Day 8 - in transit Melbourne/UBC

The day that lasted 36 hrs !

I woke up at 6am on Thurs 5 June in Melbourne Australia, and went to sleep at 11.30pm on the same day in Vancouver British Columbia about 36hrs later! Completely mindboggling and not to good for webblogging either :)

Got a taxi from St Kilda - I was going to go to Spencer St Station to get the Skybus, but the taxidriver did a deal and took me straight to the airport for what I would have paid for the bus. I had to listen to his life story in return though - he arrived in Melbourne 18 yrs ago with his wife from Poland with $20, and now owns a house, with kids in private schools, and travels overseas every year! Although he is an industrial chemist by training he prefers to drive a cab and meet interesting people while his wife earns the major dollars.

Uneventful flight to LA - but a long 14hrs! Didn't sleep much - finished reading Capra and started the new Tom Robbins (Villa Incognito). Although there were inseat movies I had seen Chicago and The Pianist, so watched How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days - I mean can you imagine ME watching a soppy Hollywood love story (was entertaining in places tho' - you guys will enjoy I guess). Then a 2HR WAIT in a customs queue at LA - I mean, I was in transit to Canada - cant understand why the Americans have to subject transiting passengers to their bureaucracy! So ended up just making the plane to Vancouver.

A clear day and flight up north over the Rockies - snow still on the mountain tops. Then into British Columbia over Seattle and first views of Vancouver. A really beautiful setting for a city - on the water with majestic snow-tipped mountains in the background. Caught 3 buses to get to UBC - the cheap option since it was only $3 (Canadian, which is about 5 NZ) compared to 30 for a cab, or 40 for a limo! So I was totally exhausted by the time I checked in at my basic but comfortable room in the Gage Towers at the student accommodation, with a stunning view over the sea. Wandered round the campus, founf a path through an old forest and came out on the beach - 7pm but daylight saving and midsummer - was like dropping in to the 60s - clothing optional, people playing guitars, frisbees, just hanging out (especially some older men who were literally letting it all hang out!) , cool, laidback. A quite trippy scene with my lack of sleep but just beautiful to sit there, watch the sunset, groove into Canada ....

Have 2 meetings tomorrow, and then a free weekend to explore this wonderful city.

Posted: Thu - June 5, 2003 at 10:15 AM   Stan's Travel Blog    

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