I have to make this quick, but even still, I'm blogging in another country! (Yes, Canada counts.) I don't know what I've been doing; Vancouver is only a four and a half hour drive away. I guess I've just wasted some trips to Boise and the Oregon Coast. I need to come back here for longer next time. I also need to stay in a different part of town; the trendy downtown monied people aren't quite my people. Even still, it's clean, the women are gorgeous (and often French!), and you can find any sort of delicious Asian food just about anywhere in town, at any time. I'll edit this later with more exposition.
As I was saying, Vancouver is awesome. I think my next trip will focus exclusively on Chinatown, Granville, and Commercial. Chinatown is self-explanatory; Granville is an artery that runs out of downtown. It's where all the sweet dive bars, hole in the wall restaurants, and hostels are. After some drinks my brothers and I had some dollar-a-slice pizza....apparently Canadians like potatoes, because I haven't seen potato pizza anywhere else. Sadly we couldn't spend much time on Commercial. Somewhere along that street is Little Italy. I will say, it's not the most scenic part of town; it's two or three Skytrain stops from downtown, and runs south from the bay, not along it. However, what little time I did spend there it was easy to tell how there would be a ton of cheaper shops/cafes/coffee places, etc. The sidewalks were overly wide to allow for table space. As I'm trying to remember highlights to write about, I'm finding all the highlights were food and drink. Is that bad? I didn't ride a tour bus, I didn't visit the Capilano Suspension Bridge, I didn't take a 'this movie was filmed here tour', I just ate a lot of food. I had delcious ginger and green onion beef hot pot, Nutella crepes, potato pizza, super delcious dim sum, etc etc. My only souvenir was/is some pancetta from the Lonsdale Quay Market that I am going to use for a red pepper/mozzerella/pancetta omlette or two tomorrow. (I actually had never had pancetta until last week - it's too salty to just eat, but I don't really want to take the time to make a sauce or something. Anyhoo.) Oh yeah! Probably the only non-food related 'highlight' was smoking Cuban cigars downtown with my brothers. To be honest, I've had better Dominicans in my lifetime. We got them mostly because we could. My middle brother and I got the 'cheapest' little Cohibas (still 20 bucks), while my youngest (19, impulsive, over-doer extrordanaire) got the Siglo 6. For reference, the little ones were the Siglo 1. After a late lunch/early dinner of fish and chips at Lonsdale Quay, and a last walk around that market, we rode the ferry back to downtown. We then split a pitcher at Steamworks Brewery, where said brother decides to order a whole second dinner of cheese tortellini. After our two beers a piece, we walk up to a downtown bench, and my brother smokes his cigar in roughly 45 minutes - the time it took my other brother and I to smoke the little ones. THEN we set out to walk/hike back up from the water to Robson Street to go for a late cocktail before going back to the hotel. (I'm sure you can see where this is going.) Bottom line: my youngest brother waits until we're about to be seated in a very nice bar and grill, in the lobby, in front of the beautiful blonde British hostess, to demonstrate the effects of overconsumption and violate a good 3 to 4 foot swath of stone entryway flooring. But as good brothers, we let him walk back to the hotel, and we stayed for drinks. Having left you with that meandering gross tale, here are some pictures of the excursion.
Downtown on Burrard
baked goods in Granville Market - that Eccles cake front and center was mine. (yes they are delicious.)