Saturday, December 27, 2008

It was a white holiday

The holiday season was a little hit and miss for us. We had plans to visit friends for Christmas Eve - they cooked a 20 pound turkey and everything. We never made it.

Our plan was to take the Skytrain over to their place as they are across town from us. Snow laden trees fell on the tracks and stopped the trains from running. Then, when they did start again, they were stopping intermittently due to snow and ice in the switches on the tracks. This meant lengthy delays and fewer trains running. At no time was Translink ever able to tell us simply when we could expect another train - they just kept suggesting that we find alternate means of transportation to our destination. I'm not sure how they hope to cope with the Olympics, given that it is also a winter event. This kind of performance is not going to make the world proud of Vancouver. But I digress. Being the day it was, we also were not able to get a taxi and the bus schedules were all notably off due to the weather. Our only option was to retreat.

Things were running smoother the next day (Christmas) although it still took us twice as long to take the train to our destination, due to mid-station stops. We were also able to get a taxi to the train station. We did have a great dinner, gifts were exchanged and the host decided to give us a ride home at the end, rather than dealing with the train again. (I'm sure it's fine now, by the way.)

So overall, we had a 'white christmas' like so many people always wish for. This year, I think people got a bit more than they thought they were asking for. Honestly, if the train had been able to keep running, I would probably not have been that impacted by it, and it is fun when the snow is coming down hard and fast. When people's kids have grown up a bit, I would warn them of all the stories they will hear about the 'Christmas of '08' and how the snow was 'up to here' (hold hand up to your chest) in Vancouver of all places.

At least, that's the outcome I hope for, because it implies that winter goes back to normal for us next year. If this becomes a regular event, Vancouver is in trouble.

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