We made it!  I am writing as I sit in my hotel room in Vancouver , B.C. Canada .  We had a remarkably smooth trip this morning.  We awoke at 4:45 to a harsh alarm clock, after barely sleeping.  The grogginess quickly wore off as we realized, this was it…the day we leave.  Loading our 13 bags of luggage proves to be our biggest issue.  We managed somehow, with 4 sleepy children, to make the 6:00 shuttle.  After arriving at the airport, the international desk was a quick 15 minutes.  On to security where we had all of our bags checked, shoes off, laptops removed, and bodies scanned.  We got to our gate a full hour and ½ before our 8:45 flight.  As we were waiting, Peter was watching planes take off from out of the window.  He was fascinated and we enjoyed his enthusiasm. 

We boarded the plane and were off by 9:00.  Both William and Peter were first time flyers and gave the thumbs up as they watched the ground disappear.  On route, we got “cloud updates” from Peter who peaked under his shade to monitor our progress.  First, it was hazy, then a total white fog, and finally we broke through the clouds.  We saw the Rocky mountain peaks beneath us covered in snow.  The 5 ½ hour flight landed on time and we made it through customs without a hitch.  Finding a taxi, or two, that could hold all of us, and our luggage caused a 20-minute delay but eventually we made the 30-minute trip to the hotel. 

Our rooms were ready so we made a dash for the elevator and warmer clothes…it is 50 degrees here!  We had our first food of the day…no meals served on our flight only peanuts…so we were starved!  I just woke up from my nap and I am a much happier camper now.  The dark clouds and wind tell us that it has been stormy here, but now the sun has broken through.  The mountains are visible in the distance over the water.  It is still windy and nippy with the threat of rain however, it is a beautiful city.  Our hotel has a balcony on the 16th floor with a spectacular view of the area.  We plan to be out this evening and sight see for a brief time before finding a place to eat, then to bed to crash.  Our trip to Victoria begins at 8:45 in the morning!

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