My Two Favorite Dorks

My Two Favorite Dorks

Saturday, October 5, 2013

Oh, Canada

Me and a tree: self-portrait
Went to Vancouver, British Columbia, the week before last for a three-day marketing conference. I was with two of my co-workers and it was so much fun! Flew out on Saturday and came back Thursday. Long days of travel but totally worth it.

Vancouver is very beautiful when the sun is shining which, from everything I gather, is not often the case in the fall as it was for us. Here are some cool pictures.

The view from my room...on the 16th floor! Practically the pent house.

The cutest sea otter I have ever seen, at the Vancouver Aquarium - a fantastic place.

Moose Mountie!*
*Mouse Mountie remains unpurchased in Canada :)

Waterfall at Capilano Suspension Bridge park

Cool old tree in the walkway at Capilano Suspension Bridge park. There were tons of boardwalks, tree canopy walkways, a cliffwalk (below) and other various look-off spots throughout this very beautiful (temperate) rain forest.

Three Amigos. These are my unbelievably cool and awesome friends from work that I went with to Vancouver. Kristen (left) is our philanthropy manager and is the most amazing supervisor ever; Debbie (middle) is our marketing/communications person and is wonderful as well. We had a great time traveling together.

Me on the cliffwalk!

Planes docked at Vancouver's water plane airport, a few blocks from our hotel on the harbor (or 'harbour' as they would write). It was so cool watching them take off and land.

View across the harbor on a very pretty day.
While in many ways, it seems like you are not in another country in Vancouver (going through customs - really??) in some ways it does - those are the things I most enjoy about traveling. It was cool using the different money, and hearing people say "loonies" and "toonies." I liked being able to strike up a conversation with an average Canadian person about hockey and have them actually know essentially what was going on with their local team. And the people there seemed very friendly for the most part. But geez was everything expensive!!

Switching Gears...

Now I know you all are dying to know (not really) how my back did through all of this with my having neglected PT for quite a while and how my lungs did while I was out there. The easy answer is that my back gave me a lot of trouble, mostly because of the awful chairs at the conference, but was easily controlled with Tramadol (my non-narcotic pain medicine that has basically become my best friend over the last two years.) My lungs did okay...

I like this map of Vancouver because you can see what a water town it is! It also makes it easy to imaging how beautiful the scenery is. By the way, the green area under where it says "Unique Media" is Stanley Park, kind of like their Central Park. It's a really lovely place with windy roads, lots of huge trees, walkways and people.
Expanding on that a bit, I did a lot of walking around in Vancouver - my lungs really like that - and rode the recumbent bike once at our swanky hotel, so I did get some exercise while I was out there. My coughing was well controlled with my go-to guaifensen "blue miracle" pills.

As far as oxygen on the flights, I did not use it or arrange to use it on the way out partly because I didn't think I would need it (sats had been running 97 or so), but really because it just slipped my mind that I would have to make arrangements to actually use it. (Turns out, you are not supposed to put a POC in your checked luggage because it uses a lithium ion batter - oops!)

However, I did have my pulse oximeter with me on the flight out and my sats dropped well into the 80s, so I knew I had to make arrangements for the way home. I will spare you the details, but suffice to say it ended up being a giant mess - there was about an hour of time when I was furiously making phone calls back to the States and was afraid that I would have to both push my flight back and shell out hundreds of dollars for either another portable oxygen conentrator rental, an extra battery, express shipping, another hotel room night, etc. but it worked out amazingly that I was able to use my own unit. Live and learn.

Yes, I missed you guys, too...

Now I am back home. I can never believe how much I miss my cats...if I had ten million years to spend with them, I would want ten million and one. My dad is still in the hospital in Cleveland, unfortunately - that has been worrisome. And I am getting back into doing my PT to see if it will help my back and I am exercising a lot and being more mindful of what goes into my body. I am going to see my pulmonary doc soon - maybe even this week - to make sure I'm in a good place going into our Belize trip in early November.

But most important of all - and for those of you who know me this will come as no surprise - it's hockey time, baby! Time to start cheering for those Canes.

Until next time,

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