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I write with no particular theme in mind, because I am random like that.

Aug
21 2017

5:40 PM

Travel

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Observations in Canada

After 7 days in Vancouver.

People here seem to be less friendly when I have a face mask on. 😷

I felt it right from the time I landed. After collecting my luggage and getting out of the restricted zone, I approached the lady at the information counter inquiring about where I could rent mobile wifi. She stared at me in my mask, grimaced and told me I’m out of luck, all the while not smiling.

We were watching the solar eclipse this morning and I had my face mask on because of the crowds (it also doubled up as a UV shield). That was when a man asked me point blank.

“Can I ask you a personal question? Why are you wearing a mask?”

I couldn’t be bothered to mention my medical condition. Instead, I muttered something about the UV rays being strong and I didn’t have sunblock on. He didn’t look convinced. Instead, he kind of sneered and walked away.

It’s so easy to find fellow Pokémon Go players to raid a gym with you, especially at Canada Place or the Convention Centre.

Yes guys, I still play Pokémon Go. #sorrynotsorry

And people here will actually approach one another to raid a gym together.

The excitement is apparent. When other Pokémon Go players spy me (and my cousin) lurking nearby while staring at our mobile phones, they will approach us and ask “are you guys here for Articuno/Moltres/(insert legendary pokemon name here)? Let’s raid this gym together!”

So raid the gym we did.

Eventually, the gym boss will be defeated and it’s time to catch it. Without fail, someone will always say, “all right, good luck guys!”

It was a really nice feeling.

In contrast, people in Singapore (and Hong Kong) will spy a crowd at the Pokémon gym and just silently join in, all without saying a word to one another.

The Canadian pride is strong.

I spy the Canadian flag everywhere.

Hanging outside houses, dangling from cars and yachts. Everywhere.

During my first couple of days there, a woman on a bicycle with an attached trailer passed me. Wrapped around the trailer was a large Canadian flag. I couldn’t stop gaping.

There were shops everywhere selling almost anything you can plant the Canadian flag (or the maple leaf emblem) on. Tourist traps? I’m really not sure. Because I spy several local people wearing them.

But the amount of pride Canadians have in their country is amazing.

Public Transport is insanely expensive.

A one-stop away journey from Burrard Street Station to Waterfront Station cost me $2.20.

One stop.

Less than five minutes.

My expression when I tapped out at Waterfront Station. –> 😱

Go figure. I’m never complaining about Singapore’s public transport fares every again.

The salmon here is really, really orange.

As if it’s been injected with dye.

I remember having salmon sashimi with my cousin during my first night there and I was gaping open-mouthed at the salmon in front of me, wondering why did the colour look so vivid.

The cousin, amused, told me that the salmon here is redder because it’s fresh from the sea and doesn’t need to be imported.

I was so unused to the colour that my first few bites were tentative. Then I remembered that I was in Vancouver (where I shouldn’t have to worry about tainted food) and proceeded to wolf everything down.

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