I hadn’t taken much notice of the jokes about rain in Lonely Planet, but today it wasn’t funny! After a wet day yesterday we were pleased that it seemed to have dried up this morning. However after a grey 40, or so, minute journey into Vancouver the greyness began to leak. Our first glimpse of the city that promised so much, was dismal and uninspiring. The skyline we had heard such a lot about lurked amongst the drab mist. But trying to be undeterred we set of to explore. The steam clock in Yaletown was quirky, Chinatown was disappointing, Canada Place somewhat bedraggled. We were shocked at the number of down and outs though none bothered us, there were more than we have seen in all our time over here. We had only walked one block from the main tourist drag on our way to Chinatown and the street was lined with many less fortunate than us.
Cranes, sidewalks and whole streets closed, construction workers, puddles, pile drivers, major holes in the ground, all made for a less than inviting impression, it’ll be nice when it’s finished. Sadly the week didn’t improve so after 5 days (and nights!) of rain we were rather subdued. As we couldn’t do any jobs outside we were limited to sorting out inside, it did mean that all the necessary back up discs were written and the task of packing begun. Unlike native RV’rs we don’t have a home to unload all our stuff into…this is our home, so most of it will stay put. We had a fruitless search for a top up card for Malc’s mobile, having run out of minutes half way through a conversation to the people who were trying to send us our new registration plates, but that’s another story. We can’t buy minutes on line with a UK credit card, we can’t buy minutes anywhere in Canada because T Mobile doesn’t exist here. So we’re kind of stuck, our Internet connection is slow so skype calls are hopeless. Maybe a US card would be useful next time round. The plates did eventually arrive, so now Bree is showing that she is registered in Montana – Big sky country – though I must admit I’d rather have the NH plate, ‘cos that’s where our adventure began.
Friday night, we took a stroll along a waterlogged prom and our spirits lifted as the heavy cloud overcoat slowly began to lift its tail…only a fraction but enough to reveal a fiery sunset. Roll on tomorrow. Yes Saturday dawned bright and sunny, not a cloud in the sky so it’s open all the windows, sort out the bins, unroll the awning for a final clean before we leave. What a difference a day makes! Today, Sunday, unable to keep away and tired of chores, we went down to the sea once again. We were rewarded with a kite festival on the shore, a multitude of windborne creatures held aloft by the gentle breeze. With eyes drawn heavenward by colours painted on the sky, we watched them dance, dazzling and flickering, held prisoner by web thin strands. Some held simply by rocks, some by child or grown up, all faces turned upwards as if mesmerized. We saw our pair of eagles again, today content to sit high in a tree and watch the strange “birds” that had invaded their space. If you look carefully in one of our photos you can see the snow clad mountains in the background, its said Vancouver is unique because you can literally ski and sail in the same day!