Tuesday, 17 March 2009

Day 15.5 - Here I Go Again

Firsts on this trip:

My first NHL game.
My first AHL game.

My first stay in a Hilton hotel.

My first manicure.
My first visit to Brooklyn. (But certainly NOT my last!)
Ditto Washington, DC. And Virginia, Maryland and Newark, NJ.
(Definitely my last visit to Newark, if I have any say in the matter!)

My first time meeting people I'd previously known only via the internet.

My first direct flight to an east coast destination from YVR.

Mario Penguin in JFK.

My first time being unabashedly touristy.
My first time being TRULY comfortable flying by the seat of my pants.

My first perfect vacation.

* * * * * * *

Day 15. 72 nautical miles east of Vancouver @ ~28,000 feet.

Flying over the Coast Mountains, dipping lower in the air as my flight prepares to land, I can't get over how unbelievably gorgeous the mountains in British Columbia are.

Can you believe I got this shot from the plane?
(Okay, technically these are the Rockies, not the Coast Mountains:
two totally different mountain chains, in case you didn't know... I didn't until I moved to B.C.)

I feel odd knowing that even their breathtaking beauty will never make me love this place the way I love my dirty, grey-brown banks of snow and the carpets of dead, decomposing oak leaves and the -30 windchill in the mornings when the weak sun makes a valiant effort to cheer a freezing world up just a little.

those, on the other hand, are the Coast Mountains

I love the mountains the way I love most art; I can stare in wonder the way one gawks in a museum at a very captivating Van Gogh or a puzzling Escher, but eventually you have to go home. And you can't take them with you.

For the first time ever since moving to B.C., the sun is blindingly bright as we descend over the Pacific into YVR and I remember why, the very first time I flew into the city, I couldn't help feeling like we were going to crash into the ocean - the runway begins (or ends) a mere hundred metres from the edge of the water.

The plane lands almost seamlessly, without more than a couple of bumps... as if the world is welcoming me, glad that I seem to have figured out that this isn't home, and that I'll be milking this place for all it's worth until this chapter of my life comes to a close, determined to make the next year of my life the fullest, funnest (yeah, not a word - for once I don't care), and most fulfilling.

... so here I go again on my own,
goin' down the only road I've ever known,

like a drifter I was born to walk alone.

I've made up my mind,
I ain't wasting no more time.

Here I go again...

- 'Here I Go Again' by Whitesnake

*cross-blog reference: okay random little thing that wigs me out in a good way? this song was originally on an album called "saints & sinners"*


Jessclub7 said...

My calendar is Escher :)

And I feel like I ruin your blog every time I make an inane comment like that.

mer said...

the first time I skipped school it was to go to an Escher show at the National Art Gallery.

basically I was pestering my mother over breakfast to go sometime because it was ending soon, and she just decided to let me ditch.

I was 10. (great example Diana, great example...)

(plus, I love your inane comments!)

Jessclub7 said...

My mum once kept me and my bro off school because Marks & Spencer (the most English shop in the world) was having a sale which started on a Monday and she wanted to get some bargains.

And she's a teacher.

mer said...

BAHAHA! Okay two things: first, I bought my mum this one kind of M&S bubble bath EVERY year for Christmas when I was a kid (and I go to M&S EVERY time I'm in the UK because I miss it so much!)

second, I totally ran into my mum when I ditched on time. also shopping. somehow I got off lecturing her on skipping work...

Jessclub7 said...

I love M&S! The food is the best. My housemates and I always get food from there when it is an 'occasion'.

My friend Kate is one of the managers of their Marble Arch flagship store. She went to Cambridge University but all she ever really wanted to do was work for M&S.

When we were doing A Levels, we had free periods at school for the first time and we went to M&S in the afternoon and saw 2 of our teachers, who should have been in school teaching. They were the worst teachers I ever had. And when we went over to say 'hi!' in a completely sneering manner, they literally ran towards the exit!

ali said...

Mer -- I loved reading about your vacation... it really sounded like a blast, and I'm so glad that I had the opportunity to be a part of it, at least for that one day.

When I moved to Kentucky, I didn't think it would be that much different than the East Coast -- it is... and I miss the East Coast too... there's just something about it...

Happy Wednesday! :)

Lauren said...

@Ali: I can relate to how different it can be when you move away from the East Coast. I never imagined that moving from Pittsburgh to Cleveland (a mere 2 hour drive from each other) would be such a culture shock - but things are just so...different. Needless to say, the East Coast is far superior to the Midwest (or the Mideast, as my brother-in-law likes to call Ohio).