Welcome back guys! We left last with Nicola and I leaving Vancouver and travelling to Victoria. Read Here if you haven’t already.
Days 5-7 Victoria
It was a pretty complication free drive, apart from the never ending rain, and making a last minute dash to catch the ferry to the Island, standard Laura & Nicola lastminute.com.
At this point we have had 3 days of constant rain. Rain that just. Did. Not. Stop. As many people like to remind me ‘oh you should be used to it as you are from the UK’. Firstly, this was the reason why I left the UK and secondly, no, it does not rain as consistently as it does over here on the West Coast, and Victoria was no different on the day we arrived.
So I have not stayed in many hotels in my time in Canada, I have either sofa surfed or hosteled by way around. What completely took me (and Nicola) by surprise was upon check in, we not only pay for the whole stay up front, we then have to pay a security deposit of $300. By credit card of course.
I hand my credit card over; already knowing full well it’s going to be declined. (New to the country, very, very low allowance). Nicola is looking at me sheepishly like I should know how to deal with the situation. I don’t.
Anyway long story short, after several more dances around with my card, and a hike in the rain to the bank, we were finally allowed to check in. To which we dumped our bags down and marched back out to the liquor store to get some well-deserved beer.
While staring aimlessly at the beer fridge trying to find something my fussy mate would actually drink, I step back and almost take out a very expensive wine display. I had to grab the bottles to stop them falling. I then did this again 2 minutes later, I was then told to go and wait by the cashier, before I bring the store to oblivion.
Walking back to the hotel with beer in hand, one of the cans drops out of my 6 pack, and crashes to the floor and bursts in the middle, spraying beer everywhere and rolling down the street. When I finally grab hold of it, part of me is thinking ‘shall I drink this?’ Thinking that’s a tad inappropriate, I regrettably throw it in the bin.
The next day we go and do touristy things, and NO RAIN!!!
Firstly make our way to The Empress. Which is really just a big posh hotel, which does fancy afternoon tea we cannot afford, but does not stop us going inside and taking a look and looking completely out of place.
We then go to The Miniature Museum. Which was absolutely bloody amazing, Nicola and I loved it. We were told most people usually spend around 45 minutes in the museum. 2 hours later, we walked out. Best 16 bucks I have ever spent. (I am not sure what this says about the pair of us)
No trip would be complete without Nicola getting drunk and stupid. We went to the delightful Phillips Brewery, made our way through some tasty flights, spilt a few pints, (guess who that was) and well I will leave the rest up to your imagination.
What’s Mile Zero? It is the end of the famous Transcanada Highway, which starts in Nova Scotia and goes all the way across Canada, finishing in Victoria, BC. It is the longest national highway in the world!
Most people do really awesome things, like run the whole way, or cycle the whole highway. We just drove from one side of BC to the other!! But to give you an idea, you can fit all of UK & Ireland into BC and still have room!
Don’t ask why it is called Mile Zero when everything is in kilometres, and don’t get me started on pints that are clearly not the size of a UK pint.
Day 7-10 Seattle
After recovering from a pretty hefty hangover, we make our way on to Seattle. Don’t worry I have my passport; Nicola took good care of it after I left it at home the first time.
So we are sitting in the queue to cross the border, all very patriotic with the big monuments, and Google shouting at you ‘Welcome to the United States’ as we cross the imaginary border. Now as we get closer to the Border Agent, we are getting more and more nervous. Both thinking, should we have filled in some more forms, our passport is enough right? (Yes we both had done our ESTA).
We are then at the Border Agent and I hand over our passports. She looks at me, ‘Where are you from?’ Me: ‘Invermere’ I suppose it would have been more believable if I hadn’t just handed over my GB passport.
Questions continue, both of us just forgetting everything about ourselves, ‘What’s your date of birth?’ ‘Errrrrr….’ ‘What’s your name?’ ‘Errmmmmmm’
Next thing we know, there is a big yellow form slapped on my windscreen and we are told to go and park up, as we have to have a secondary inspection. Well this is it; we are going to be barred from the country.
Our finger prints were scanned, more interrogating questions, and then paying $16 USD for the pleasure.
So what touristy stuff did we get up to?
The first Starbucks. Not to burst your bubble, but this isn’t actually the first Starbucks, because the original one moved to the building it is in now, thus just being the longest running Starbucks. We went to take a peek, stood in the queue (outside) to get a coffee then realised we both don’t actually like Starbucks coffee, so we left.
The Underground City. This was actually pretty fascinating. Seattle was originally built on lower beach land, and due to a fire that burnt down half the city; they decided to build a few storeys up. Which left a whole underground world that you can go and tour around. Just the kinda nerd stuff we are both into.
The Gum Wall. A wall full of gum. I don’t need to go in more detail.
The Space Needle. A revolving floor. A clumsy persons worst nightmare. No matter what city I am in, I love to watch the city life go by from a great height. (London is still by far the best). We sat down at the window and I decided to do a time lapse as we revolved round. I put my phone on the ledge to capture us going round, then just watched my phone stay there, while we carried on revolving round. It took me longer than it should have done that it’s just the floor moving and not the window ledges.
Crossing the border back into Canada
I forgot my work permit. I was lucky to be allowed back in. I keep my work permit pretty much under lock and key, and if you have read this post, you will understand why.
Make you check out my other clumsy and travel stories on the links below.