Monday, 12 December 2016

Obstacle Course Living or A Fairly Frigid Ferry and a Brilliant Bus Bozo

Reserving my beach hut has changed things.  Gone is the lack of energy or motivation I felt only two days ago at the prospect of freezing my behind off for another 3 months.  I wake up EARLY, because I'm looking forward to running all the errands necessary to provide for Grandma, get my life organized, and to deal with the remaining obstacles in the way of actually getting to that beach hut.
 One of the obstacles of daily Canadian living presents itself already at 8:53 am.  I have walked to the General Store to buy a bottle of wine for my gracious hostess as a small Thank You for a big favour she once did for me; a favour that keeps giving!   But the store clerk informs me:  You have to wait 7 more minutes; we are not allowed to sell you alcohol before 9 am. So I walk down to the beach. Better to get better at the beach than to get bitter.

Oh, for Friggs Sake, Canada, stop nannying your citizens !  This is getting ridiculous.  If anyone wants to get fully alcoholised at 8:53 am they could just buy one MORE bottle the night before when it is legal to do so.  NOT selling wine at 8:53 am does NOTHING, except piss people off and constantly remind them that they are at the mercy of the state.  Is that really the kind of citizen you want to have, Canada?   The sad part is that the answer might just be YES.

Having finally succeeded at buying alcohol at a legal time, having delivered that alcohol to the intended recipient, I rush to the bus stop to make the ferry connection.  In the 5 years that I have been coming here, this is actually the very first time that I take the bus to the ferry terminal.   It reminds me of the bus in Ha Noi because just like the Ha Noi bus it gets to its destination by seemingly unnecessary loops and detours, just to reach as many customers as possible.
Langdale Ferry Terminal

Here comes the Queen

 Looks COLD?  Try walking on the upper deck to take pictures ...

 The seagull does not seem to notice the cold, it keeps playing air games in the ferry's air draft.
WHY have I never seen seagulls in Vietnam ?

The ferry ride is uneventful, but as I find out in Horseshoe Bay, the ferry left LATE, 10 minutes to be precise.  How do I find out?   The Express Bus serving the ferry terminal LEFT EMPTY.  It left about 4 minutes before about 50 ferry passengers arrive speed-walkingh at the bus stop, shivering in the cold and desperately looking for their bus.  Oh Canada !
 After waiting for 5 minutes at the bus stop while I'm slowly loosing the feeling in my finger tips (I really notice it while typing this) and realizing that I would have to wait another 15 minutes and that the bus that will arrive is not even the express bus but the slow one, a thought forms in my mind.  I would have lunch when arriving back 'home', so why not have lunch here and after lunch catch the next express bus.  I might be able to save some of my finger tips from the frightening result of Vancouver bus drivers deciding to drive an empty bus just to be on schedule.  

Done.  I'm sitting in a semi-warm restaurant, sipping a yummy Sauvignon Blanc while the rest of the deserted bus passengers keeps shivering on the street.  I've reached an age where I refuse to suffer from the capriciousness of public service employees in the so-called first world.  And it works out very well.  The Fish & Chips at Bay Moorings is delicious (new management finally?) and much better than anything I would have gotten at Denny's ;-) 

I've finished the meal and I STILL can't feel my finger tips.  Thinking thoughts of beach huts warms my heart and soul but unfortunately does NOTHING for my finger tips ;-(

It's a good thing I finish lunch earlier than anticipated, because the 12:25 257 Express Bus is full and leaves at 12:22.   Go Canada Go !

When I finally get to my hotel (I walk from Park Royal instead of relying on another bus), I almost crack up laughing:
NO, they're NOT renovating the place;  Next fall the motel will be torn down to make room for more overpriced high-rise condominiums.  Oh Joy !

The last obstacle?   When the photocopier of the hotel reception refuses to photocopy my passport (paper jams), the receptionist tells me that she is applying for her Permanent Resident status right now and how she is amazed that everything is so complicated and so SLOW, especially after hearing from a friend travelling in Asia how unbureaucratic and fast things get done over there.  NO, I didn't NOT put her up to it, LOL.

Last obstacle of the day?   I am about to sign my application for a citizen search, when I have to run over to reception for the umpteenth time because I only have a pen that writes dark blue.  So? you ask?   NO, NO, gotta do it properly! The form specifies that the signature must be made in BLACK ink.   

So, where IS John Galt?

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