adventures in the far east — of canada!

The coolest thing about St. John’s

In st. john's on June 12, 2009 at 7:38 am

…is the weather. HA!

Seriously, it’s pretty nippy; I mean, my brother and I saw a mini iceberg off the coast of Signal Hill! And the wind is always tugging at you… Fortunately, I’m told they’re having a bit of a cold snap, and were enjoying over 20 days before I arrived.

Anyway, we arrived at noon local time (only 8:30 am for most of you Albertans), after a long flight that wasn’t as long as it seemed, at least to me. It took a little over 3 hours or so to reach Toronto, and then we switched planes, and then it took over another 3 hours or so to reach St. John’s.

You know what? You don’t appreciate the size of Canada until you just about travel from one side to the other; it may be a whole +3.5 timezone difference from Alberta, but think if you were from BC–FOUR and a half hours! It kinda bugs me to think that it’s just about noon  here, so that means it’s just about 8:30 back home…

I’ve decided to stay with that nice lady I’ve been speaking with these past few days, for $400/month including absolutely everything. It’s homey, comfortable, and within walking distance to groceries, work, and parks. Then again, I think if you live anywhere in St. John’s, you’ll be in walking distance to a park–the truth is, the place seems to be more like parks interrupted here and there by communities. Everywhere you look is some huge pond or lake, an expanse of forest, and potholes!

Anyway, back to our gracious host. Another thing in abundance in St. John’s is history–being there totally brought all this Canadian history I learned years ago in school back to mind. Karen took us to see Signal Hill, a critical lookout point/tower of John Cabot’s time. Since then, it’s played a role in various military conflicts.

I mentioned the hills–yes, St. John’s has pretty hills. Very rugged, very lush, very green and craggy. They rise in little lumps out of the water, or jut from the main land mass into jaggy little shapes. Some of the trails looked amazing, and I’ll want to revisit some time to hike. Oh, and it follows with such hilly topography that the roads are crazy–THEY ARE SO STEEP! And often inadequately marked (to me), so driving seems challenging. Because the land is so steep in places, housing is very tall and skinny; there are sometimes upwards of 3 floors, and the stairs are super narrow. Many houses are all squished together, and very brightly painted–it kinda reminded me of Central American housing.

I’ll have pictures soon. I forgot to get my camera yesterday, so my brother took the photos then. I won’t get his pics until before he leaves in a few days, but today, we’re going to be all touristy, and my camera’s in hand.

More later!

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  1. Hills hills hills! So right now, it’s about … 2pm there? (it’s 10:30am here) Yikes! Too much math. Hope you’re being a super oriental tourist!

  2. Sounds like you’re enjoying it so far. $400/month is friggin’ unbelievable compared to Calgary prices! Also good to hear that the much vaunted hills are as nice as I’ve heard haha.

  3. It’s been lovely thus far, minus the cold, and the fact I haven’t started working yet. The job will either make or break this trip, because really, once it begins, it’s going to dominate the majority of my days…

    We will hopefully see more hills tomorrow. My brother and I are planning an out-of-city trip…

    Hope the bsg thing runs! 🙂

  4. WOW!! Sounds fantastic!! I can see these beautiful pictures. I hope that I can visit one day………..

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