To plan or not. I typically select the latter in my personal life. For the last three and a half years a significant portion of my job has required me to plan events, programs and schedules for other people. I like to think that because I spend somewhere around thirty hours a week planning and scheduling for others, the result has been a personal and social life that could be described as one with negative planning involved. So we tried that this weekend for the tourism challenge. Result: five stamps as compared to eight last week. I don’t think we can entirely blame the lack of planning on this one. We slowed down a bit and took a little more time at the attractions (and the scavenger hunt in gas town took an hour).
First stop was Giovane Cafe at the Fairmont Pacific Rim. Not a part of the tourism challenge today but still worth mentioning. A huge latte and the two most perfectly cooked eggs later we were ready to kick the morning off. Before we got a chance to leave, our incredible server (Sandra I think), who we traded insider tips about the tourism challenge with, hooked us up with some decadent salted chocolate chip cookies for the road.
First attraction stop was the Vancouver Aquarium. I’m pretty uncertain if this was my first time at this particular aquarium, but I’m positive I’ve not been to an aquarium elsewhere. As it turns out, I have pretty conflicted feelings about aquariums. Our challenge was to find out which two items are the third and forth most found items in landfills. Ang and I made our way through the aquarium, which is actually pretty large and we got a little bit lost. We found ourselves in the mammal exhibits. First finding a false killer whale, I think, where Angie shared a moment, and I my thoughts began to wander to that documentary Black Fish (watch it, but you’ll never want to go to an aquarium again). I noticed how small this animal tanks was, how said its eyes looked. Had to get out of there.
We found ourselves upstairs and outside. More mammals. More small tanks. Harbor Seals, Sealions, Otters and Penguins. All in relatively small tanks. Angie and I moved on from this area relatively quickly, as we both had mixed feelings about the animals here. It’s quite likely that many of these animals are probably rescue animals and were unlikely to survive in the wild on their own anyways (or at least that’s what I had to tell myself to keep from having a full on melt-down and temper tantrum.
Pan to: the jellyfish. I could have watched them for hours. The mesmerizing, glowing, and pulsating highlight of the trip to the aquarium. Seriously, even if you are against aquariums because of the whale/mammal debate, just go for the jellyfish.
After the Aquarium we made our way to the Vancouver Police Museum and WOW. This one is the unexpected winner of the day.
Our challenge was to select a card that would condemn us a crook or a cop and we’d have to find clues to find out if we as the criminal were guilty or as the cop if we could find our criminal and solve the case. Both Ang and I were criminals- gangsters to be exact (pretty fitting right), who turned out to be guilty and were sentenced to life in prison (I think I killed someone and she was a drug smuggler).
This museum is a gem. They have galleries dedicated to old and new firearms, women in the force, solved and unsolved Vancouver murders cases and (my personal favourite) a replica morgue. Incredible.
We made a run to Gastown to do a scavenger hunt and one of the clues led us to the Lululemon Lab. We accidentally spent about thirty minutes inside trying on jackets (quite the marketing ploy lulu, I salute you). It was also raining pretty hard at this ti
me so shelter from the rain was also much appreciated. Once we finished up the scavenger hunt we made our way to Science World.
Angie tapped out of spending too much time at Science World, luckily my dear pal, Rebecca stepped up to the plate and we enjoyed an afternoon inside with mostly kids and their parents.
We found ourselves at an exhibit with a variety of objects, some skeletons of animals,
rocks, fluvial deposits. Yes fluvial deposits. Rebecca, who knows some things about the earth and rocks and stuff got pretty excited about those fluvial deposits. There’s also an exhibit on Canadian Inventions- you know the typical things, penicillin, Nanaimo bars, yukon gold potatoes. But did you know that the light bulb was in fact a Canadian invention!? Edison apparently bought the patent rights from two Canadians back in the day. Thanks for the light Woodward and Evans.
After actually learning a few things we found the fun interactive area that mostly caters to kids. But hey, isn’t that what Science World is about- making everyone feel like a kid again? OK, maybe not but we sure enjoyed ourselves trying to play the Harry Potter Theme song on the giant keyboard, floating in a mirror and shooting balls up a wind-tunnel maze.
It’s a wonder how the kid in you can come out in places like this. Thanks for another great week, Ang, Rebecca and tourism Vancouver!