Landlords, loonys and loads more snowboard gear
05.12.2008 1 °C
A respectable wake up time of 6am greeted us on the morning of our first day in Calgary. With our pjs on and far to excited expressions for such a delicate hour in the morning, we scoured the hotel magazines and planned our day ahead.
A hearty Canadian breakfast of buttermilk pancakes and vegetable scrambled eggs and rosti later, our first foray into Calgary began. As we walked off to buy our Greyhound tickets to Kimberley we found our first patches of snow and jumped and played in the ones that were big enough for us to fit a whole foot in.
Calgary City Centre
Over Bow River
Apart from the 2 sensible tasks of getting the bus tickets and arranging our SIN (national insurance) numbers, our main agenda for the day was to check out all of the snowboard shops. First we headed to Kensington, the posh end of town, to discover that, despite it's London name, we were the only people wandering around the 10 shops to be found there. A few were snowboard shops though so we didn't mind.
Trying on skate shoes
Jumped on the C train into the centre of town to check out the Eaton and TD shopping centres. Good shops for people that wear nice clothes, but not much for us except weirdo spotting. If this was made into a national sport, Calgary would win hands down! Even on a normal day it didn't take us long to find Disney Girl. She was an odd specimen of person who walked with Snow White-esque tiptoeing steps and tragically comedic facial expressions, with gasps of suprise upon discovering an ice cream shop and the elevator. After riding up and down the lift a number of times (yes we did stand and watch) she met up with The Blue Mouthed Flasher. Whilst this may sound like a superhero name his only power was to wander around the shopping centre in little but a trench coat and basketball shoes, whilst eating some hideously synthetic sweet that caused his mouth, lips and a large portion of his lower face to turn blue.
With heightened spirits we headed to 17th street, the centre of snowboard shopping. And what a find it was, Mission had a vast range of hardwear (even for girls!!!) that we oggled over for sometime before both trying on new boots. For those of you who are not snowboard obsessed, the details of this shopping experience will not be half as exciting as they were for us, needless to say we spent over an hour in this one store and left it laden with boxes. The shop assistants were being true to Canadian form, they were helpful, friendly and gave us discounts and free stickers (they know their target market well, yeay stickers!!).
In the evening we went to dinner with our landlords in the suburbs. It was cool to meet all 8 of them, 5 Jacobs and 3 Simpsons (to be refered to as the Jacson 8 from now on). They were really welcoming and got us all excited talking about Kimberley and the house. They were also good enough to feed us, steaks the size of a VW beetle and an apple and caramel pie the size of a large tyre (I think we're still digesting them). After signing the rental contract and picking up the keys we returned home full bellied and ready for bed. Another day of adventure waiting for us tomorrow.