts in Saskatchewan were, for the most part, awful. We couldn't work out if it was because the space was cheap, or the producers didn't care, or if Mom and Pop stores could all afford massive slots. I'll give you a brief example, from memory.

I've improved the script somewhat, so imagine a very bad version of this:
"Hey, Bill, do you want to go to the RV shop?"
"No, Mary, my wife, I like our current RV just fine, thank you."
"But Bill, they have really big ones, and their prices are so low I simply can't believe it's true".
"Okay, I'll come have a look".
It's usually around now that I turn off the radio, stop the car and do some shopping. Maybe I'll have a latte. I return to the car...
"So you see, Bill, their prices really are good, and this new RV is so easy to drive."
"You're right, Mary. But I'll miss my old one."
"Ha. Ha. Ha. You're so funny, Bill."

And you know what, I never felt the urge to buy an RV. Maybe I just don't have wheat in my veins.

That is all.

Thursday, May 24, 2007

Two of Two

As I mentioned before, silly-little Claire hasn't left me yet. In fact, she seems less likely to leave me than ever. I thought that and the fact that she hasn't left for 5 years was cause for a celebration. I booked us into The Adara hotel in Whistler, bought a couple of bottles of wine, and checked the map.

Now, one would be forgiven for thinking the 121km from Vancouver would take about 45 minutes to cover at SA speeds on SA roads. Here we were not allowed either. Firstly, they are upgrading the roads. Either that, or the huge earth-moving machines are a cunning way of distracting you from the beautiful coastal scenery. I did discover that I should probably keep my eye off BOTH, however, since the general flow kept dipping from 90km/h down to 3.25km/h. Around a blind corner. In the mist. And on icy roads. Okay, those last two are a lie. But it would have been SUPER bad if it was misty and icy.

But we arrived safely and checked in. We told the valet to park our beetle next to a Porsche. He did.

Looking fabulous, above, we dined and then slept, waking to the beautiful, and somewhat unexpected sight of Whistler mountain capped in snow. I'm not talking berg-snow-capped. This was the top half of the mountain! WHITE! And the lifts were running?! ITS MAY!!? End of, no less. The skiers and snow-boarders confirmed it. Whistler is STILL offering skiing.

Now, its impossible to capture the real feel of a place, but here are some "general whistler" pics to help a little:

That's a holiday inn in the Background. Strict building code, anyone?

See - that guy has a snow-board in his hands. And boarding boots that make him walk funny.

The little town was bustling. NowIt turns out that we arrived on the weekend of the whistler mountain bike park's grand season opening. Its a fully lift-serviced downhill park for getting muddy beyond compare.

We were tempted, but we only had white shoes and jeans - NOT ideal. So we slummed it and went running in the AWFUL golf course with DREADFUL meandering running paths and NOTHING pretty to look at AT ALL!!

And look, a little bit of the Prairies has found its way to the mountains. Well done, little barn. *salute*

So, we basically chilled and did whatever took our fancy each of the three days. Ate and drank and were merry. Claire got a little dizzy, I think, because she agreed to play GOLF with me. Now, those of you who know Claire well, know what a departure that is for her. I did have to compromise on the "club" selection though. We bought a putter and an iron and headed to "powerline ridge" course. Oh, did I mention it's frisbee Golf? And I was serious about the "putter" and "iron". Here is Claire teeing off with her putter!

And putting with her putter. That Chained contraption is the hole. Looks like she's curling it in.

We did decide, on the last day, that we NEEDED to be involved in the mountain biking. Something that didn't require body-armor though. We rented a pair of yummy cross-country bikes and headed into the forests. It was sublime.
We messed around on the beginner course for a little while:

The view was good. Of the scenery too.

But we decided that we are FAR too experienced to be mucking about on THAT! Here's Claire, forging up the Intermediate course. In case you're wondering, there is no more "path" than you can see here. Boulder hopping up the slope is pretty much the idea.

Hey, bru, you're glowing, right!

And all too soon, it was over. Like this post.

That is all.

Tuesday, May 22, 2007

First of two

So, I have plenty to say, but I feel as though perhaps a little update is in order. I am drinking a LOVELY Cab Sav from Pirramima, to celebrate 5 years with a very very stupid woman (in one way, and one way only - she continues to stay with ME?! You've all met her? What is she thinking? Don't tell her!!!). But, as the title suggests, I'll get to that in a minute.

So, what's happened since your last update. Let's backup (dlodlodlodlo {that was flash-back music} dlodlodlo). We moved to Abbotsford. It's in BC. BC is nice. These are all known facts. We DID have a few hiccups. Lets recap those:

BC wouldn't license Claire because they took something the lovely Saskatchewan folks said the wrong way (gotta love it when communication fails).
Claire said "But I ROCK!!!".
They said "Prove it".
Claire did. (As if there was any doubt).

It was a 3month-no income ordeal with no guarantees and a WHOLE LOT of expenses. "prove it" cost several thousand. No, not Rands, silly deluded folks. AAAAAAaaanyway, I digress. We did it. (My main roll was keeping trouble away from my lovely. She had her head in books, I did floors and dinner and windows. Well, except the windows and dinners (Claire cheffed it up like a mad woman - I put on like 20kg). And roomba did the floors. We love you roomba).

So, we moved. Well, the move happened before the "prove it" exams, and we actually spend the first week in Vancouver to be closer to the exam venue. We'd booked the mover, and found a flat and packed the car. 40 minutes AFTER we were supposed to leave, the mover phoned and said .... oh wait... Hang on, i've been through this. What I HAVEN'T said is that they arrived a full 5 days AFTER they said they would. And while hauling the stuff up the stairs, the driver felt it was necessary to tell me he had a testicle the size of a grape-fruit. I kid you not. Nice!

Since then, things have settled a little. We don't really feel like we live where we live. Its in a bowl of mountains, surrounded by trees and full of pimped out cars. So that last one was a surprise. Abbotsford has a delightful Benoni/Boxburg feel. I bet that if I want some "fly mods" done to the beetle it wouldn't take a moment. I'm thinking of some flames. It will still take some convincing to get Claire on board.

Right, I think that will do it for the moment. I will update you all on Whistler and it's awesomeness next time. Until then, some photos.

Yes, those are all South African degrees. How many canadian's get this one? I laughed like a mad-man!

Where we will live someday!

Me. And a little flower.
Robson Street

That is all.

Tuesday, May 08, 2007

Hello from Abbotsford

Hello! Phew, we are here, I am working, we have a place to live with furniture, the sun shone today. Life is good. I am so happy to finally have things going and to be able to catch my breathe a little. The last few months have not been fun. Abbotsford is a big city to us now, about 160000 people I think. We have to drive 10km to gym (but its a nice one) and work isn't just around the corner. There are lots more people our age too. Haven't made any friends yet, but I hope we do soon. I'll start recruiting patients.

There are so many flowers here and the whole of BC is just crazy beautiful. I know Andrew will be putting up some photos soon.

Oh, I've entered to run the Vancouver half marathon in June. My first. I am a small time jogger, but have decided to kick it up a notch, so any tips or advise from people who've done one before would be greatly appreciated. For those of you who've run comrades etc, I know this little run is lame, but help! Oh, and anyone considering buying that nike+ gadget( for running, do. Super cool.

K. Bye.