vancouver ’84

whew, i am so very glad i remembered about this family vacation to vancouver way back in 1984. otherwise, i would have been forced to become vegan for a week, just to fulfill my letter “v” obligations for this great blogging from a-z challenge. [i do not know enough about either vampires or volcanos to put together a coherent and educational blog post on these subjects. oh, and i have no objections to trying veganism (aka extreme vegetarianism?! )sometime, i just can’t be bothered, right now].

even after all these years, when i stop to reflect, i can pull up so many memories of our family trip out west in the summer of 1984 (i was 14 and going into grade 9, and the brother was 11, going into grade 6). our holiday was about two weeks in length. we flew from toronto to calgary, then rented a car and did a tour from calgary -> banff -> jasper -> kelowna and kamloops -> vancouver -> victoria -> back to calgary and home again via airplane to toronto.

calgary was exciting to my fourteen year old self because of the time change (we went back two hours) and because the air was so dry! (southern ontario is known for its humidity). i distinctly remember all of us waking up in the morning in calgary absolutely parched!

i searched through my photo albums for visuals to share with you…and came up with a measly four photos. i guess karma is trying to tell me to keep this blog post short. [mom and dad, i think you must have a larger collection??!]

dad, the brother and mom on the columbia icefields

we took a formal tour of the columbia icefields, one day. the strongest memory is of how impressed we were with the huge tires on the bus-thing that we rode on! we were also amazed at the vast scope of the icefields…and that there was all this ice in july!

the view of downtown vancouver

in both vancouver and calgary, we stayed in hotels (holiday inn, maybe??) that had many floors. the brother and i begged to stay as high up as we could, and the parents obliged…although, i do remember that mom got so nervous when we went out on the balcony because she feared the swirling winds would suck us over the edge (we mocked her greatly for this, as only a 14 and an 11 year old can do).

me on the grounds of the capilano suspension bridge - check out the size of that maple leaf i am showing off!

we LOVED our day at the capilano suspension bridge. we felt like adventurers as we gleefully traipsed across the gaping expanse!


injecting some fun into our visit to butchart gardens, victoria

butchart gardens is a big tourist attraction. all i remember is flowers…flowers…more flowers (yawn)…still more – you got it – flowers…is it time to swim at the hotel yet??

a few other vivid memories:

~ going to a cfl football game: the b.c. lions played the ottawa rough riders. we cheered loudly and frequently for the ontario visitors which did not make us very popular with the home crowd!

~ shopping in vancouver’s chinatown: we had never seen whole chickens hanging from shop windows before!

~ dad treating us to a swanky dinner one night at a fancy seafood restaurant. i had scallops for the first time, and loved them!

~ trying to find the hoodoos in drumheller, alberta. we drove and drove and drove and drove some more…the brother and i were bored out of our minds, and mom and dad were squabbling over directions…when we finally found the land formations, we were all like, woop-dee-doo, that’s how tired and out-of-sorts we were. the brother and i just wanted to get back to the hotel to swim!


guess what – i still have two souvenirs from the vancouver ’84 trip. it will come as no surprise to you that they are…


and i still wear them!

the inspiration behind today's title

my tee from vancouver's chinatown - we all got the same design on a different background colour! (yellow, blue, red...what was the 4th one?!).

i am so very grateful to mom and dad for the family vacations that we all enjoyed, growing up (florida in grade 3 and a tour of eastern canada in 1981 come first to mind). travel is such a gift to give to children.

you can hop on a plane today to VACATION anywhere in the world. where are you going? i’ll pick hawaii! never been, and it’s got sun and heat!

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  • Fran@ Broken Cookies Don't Count  On April 26, 2012 at 8:28 am

    The one place I’ve visited in Canada is Vancouver. It was Incredible! I was there for the Expo back in 19?? when ever it was. What a place…thanks for reminding me, Cath!!

    • 1970kikiproject  On April 26, 2012 at 9:15 am

      what a coincidence! that is too fun! glad you enjoyed your time in vancouver. i think it’d be a great city to live in … but they get a lot of rain! i just googled for ya – expo ’86! 🙂

  • strivingcynic  On April 25, 2012 at 5:40 pm

    I’m amazed you still have the shirt, although I guess I shouldn’t be surprised.
    I’d like to go to Hawaii. Vancouver would be cool, too. Alaska. New Zealand. Iceland. It’s all intriguing.

    • 1970kikiproject  On April 25, 2012 at 6:45 pm

      i am so glad i held onto the tshirts! they’re both SO soft! i made my own vintage, haha! all of you choices sound awesome, zo! you need an around-the-world tour!

  • Gina Unger  On April 25, 2012 at 5:05 pm

    hands down, i’d choose to return to taiwan with Jeff and the kids if i were given the opportunity to go just one place anywhere in the world right now.

  • g2-55680831163e76fec0743a15184137d2  On April 25, 2012 at 10:42 am

    Greece. Specifically the island of Santorini. I would love to be there in the warm sun, eating Greek food, and watching the sun rise and set over the Aegean again. I would love to see how the excavated areas have grown and what they have found since 1973. Can you tell that I loved my time there?

    • 1970kikiproject  On April 25, 2012 at 11:07 am

      oh, that setting sounds divine, johanna! wish i could magically grant your wish. and thank you for educating me about the geography of greece! yes, wouldn’t it be fascinating for you to see the changes from years ago!

  • Lisa  On April 25, 2012 at 8:49 am

    What a great vacay memory! I love the part where your mom was nervous about the balcony. That’s so me—I hate it when anyone gets near an edge of something. I don’t like it when anyone sits on a railing (even if it’s near the ground)….and I better never have kids, because we live near a lake and I can barely stand to be around any child walking on a dock—they might fall in! (and usually it’s not deep and there are 10 adults around who could fish them out…but still).
    I don’t know where I’d go if I could fly anywhere…but it would surely be a place with a beach and hot hot hot weather!

    • 1970kikiproject  On April 25, 2012 at 9:21 am

      yes – mom is not a fan of heights! (i have more examples i could share – haha!). now i have a different perspective, being an adult and observing children – i hear you on being nervous about kids near water! yea, we would not be too picky about a warm climate, would we?! any beach would do!!

  • Ele  On April 25, 2012 at 6:26 am

    Fran and I have great memories of childhood vacations as well. My favorite vacation was to Toronto a few weeks after my daughter passed. We went for a long planned hockey tournament (which the boys won a la Lake Placid in the Olympics…even the other team cheered when we won and they were told the circumstances…the guys were all wearing special shirts to honor my daughter’s memory). My grandson, who was only 4 at the time and had just lost his mother would go with me at 6 AM to the motel pool to swim. We had the best time. We talked and cried and hugged. The next year the team won again and we were able to return to the same motel, the same rooms and the same pool. We often talk about that pool and that motel. Some day (8 more years) we will return when he is old enough to drive us there (’cause Grummy don’t fly!) Somehow, I think that pool will still give us that wonderful feeling it did 5 years ago.

    • 1970kikiproject  On April 25, 2012 at 6:59 am

      first, i am so sorry to learn about the loss of your daughter, ele. i did not realize you that you had lost her…that is very sad news, and i am sending you a big hug. thanks for talking about toronto! (i live an hour west and go weekly to visit!). love the memories you share about the hotel, the pool, the hockey tournament. what is it with kids and the draw of a hotel pool?! i DO hope you return for a visit soon because we could meet up for sure!!

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