We landed at 7:30 pm so that didn't leave us any time to do much that evening after we got to the hotel, picked up our prize packages and got settled into the room. We did use the hot tub but if you know Ron you'll know that that's just a given when we go to a hotel! We did wander around the hotel and attached mall but the shops were all closed. The hotel lobby was filled with gingerbread houses that with a donation to a charity you could vote for your favourite creation.
This house greeted us in the lobby. It must've been 9 or 10 feet high! It was not eligible for voting.
This one won first place, it was beautiful. I know the girls would've chosen this one as their favourite too! (these photos were taken with my ipod so they aren't the greatest)
The view from the 20th floor (or the 19th seeing as there wasn't a 13th floor in the hotel)
Saturday it rained and rained and rained some more. We wanted to go to the Aquarium and Granville Island. We had planned on walking part of the way to the Aquarium from our hotel along the sea wall and then hop on a bus the rest of the way to the Aquarium. Turns out the busses weren't running that morning because of the parade and any taxi we saw had people in it so we walked the entire way. I'm not sure how far it actually is but in my shoes that weren't made for purposeful walking, only browsing speed, it felt like it was at least 10 miles! It's probably more like 2 or 3 but however long it really was my feet hurt by the time we got there! We saw some really good exhibits and shows at the Aquarium, they have shows every 15 mins and they are full of information. Here are some pictures (taken with the ipod):
The beluga whales liked to swim upside down.
This little guy swam right up to the glass to look at Ron & I as though we were the exhibit!
Some funny looking land animals at the aquarium!
When we were finished at the Aquarium we hopped on the bus, which was back in service, back to our hotel to dry off and warm up a bit before we hopped back on the bus to Granville Island. We walked around there for a while looking at the different shops. There weren't too many Christmas buskers around, I think the rain kept them away. That was too bad, we were really looking forward to hearing some different kinds of music.
After Granville Island we hopped the bus back to the CFL headquarters where different events were taking place. They had bands playing on an outdoor stage but they were the only ones sheltered from the rain so there were only 5 people standing in front of the stage listening to the bands! The Olympic Cauldron was lit and CFL alumni players were signing autographs. There were other things going on that are too long to list!
The Olympic Cauldron
Milt Stegall signing autographs for someone I don't know! I wasn't willing to stand in line for over an hour to get his autograph. I realize that doesn't seem like a long time for some of you diehard fans but we had to keep moving to keep on schedule for our day.
We then met my cousin for supper and saw her new place. She moved to Vancouver three months ago so it was great to see where she lives!
Sunday was game day!! I woke up early I was so excited!! We wandered over to the stadium shortly after lunch and just took in what was going on. The crowds in the streets were calm yet excited. Everyone was in a good mood and when you met someone wearing your team's colours it was a bunch of cheering and high fives. When we got to the stadium we didn't know where our seats would be, we were expecting nosebleed seats because we didn't think they'd give good seats to non season ticket holders. Well, we were wrong! We were 5 rows up from the field in the end zone that ended up having most of the action! It was also the end zone that the teams used to get to their dressing rooms so we were right there for the team introductions!
Pregame warm up with Wally looking on.
I think this was field goal #3 for the day.
Proof that we were actually there!!
The haze in the above photos was due to the pyrotechnics during the halftime show.
Nickelback on stage during the halftime show.
Another one of my cousin's won a trip to the Grey Cup and it turns out he was sitting about three rows behind us! I went to talk to him during halftime and he had been staying at our hotel too. It's so funny how you can be in the exact same place as someone else and you never see them. The Bombers had been staying at our hotel too. We saw them often and even talked to Glenn January in the hot tub for a while the night before the game. (Hopefully we didn't ruin his routine too much that we caused them to lose!!) Again, I'm sure we've disappointed some diehard fans but we didn't get any autographs. We were trying to be respectful and not bug them after their long practise days trying to get ready for the big game. That and we didn't always recognize them, they look different in regular clothes than they do in their uniforms and helmets, and if they aren't interviewed regularly by the media we have no idea who they are!
We had a great time and are so glad we got to go. Of course this means that the next time the farm wins a trip somewhere it won't be us who goes. Ron just hopes it's not a trip to Hawaii!!