Two nights ago I finally gave in and took some melatonin. After only 10 h sleep in 4 nights plus two naps that were entirely not helpful I needed to shut the brain down for a solid few hours. I am in general not a fan of those little helpers but I came to a point where I was desperate enough. As a plus I’ve heard that melatonin can give you very weird dreams and my dreams are already weird enough as they are. Thanks, I am covered on that front!
But it worked surprisingly well. 10 dreamless hours later I was fresh and had an entirely satisfying and productive work day. Hey ho it looks like you’re gone, letlag. See you again in two month I guess!
Now that I am working from home today and also am fresh enough, let’s move forward to the more pleasant topic of my wonderful adventures
in Wonderland in Canada and the USA. The reason that Canada is slightly underrepresented here is for the fact that we only spent a few days there whereas we spend a few weeks in the US. First I intended to pack my top 10 into one post but I realized that this would be far too long and so I decided to post two different posts with my top-notch moments divided by geographical region.
So after inviting you to come travel with us for one day and showcasing my least favorite moments from my travels we are finally at the stage where I want to show you my highlights. Today we want to explore the Pacific Northwest a little. Come join me on my adventures, buckle up (it’s the law!) and have fun….
1. Canopy Ziplining Tour – British Columbia, Canada
I love Ziplining! It’s so much fun! We’ve been ziplining last year in California but this year we took the next step and went on a canopy tour. I’ve done some research and found the Adrenaline Zipline Adventure Tours in Sookie just outside Victoria. The tour is very professionally organized and they also borrowed me a head strap for my Go Pro without charging anything for it. We booked the tour two days in advance which I would recommend as the tours were more or less all fully booked.
The tour itself was so much fun. Stefan also joined me, which I highly appreciate as other than me, he is afraid of heights! Our tour guides Gab and Meagan were fun, easy-going and made sure we were safe all the time. They showed us all those little tricks like how to get faster, how to go upside down and also what to avoid like hitting a tree 😛 Going upside down was the best! On one line they took pictures from a camera in one of the trees. Most of what you could see from me was my butt! I didn’t purchase it!
2. Coffee Testing at Starbucks Roastery and Tasting Room – Seattle
Okay okay I might be a little biased as I may be one of the biggest Starbucks lovers ever but the Starbucks Roastery and Tasting Room in Seattle (Home of Starbucks!) brought the whole Starbucks experience on a whole new level. Next to a totally different menu and new exciting coffee beans you can actually taste different sorts of coffee. You can choose between 5 different coffees and three different brewing methods. We chose the package where you get three different coffees brewed with the same brewing method. The coffee was so delicious and the place was so lovely furbished I was close to moving in! Now let’s move onto the baked goodies. I have three words: TO DIE FOR!
Next to the culinary experience you get some cool insights in the coffee roasting process. The staff is very friendly and explains everything in a really nice way. You don’t even have to ask. When you watch they come to you and tell you about it. I was so high on caffeine and (ask Stefan) a tiny tad bouncy after we left the place. I forced Stefan to come back two more times during our stay in Seattle. We also bought two of these charcoal mugs. I am a sucker for Starbucks merchandise!
3. Exploring the Tide Pools – Ruby Beach, Olympic Peninsula
Hands down my favorite place in the world is the beach. Beaches calm me down, excite me, make me thoughtful and just freaking happy all at once. Ruby Beach was awesome. I love the rough sea even more than the crystal clear water. It makes me feel alive! On our first day full day in Forks (I talked about it here) we went to Ruby Beach short after the storm and at high tide. Though it was awesome I wanted to go back the next day at low tide to see the tide pools. At low tide you can walk all the way back to the big rock in the back of the picture above and find all kinds of sea life.
We saw jellyfish, crabs, anemones and mussels. And my absolute favorite: giant pink starfish <3 But it can also be quite dangerous as there is a wicked riptide. And as you can get quite absorbed by what you see the rising tide can cut you from the beach in no time. But you can find tide tables on the internet quite easily. I highly recommend to check them out and plan your trip in advance. Also bring you some coffee, sit down on some driftwood and enjoy the ocean.
Oh and don’t turn your back on the ocean. We spent quite some time on the beach and I can get a bit overexcited. Stefan was sulking a little as he hoped to see an American eagle. But no signs of those birds anywhere. To cheer him up I played eagle for him on the beach running up and down with my jacket half over my head. I didn’t see the giant wave coming and got soaked quite a bit. At least Stefan almost collapsed with laughter. Mission accomplished 😉
4. Exploring the local Brewery Scene
Rumor has it that I don’t actually loath to have a drink or two from time to time. Okay who am I kidding. I enjoy alcoholic beverages and I am not ashamed of it. So when we go out, especially on holiday, it’s not a question of whether we have a drink but of what we drink instead.
Years ago we were those horrible tourists who always would try to find something on the menu they know from home. Now not anymore. I enjoy trying local food and drinks much more. It gives you a true feeling of the way of life in a particular area. Do people enjoy pale ale or are the local drafts more on the bitter side of the taste pallet? It’s quite interesting.
Whilst we were open to the local beer anywhere we went, one was clearly outstanding. We were really lucky to have the Canoe Brew Pub right across the street from where we stayed in Victoria and we went there both evenings of our stay. The food was outstanding and so was their beer. I particularly enjoyed the possibility to order those beer flights. Almost everywhere we went you could order those flights. Awesome! We always shared one and then chose both our favorites. And then have one or two of those 😉
Did I mention that in Bavaria beer officially is a staple? So basically we were just worshipping our roots even on vacation! Who could blame us for that?
5. Taking our Time whenever needed
It might be shocking but I am not one for wasting my time on holiday. I always have ants in my pants and want to explore and do as much as possible. Hanging out in a restaurant, at WholeFoods or at Starbucks totally counts as ‘doing something’ though. But I could never be satisfied with a two-week beach club vacation. Random remark: The German equivalent of ‘ants in the pants’ is ‘to have bumblebees in ones ass’. Just saying!
But when you travel for 4 weeks this is just a pace you can’t keep up for forever. So whenever we felt the need to take it slow we just did so. Like when we spend almost the whole morning on our rooftop terrace in Vancouver eating oatmeal, drinking coffee, talking about everything and taking tons of beautiful selfies <3
Or when we spend the whole morning in our Seattle apartment watching half a season of White Collar (we shamelessly bought all seasons Germany never aired!).
Or when we came back to our house in Kanab at 2 pm, started drinking wine at 3 pm (yes we totally shared that bottle, honey!), ate a pint of Ben and Jerry’s and when I sang along my humiliating playlist (sorry again honey!) So some of the best memories I made come from those days where we just hung out!
Okay I guess now I have talked enough for one day. We did a lot of great things on the first part of the trip but I think those were my highlights. Stefan chose different ones, at least partially. One was the Football Game we went to. I have to confess that I enjoyed the beer and nachos more than the game and not so secretly pretended it was Quiddich in between.
So Part II covering my highlights of the second part of our trip in the Southwest is coming soon. Psssst don’t tell anyone, but the second part of the trip was my favorite 😉
Have a great day, I have to go back to work now!