Wednesday, October 20, 2010

I'm back!

Whoa, seems like ages since I was here.  Where've I been?  Quite a few places really and had a great time in the process.

The aim was to visit the UK to see family and friends, but we took the opportunity to spend a bit of time in Vancouver on the way over.  I took quite a few shots of the various places we visited and hopefully as I sort through my efforts I'll be reminded of the great time we had on vacation.  I'll share some of my experiences and images on these pages and encourage you to make comments on what you see and read.

We left Auckland on a glorious spring day.  The cherry blossom was out, tuis were fighting over the nectar and the sky was a lovely even blue.  Not a day to be leaving I thought!  In fact, looking around the garden I couldn't help thinking this was an ideal place to go for a holiday rather than leave!  When you understand that our destination in the UK was Manchester, which has an unpleasant reputation for being cold, wet and miserable, you'll appreciate why I was wondering if leaving NZ was such a good idea.

The flight away from NZ wasn't the direct flight to Vancouver we'd hoped to use, but rather an Air New Zealand flight into San Francisco and then a United flight to Vancouver.  Not the best of experiences I have to say.  The flights were OK, but San Francisco was not the most pleasant.  After leaving the plane we queued for two and a half hours just to get photos and finger prints taken.  We then had to collect our bags even though we were in transit.  This was a HUGE difference to the experience at Singapore's Changi Airport on our return trip, but more about this later.  Needless to say when we arrived in Vancouver we were shattered. One flight was 12 hours, we then waited 7 in transit, a further 2 hours to get to Vancouver and then we had to drive to our accommodation.

Accommodation in Vancouver was superb.  If you're staying in Vancouver check this out ... Nature on Norwood.  We'd originally thought of staying in the city and using public transport, but in the end a hire car from Alamo and Nature on Norwood was more cost effective and significantly more versatile.

So there were were.  Exhausted, but in Canada and the weather was every bit as good as that in New Zealand :-)

Over the next few days we travelled around the Vancouver area and had a wonderful time, but I'll tell you more about that in the next post.  If you can't wait to see more images from my trip check out my Facebook album for a few more shots.

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