Friday, August 10, 2012

Goodbye Edmonton...

Well probably goodbye but never say never....my sister is moving to Toronto at the end of August so being as my niece lives there as well I will be heading there a lot more in the future.  So I decided to go up and see Colleen and say goodbye to Edmonton.  I have a soft spot for Edmonton - I lived there while going to school in 1970-71.   You can keep Calgary...I much prefer Edmonton - by a long shot.

Anyway...I flew off  Friday June 28th stopping in Calgary on the way and took the bus/LRT and then walked to my sister's place. (hey $8 as opposed to $18 - works for me)  We had salad and sandwiches for lunch at Colleen's then off we went downtown to check out the Works (arts & design festival) going on downtown.
City Hall in Edmonton

We then toured the Art Gallery.  As I've mentioned previously I am a philistine when it comes to art - I don't understand modern art.  I just like a nice picture.  So most of it went over my head....

Edmonton art gallery
 We then headed to the Southgate Mall which has been renovated since I was there last.  I didn't bother with the West Edmonton Mall - been there, done that tons of times - my sister lived in West Edmonton in the 80's and early 90's and was a ten minute walk from the mall so it was just the local mall.  I had a little bit of a Bath and Body Works fix - I had to restrain myself due to having to fit it into my carry on (which certainly was not a carry on going home...) wheelie suitcase.  We had supper at the food court.


Registering for the walk
Thee were the steps!!! 
The next morning David from the St. Albert Trekkers picked me up with Verni from Vancouver in the passenger seat.  People in our walking club (world wide!) are wonderful and David generously offered to pick me up.  Off we went to an area close to Fort Edmonton Park to do the CVF 25th Anniversary walk.  I did the 10km walk which was lovely - even if it did involve going up 200 steps!!!

 It was over a new pedestrian bridge on the North Saskatchewan river and along trails.  An area that me as a tourist would never get to - that's the beauty of Volkssport.  I really enjoyed it and got to see some old walking friends and meet new ones.
 Following the walk there was a BBQ but I was meeting Colleen at Fort Edmonton Park.  Well in retrospect I should have had lunch as Colleen's taxi was late and it turned out she had eaten lunch so I made do with a so so egg salad sandwich in one of the "hotels".  I hadn't been to Fort Edmonton Park since 1977 and they had expanded it.  More "streets" that went up to the 1920's - it started out with the actual fort which is what I had seen back then.  Very interesting but it was so hot - we were worn out.  We went back to the apartment and just relaxed.

Enjoyable walk
Fort Edmonton back it it's "heyday"

Bunk house - note the Hudson Bay blanket!

I  used to fantasize about riding in a stage coach but never got into this one!

 Sunday morning we relaxed until it was time to go for brunch at Zinc which is in the art gallery.  I treated as this was Colleen's retirement meal. Very elegant.  Brunch was a three course meal.   I will let the pictures tell the story!!!
Parfaits and puff pastries to start. We shared this plate.

Next course:  cheese, fruit and prune compote.  We shared this plate.

Lobster benedict - this was mine - all mine!; Colleen had salmon benedict. 

 From there we walked home and changed and went off to celebrate Canada Day at the Legislative Buildings.  I must point out here that Colleen is a downtown dweller like me so everything is close by.  Due to rain earlier in the day it wasn't very crowded so we sat and listened to the music - did we enjoy it?  Well that's another story!!!   We had every intention of going back for the fireworks but we were both tired and as it turned out we could see most of them from Colleen's balcony.

Alberta Legilative Buildings on Canada Day

Patriotic pride!

Showing off my Canadian flag socks.

Like Saskatchewan, Alberta's Legislative Building is celebrating its 100th anniversary.
Monday morning off we went to walk in the Mill Creek area.  We walked from Colleen's apartment and did about 8 km.  The Edmonton river valley is really quite lovely. 

Colleen walking along the path.

Lovely shaded path.

Taking a break. A photo break that is!!!
We both really enjoyed the walk and afterwards walked to Whyte Avenue where we caught the bus to a New Orleans themed restaurant called Dadeo.  I had a catfish poboy.  Very good!!!  Colleen treated us which was nice.  After a browse on Whyte Avenue (no shopping as both of us just had a bit of cash on us) we went back to the apartment.  After a couple of hours I headed out again to do a bit more walking and get views of the river valley.   We then headed back to Whyte Avenue and went to see the film "The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel" at the Princess theatre.  What can I say, I love that film!!!
 
 I really like you Edmonton!
And I'm really going to miss you....

The next morning I took the bus back to Whyte Avenue armed with more cash (and a credit card for good measure!)..I had seen a light switch plate of a sunflower I had fallen in love with so Colleen bought that for me as part of my birthday gift. It is on my wall now and I love it.   I also got myself a few little things such as birthday cards, a couple of new scents for my scent burner...(I don't burn candles as I am terrified of fire).  Whyte Avenue has some great murals as well so had to photograph them.  Well as much as you can "photograph" with a point and shoot...yep I left the DSLR at home...but I really didn't miss it.   I just always feel so inadequate when I am taking a picture beside someone with a DSLR - invariably I have to tell them 'I have one of those at home'.  We then went for Colleen's birthday lunch to a diner downtown that I can't remember the name of...oh well - we also looked around a bit downtown before heading back.  Then it was time to head home...Colleen came with me on the LRT and bus.  It is very handy now that Edmonton has a bus go from the airport to the LRT station closest to it.  Edmonton's airport is ridiculously far out of the city.

Back home again but what a fun weekend.  Bye bye Edmonton.....

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