Sep
30
2012

Saskatoon, Edmonton and the Mall!

Its been a few days since the last post so thought I’d better give an update to let everyone know I haven’t fed Abby to the bears yet. We made it out of flat Manitoba into Saskatchewan which turned out to be equally as flat. Drove quite a lot in this state as there wasn't much to see as everything is just farm land, wheat and barley, oh and more wheat.

More interestingly, I did think my eyes were going funny at one point because of the massive straight roads. Every 10 meters or so it seemed to me like black splodges of tar were moving across the road, slowly but enough to notice as we hurtled along. I asked Abby what she thought but she never had her glasses on at the time so, I may as well have been asking the headrest. Anyway, I stopped in the middle of the road when I saw the next moving black thing (no cars around so it’s not like stopping on the M6) and they were moving! They were massive caterpillars and we must have passed millions of them over a couple of hours driving. (Abby put a stop to me counting them shortly after 6 or 7!)

 

We stayed in Saskatoon, the capital of Saskatchewan which was a really nice place. Everything is centred round the university and the river which flows through the town. Everyone was really friendly, the weather was beautiful and we both really liked this place.

We went for a wander round the university grounds and into the natural science museum which they have on site. Went for a wander around the farmers market as this was something Abby wanted to do, but when we eventually found it, it wasn’t open. We also stumbled across a Corn maze on our drive, so decided to go in as we both couldn’t remember ever going in one. We made it in and out without getting too lost and without nicking too much corn!

Nothing else to say about this place really other than we thought it was -6 hrs GMT here (which it is) but unbeknown to us, they don’t do daylight savings so it was actually -7 hrs GMT (same as Alberta). So we just spent a few days getting up and eating an hour earlier! Oh well!

 

So, Alberta! Well with just over 4000km on the clock and 52hrs of driving, we arrived in Edmonton on the 28th September which is north of the Rockies. Edmonton was a place we wanted to spend a few days and just chill as we have been on the road a lot, so we found a nice little B&B and checked in for 3 nights.

Like Saskatoon, Edmonton is a really nice city which I could quite happily spend a lot more time in. Again centred round a river that runs through the city, there is quite a relaxed way of life here. We spent a lot of time shopping around the area of Strathcona which is pretty much downtown of the main city. Well when I say we, I mean Abby, I just followed her around carrying things as I do best.

Abby got to go in her farmers market this time in which we found a stall selling home-made salsa and offering over 20 different types and strengths with free tortilla chips to try them with. They claimed to have the hottest salsa in Edmonton featuring the dangerous ghost chilli, but upon trying this I decided I wasn’t convinced and I needed a second sampling. In my opinion, some of Dan’s chilli in the past has been hotter! Anyway, after sometime we (and this time I mean I) were asked to either buy something or leave (after nearly eating a third of it), so we settled for the ‘Hot’ version (which was about 4 grades down from ghost) as Abby really did want to be able to eat some.

However the main attraction in Edmonton and the reason why it’s on the map is probably West Edmonton Mall. This place is massive, about 5 times bigger than the Trafford centre, you really can get lost in there. Abby was in her element with over 800 shops and 4 food courts! However, it also featured a 24 screen cinema, a water park that wouldn’t look out of place in Disney Florida, 2 x 18 hole mini golf courses, a full sized ice hockey and skating rink, oh and a theme park! Yes that’s right, and now you’re probably thinking (as I did), “it won’t have many rides in there”. Well, yes I agree there is probably more to do for kids than adults, but out of the7 ‘adult’ rides in there, the 2 roller-coasters were better than anything Alton Towers has to offer! We did them both… well we had to really!

 

This place really was ridiculous, needless to say we spent a whole day there and still didn’t cover anywhere near half of it!

Heading down to Jasper for a few days to do some serious hiking over my birthday so will post again from there!

 

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