What a Hassle!

The trip to Vancouver was nice. The children were able to see all of their cousins and enjoyed playing with some of them nearly every one of the twelve days we were there. We also took them on the SkyTrain and the SeaBus and took them on a quick tour of Granville Street downtown and Pacific Centre this past Monday. They really enjoyed it. They installed a second SkyTrain line since we lived there and we went on it to get back home Monday. It?¢‚Ǩ‚Ñ¢s hard to believe Brentwood Mall and Lougheed all have SkyTrain Stations now. Surrey Place Mall has been radically changed?¢‚Ǩ‚Äùit doesn?¢‚Ǩ‚Ñ¢t even look the same anymore. There?¢‚Ǩ‚Ñ¢s a new office tower and the exterior and interior have been completely remodelled. It looks cool, especially when the reflection of the SkyTrain shows in the glass exterior.

The day we arrived was a bit uncomfortable. There were twelve people in the van during our 45 minute ride from the airport to Surrey. It was hot in there and the humidity made it difficult to breathe easily. My parents had their thermostat at 28?Ǭ? that first night, so that didn?¢‚Ǩ‚Ñ¢t help any either. That whole night I felt I was suffocating. I got used to it over the next day and was fine until I came home. The dry weather in Alberta the day we got back gave me a bloody nose. My nose doesn?¢‚Ǩ‚Ñ¢t like the dry weather.

Anyhow, that wasn?¢‚Ǩ‚Ñ¢t the hassle referred to in my title. The hassle was the stress of our trip back home. We were supposed to board our WestJet flight at 11:15 PST and arrive at 13:45 MST. At about twenty after eleven, they announced that as a result of the snowstorm (read 2-5 cm of snow) the night before and that was continuing yesterday depleted their de-icer supplies and our flight had been cancelled.

We were then instructed to travel back to the other end of the airport and pick up our ten pieces of luggage. We did this and put them on three baggage carts. Luckily, each cart had a basket where our children could sit, so we didn?¢‚Ǩ‚Ñ¢t have to drag them behind us.

Then the two of us had to take the three carts down a switchback ramp to the arrivals level. That was a real hassle, but luckily a kind woman offered to push one of the carts. Once we arrived at the lower level, our luggage was loaded onto a charter bus. We were then bussed 1.5 hours to the Abbotsford airport where an alternate flight was suppose to leave at 14:00. The bus pulled in at 13:55. Luckily for us, the plane was waiting for a second bus, so we had time to grab something to eat.

We then had to load our ten pieces of luggage from the bus back on to three baggage carts. The Abbotsford carts, unfortunately, did not have baskets in which our children could sit, so the two of us were pushing/pulling three carts and dragging two children. We had to check in all our baggage again and we finally boarded the plane at close to 15:00.

We arrived in Calgary around 17:30 MST, and after we filled our truck up with gas, we were back on the highway home around 18:15.

Originally, we planned to grab some groceries when we arrived in Lethbridge since we had eaten all our perishable food before we left. But since we arrived in Lethbridge at 20:30 and it was New Year?¢‚Ǩ‚Ñ¢s Eve, none of the supermarkets were open. We ended up spending 35$ on two bags of groceries at Green?¢‚Ǩ‚Ñ¢s Pop Shop.

I was just glad to get home.

Stanley Park is not the largest urban park in North America

I have talked to many people who say and read many websites that claim Stanley Park is the largest urban park in North America. This is false, and I will prove it.

Below is a list of urban parks in North America larger than 1000 acres (the size of Stanley Park) that others have sent to me.

  • South Mountain Preserve (Phoenix AZ) – 16,283
  • Rouge Valley Park (Markham ON) – 11,600
  • Jamaica Bay National Wildlife Refuge (New York City NY) 9,155
  • Fairmount Park (Philadelphia PA) – 8,900
  • Forest Park (Portland OR) – 5,090
  • Mission Bay Park (San Diego CA) – 4,235
  • Griffith Park (Los Angeles CA) – 4,107
  • Nose Hill Park (Calgary AB) – 2,785 acres
  • Wascana Centre (Regina SK) – 2,325
  • Rockwood Park (Saint John, NB) – 2,200 acres
  • Chapultepec Park (Mexico City) – 2,100
  • Oldman River parks system (Lethbridge AB) – 1,865
  • Rock Creek Park (Washington, DC) 1,754
  • City Park (New Orleans LA) – 1,500
  • Presidio (San Francisco CA) 1,480
  • Canyon Lakes Project (Lubbock TX) – 1,450
  • Wilderness Park in (Lincoln NE) – 1,450 acres
  • Forest Park (St. Louis MO) – 1,370
  • Bays Mountain Park (Kingsport TN) – 1,300
  • Lincoln Park (Chicago IL) 1,208
  • Great Kills (New York City NY) – 1,200
  • Balboa Park (San Diego CA) 1,158
  • Van Cortlandt Park (New York City NY) 1,146
  • Golden Gate Park (San Francisco CA) 1,013
  • Stanley Park (Vancouver BC) – 1,000

As you can see, not only is Stanley Park not the largest park in North America, it isn’t even the largest urban park in Canada. In fact, it isn’t even the largest urban park in western Canada.

BCers can, however, rest assured knowing that Stanley Park may be the largest urban park in British Columbia.

Amazing how people love to spread falsehoods without verifying their accuracy.