Monday, August 25, 2008

Vancouver Island Adventure Day 1

Starting out in Surrey, BC we did our shopping at Art Knapp's and then headed to the Tsawwassen Ferry Terminal to catch our Ferry. We arrived in plenty of time. We hung out, went shopping, had lunch and transferred our luggage that we need while on the island to Dave and Laura's Murano as we would be parking our car in Nanaimo at my Aunt's parking lot. The majority of the time on the island we were in one vehicle. We were on the last crossing of the Ferry as the new one would be taking over it's route. Something we wished we knew ahead of time. The Ferry crossing was fairly uneventful we didn't see much in the way of wildlife, excluding sea gulls. We found out our Ferry was going to be delayed in docking and unloading. Not good. Jon and Dave had tickets on the train and we couldn't afford the extra hour that we were delayed on getting off the ferry. We had to wait until the new Ferry loaded and took off before our Ferry could even get into the terminal in order to unload. With that news we were trying to find out if the train was running on schedule. If it was late it would be a good thing. No luck. Michaelea and Laura had planned a girls day out visiting gardens, driving along the coast, and shopping. This threw a wrench in the gears. So we dropped the car off and ended up watching a boat being taken out of the water. After about an hour it was mostly out, but we decided to hit the road. We drove to the Gold Stream Campground just outside of Victoria. There we set up camp and enjoyed the rest of the evening as we had an early start the next morning.

Chilliwack Interchange: The Show

Chilliwack Interchange was a weekend long Model Railway Convention in Chilliwack, BC. Most of us headed out on Wednesday to arrive late on Thursday and setup on Friday. There was a small amount of Calgary Free-mo Members there and we all had a great time. During the convention Jon was busy at the layout so Laura and I went exploring on Saturday and Sunday. We got our nails done and did some shopping.

We also went to the Blue Heron Nature Reserve. It was a beautiful park with plenty of plants and animals. We saw a bunny and ducks, blue herons and cedar waxwings. We also saw giant slugs, or at least that's what they looked like. It was a great way to spend the afternoon.

On Sunday I had one of my migraines and headed to the hotel to take a nap. By the time I was feeling better the group was half way through tear down and pack up, so Jon let me stay at the hotel until they were heading for dinner. We went to Mr. Mikes Steakhouse for dinner. It was really good. I wish we had one here, or maybe not.

After dinner we all headed back to our hotels and bright and early Monday morning they headed back to Calgary, while Jon and I headed to Surrey, BC to meet Dave and Laura at Art Knapp's Garden Centre. The Surrey location is also the only one to sell G-Scale Model railway stuff. Jon and I are putting one in our back yard and Dave and Laura haven't decided where theirs is going yet. There are actually quite a few of us HO-Scalers that also have G-Scale in our yards.

Misson BC

I picked Jon up in Mission BC after he got back from Vancouver. We headed over to the VIA station if that's what you can call it, as there is no building just a platform and an electrical box. We could have spent the entire evening there if we stayed to take pictures of all the trains coming through. There were lots. We stayed for three of them including the 'Canadian'. After we were done railfanning we headed back to Chilliwack in search of dinner.

Sunday, August 24, 2008

Chilliwack: Side Trip to Vancouver and Back

On Friday Jon caught the Greyhound bus to Vancouver to ride the West Coast Express commuter train back to Mission BC where I picked him up.

Along the way and the Quintet Tunnels

We stopped a lot along the way to Chilliwack, BC Including the Quintet Tunnels.

Chilliwack Interchange Part 3: Notch Hill

We stopped at Notch Hill just outside Salmon Arm, BC and railfanned. We just missed a train when we arrived and just as we were driving away another one was coming. We quickly turned around and caught it on camera.

Chilliwack Interchange Part 2: To Salmon Arm

It took an amazing 13 hours to go to Salmon Arm. We stopped a lot along to way to rail fan.

Chilliwack Interchange Part 1: The Packing of the Trailer

On June 7th all of those who were having their modules transported with group transport headed out to Ron's place to load up the car hauler he had borrowed. We also had a BBQ. It was a good thing we were able to park the trailer in his large garage as there was a major rain storm that day.

Michaelea's Birthday

For my 33rd Birthday I hosted a games night at our house. There were about 15 people there. We had burgers for dinner and played games until 11pm. The day started at 3:30pm. It was loads of fun and I think I will throw myself another party next year.

May Long Weekend at Bloomin Inn

Suzanne and I went to the Bloomin Inn in Pincher Creek for May long weekend and we made some new friends. We had so much fun and laughed the whole weekend.

A BBQ Story

Once upon a time last December a wicked wind storm raced through the city of Calgary, upsetting trees, power lines, lawn chairs and Michaelea's Barbeque. This upset Michaelea very much as it is her favorite way to cook all through the year. She was very sad and going into withdrawls.

... A time later, about 5 months...

The magical day finally came. The income tax cheques were deposited into the bank. Later that week Jon and Michaelea made a lunch date to go to the Barbeque Doctor to look at re-furbished Weber BBQ's when there were only two in the showroom and neither one was ready to take home. A little saddened by this, they didn't give up the search. Later that day, after work to be exact, they headed to Barbecues Galore not knowing what was in store for them there. They got there about 10 minutes before they closed and a nice sales associate named Paul came over to see if he could help them.

They told him what they were looking for and the uses and price range and he recommended the Weber Genesis CEP 320 with the side burner. Now Michaelea and Jon weren't sure they wanted the side burner since most of the time they bbq at home where they can use the stove. Michaelea and Jon decided to leave the store and possibly come back on Saturday.

Saturday morning they went to their Chiropractor appointment in Airdrie and then went to Michaelea's bosses place to see their new PC Brand BBQ as well as play on the Nintendo Wii. After getting tired out playing the boxing game they headed back to Barbecues Galore to talk with Paul. It was much busier than the evening before, and Paul was with another customer. They asked him to find them when he was finished. It wasn't long and they asked a few more questions about the Weber and then said, Okay we'll take it. There was a long waiting time to get one assembled, so they took it home and assembled it themselves. It took about two hours to put together.

After assembly was complete they made a few phone calls to invite some people over for dinner to test out the barbeque. Michaelea ran out to Safeway and picked up the steaks while Jon cleaned up the dining room.

Julia and Cameron came over and enjoyed the steak, baked potatoes, caesar salad, and steamed carrots. After a little while digesting Julia served the Tall Strawberry Shortcake that she picked up on the way over.

They all ate happily ever after.

The End... or should I say just the beginning...