Friday, May 4, 2012

A Delorean, bionics, Ice creams and Ukuleles.

Its been a reasonably quiet week back in Winnipeg, but heres what I have been doing since I left the hostel in Calgary last week.....

I left Calgary at about 10 am on the Thursday. The bus to the airport left from right underneath the Calgary tower, which looked really spooky covered in mist and cloud. As I got onto the bus I picked up a local free paper and started to read it. The first story I saw was that of the car from Back to The Future – The Famous DeLorean, was in Calgary for a Comic con expo. I would love to see it and was a little disappointed that I hadn’t known about this earlier, but on reading the small article, I saw that the car was parked outside the Marriott hotel – across the bus stop where I was sitting. I turned to my left and there, 20 metres away, was the DeLorean, in full view, exactly where it was positioned in the photo in the paper. I took a couple of quick shots before the bus moved off and was really happy to see it!

The photo in the paper

What I saw ehen I turned my head....

At the airport, I had a wander around, taking in the weird things like a small spinning airplane ride that you can wind up with a big key and also a stuffed, howling wolf sat outside one of the duty free shops. We got onto the plane on time and then had to wait 40 minutes for 4 passengers that were landing on a connecting flight. I have never heard of a company that will delay 150 passengers, so that 4 others can catch their flight. It got even worse when we arrived 2 hours later in Winnipeg as we were told to let off a couple from our flight, as their next flight was waiting for them! So another 150 annoyed and late passengers were waiting. If we had left on time they would have made their flight and 300 people would have been on time, while only 4 would have been late.  It seems a bit strange to me, as having flown now 201 times, I have never had a flight wait for me!

Anyway, I made it back ok and when I got home Buff had left me some dinner while she was at Choir. Tomorrow, she is having laser eye surgery, so I downloaded an eye chart and stuck it onto the wall so that she can test her new bionic eyes whenever she is ready.

Friday was a long day. I went into town and sat with Buffy for her pre-op mess around. We sat around waiting and I tried on a few pairs of glasses left by previous people who have had the operation.  A couple of eye tests later and Buff was ready to go into surgery. So first I went up to the 30the floor of the building to see the view before going into town and discovered that the Elephant and Castle will be showing the United v City game on Monday – bonus – unfortunately the bloke that told me is a City fan! I also wandered across the YMCA gym, which is really well equipped with pool, gym and steam room. I spoke to one of the bosses there and he gave me two free passes to use the gym whenever I like – so I will be going there in the few week or so, to give it a go.

In the airport!!

Getting checked pout for bionic eyes




Hmmmm, ok, cool.....

By the time I went back to the laser eye place, she was finished and waiting to get a final check up before leaving. She has these funky black sunglasses that she has to wear and eye drops that weirdly give a funny taste in her throat. It’s all good so far though and she seems happy with it.
The rest of Friday was spent at home with Buffy sat in her big sunglasses listening to podcasts on her mp3 and me doing stuff on the internet while making dinner.

Saturday morning and after she had been to get her 1 day check up , I met up with Buffter and we had a really nice big breakfast in Stella’s – the cool cafe just around the corner. It was a lovely day and so after a lazy morning we went out for a walk – about 3 miles out to an ice cream parlour called BDI – Bridge Drive Inn. Obviously by the name, the parlour is right next to an old iron bridge crossing the river, where it is traditional to get your ice cream and walk across the bridge whilst eating it, which we did. Buffter had hot fudge sundae and I had a Parfait, which has all sorts of stuff like strawberries, pineapple and various types of ice cream and cream in it – all for $5 - Lovely. We were even stalked by a friendly squirrel whilst we finished our desserts sat by the river on log. It kept coming closer and then running off before coming back for another look at us and our food. We finally finished the massive desserts and wandered back home, passing a few strange gardens on the way, including one with hundreds of gnomes and other strange statue type things in.
It was a typical Saturday night in though, watching the usual Saturday night TV in the internet.

Winnipeg from....

...the 30th floor

A parfait!!! Nice.

Hungry squirrel

Sunday was a stranger day. We were picked up by Buffy’s Aunt Meg and Uncle Brent, whose house we had passed by on our day trip into the prairies in the BMW a couple of weeks back. Brent has just learnt to play the Ukulele and as such meets up with a gang of other Ukulele players in The Kings Head pub, for a type of jamming and fun session every couple of weeks. So we went to the pub and I sat and watched as a mixed bunch of oldie and youngsters played loads of cool tunes on their Ukes. They even played songs like, ’Should I stay or should I go now’, by the Clash and ‘Always look on the bright side of life’ as I sat, took photos and watched the Ice Hockey on TV too.
It was a fun afternoon and really great to meet some more new people. 

Street sign - levitatiing over bikes allowed!!

The Sunday Ukulele club

Monday – I shall mention only that I went to a pub to watch some sporting event on the television. I had Boddingtons beer and then came home. In the evening, Buffter had a Choir practice and beforehand Joel came around for dinner. I had made Fish Fingers and smileys, so we all had massive fish finger butties with loads of ketchup and cheese. It’s nice eating like a kid every now and then. Afterwards they went to Choir and as they  were all heading down to Boston Pizza afterwards they picked me up and we enjoyed a good hour with another drink and a good evening chatting.

Tuesday was a quiet day but back to The Elephant and Castle at night - for quiz night. It’s not much different from quiz nights in UK and was a good laugh, helped by a few more Boddies. We didn’t win, but didn’t do too badly either, so we made a promise to ourselves to come back again sometime in the next few weeks.


I had decided to make myself a little bit of home on Wednesday and so I spent the afternoon cooking a bog beef stew and dumplings. It was going really well, when my phone rang at about 2pm. It was a woman from ‘Merrill shoes’, who I had been emailing about the fact that the heels on my shoes had worn almost right through. She was nice enough and after asking for proof or purchase or even a credit card statement for the shoes, which I had neither as I paid cash for them in Sam Francisco back in November, she finally agreed to replace my shoes. But I had to send them away and it would tale about 2 weeks to get the new pair, as long as they found that mine were faulty on inspection. So I quickly put the stew on to simmer and packed my old shoes up in a Kellogg’s cereal box, before wrapping that up in two brown paper bags from the liquor mart and finally wandered the mile or so to UPS parcel service, where I just made it for the parcel to get gone that evening. I hope the new replacement shoes will be back before I head off on the road again in two weeks......

The stew went down a treat as me, Buffy and Joel all piled in before they had to get off for Choir practice. The next day was cold and rainy, so I took advantage of the weather and took myself out for a good run in the morning before spending the afternoon planning my next trip. Things have changed a little and I will now be going east from Toronto instead of South and West. But you will find out more about that when I go.


Fucked shoes

more of them

Sending them away

In the evening me and Buff went along to a little local cinema where there was a documentary on. The theatre seats only about 50 people and the movie was interesting enough and we enjoyed it – apart from the woman behind us who insisted on eating her popcorn open mouthed and one piece at a time. I have never heard anyone eat so loud as she did .I tried to make her stop by slurping my coke, but accidentally choked on it and spent 5 minutes coughing really loudly myself – haahaa.  A fun night out though and different from the usual Hollywood style films you see at the cinema. 

Cmon Winnipeg, lets have some standards when...

...building statues. These women are huge compared to the others!!

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