Sunday, September 5, 2010

Day 1- Success

Word of the day; Coulee; a small valley, or a low-lying area

Good morning everyone! It’s 11:30 Calgary time, so 1:30 Ontario time. So.. morning for me I guess. I’m really adjusting to the the two hour difference, probably because I was up for 24 hours when we flew in on Friday night, so I slept like a baby. I still have no wifi connection so I’m just going to write blogs and post them as soon as I can. It’s Sunday, meaning day 2 of our trip out here. I’m really loving it. It’s amazing how different it is from Toronto though. Their “downtown” is the size of one or two neigbourhoods of our downtown. I would say the Financial district, and Club district. That’s what Calgary’s downtown is made of... maybe a little bit of Yorkville as well, because all the major hotels are on one strip (easy for spotting celebrities as they visit!) 

Yesterday we didn’t do too much. We got off to a slow start, then went on a quick tour of the downtown, and went to Innisfail to pick up my granny. We ate dinner there, and met some of her other senior friends (who were adorable), and then continued back south to Calgary. I learned a lot yesterday on the drive alone. For example: Calgary is primarily flat, like the Prairies, with the exception of the mountains of course, so while you’re driving, it’ll all be flat, and then all of a sudden you’ll be in a little divot; this is called a coulie (I’ll have to double check the spelling on that.) Anyway, a coulee is just a little part of the land that dips down, and back up again (think tiiiiinnyyy valley). I also learned that Alberta is known for their canola crops. Now, the coolest thing about canola is that it is a BERRY! There is a plant that flowers, and when the flower is gone, all that is left is a little black berry which produces the canola oil. I feel like many of you guys already knew that, so don’t laugh too hard at my obliviousness to crops. I can’t seem to remember what else I learned which kind of sucks, something about oil and gas. OH, I remember! There is oil everywhere. Along the highway, about every 5 minutes you’ll see a pumping station that I originally thought was for hydro... turns out, they pump oil in to a main station somewhere else in Alberta. COOL EH?

So, after I learned all of this fun information, we stopped at a place that is completely familiar to me... I would say it’s like a second home. Crossiron Mills. People back home, you may resonate with this a bit... Crossiron MILLS. Similiarly to, Vaughan MILLS. Yep, a giant mall, filled with 200 stores including a Coach outlet. So of course, I bought a cute new black leather swing pack, and a bright coral wristlet. Both adorable. My mom bought a black leather purse, a black swing pack, a wristlet, and she bought me a passport holder, and my aunt (in Ontario) a new wristlet. My aunt (in Alberta), spent 1500 dollars.. well that’s not true. That’s what she would have spent had we not been at an outlet. Her total came to 400 dollars... 900 dollars in savings. Can you even believe that? Finally I went to American Eagle and French Connection, where I bought a new belt, a sweatshirt, a pair of jeans and a pair of green cargo pants (suuuper cute). The most amazing thing is: only 5% tax. Not 13% like Ontario, but FIVE PERCENT. It’s unreal. You save so much on tax, causing you to buy way more. 

I have to wrap this up quickly we are just about to head out, so forgive me for rushing through this last bit. We went to the casino (there are 7 in Calgary alone) for my first time ever... it’s just not fun. I didn’t win anything, and I had to pay for a drink. Annoying. My aunt however won about 3000 dollars. OF SLOT MACHINES! I couldn’t believe my eyes. So I was a bit sad, and tired. We came home around 1:30 Calgary time (3:30 Ontario time) and I stayed up watching Full House (of course) until about 5 am Ontario time. Don’t know how I did it, or why.. but I did. 

SO TODAY: it’s raining quite a bit, so we’re skipping the Calgary Tower but we’re going to the Science Center (BODY WORLDS is there, I missed it in Toronto), the Saddle Dome, some more shopping (for the wedding on Tuesday) and a few other touristy things. 

I’ll check back in later today hopefully. On a final note, although it’s pretty redneck out here, I’ve seen toooo many good looking guys. Sadly, no pictures yet, so I’ll work on that today.

Until next time, 

Mr. Famous, xo

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