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Sunday, August 12, 2012

Day 55 and 56: Calgary

Calgary Take Two was more of a social weekend with family than a scamper round the city's major attractions. In fact, much of what we learned about the city came of sitting looking out over the Calgary skyline from the vantage point of Matthew and Lynne's 7th floor condo - glass of wine in hand. It was taking armchair travel to a whole new level. After nearly two months on the road it was the kind of travel that a girl could get used to...Well, for a weekend, anyway.

What we learned was that that skyline spelled 'OIL' in a big way. The extent to which Jessica is playing David to Encana's Goliath was brought home to us as we compared the latter's imposing new glass-paneled premises to Jessica's sweet little Rosebud homestead. What we also learned is that come 'hail' or high water, the flame atop Calgary's equivalent of the CN tower does not go out.

And hail it did on Sunday night - the sky pitching down golfball-sized stones that dented the cars on the street below (luckily Ruby was parked up underground, yet another close hailstone call averted...) and gave a whole new meaning to the word 'forklift'. But still that flame - no doubt lit in honour of our visit to the city, or perhaps to mark the end of the London Olympics - burned on. Around it, and for a good number of hours, lightning flashed and the earth rumbled. Perched up there on the 7th, we felt like we had front row seats at a magnificent sound and light spectacle.

Okay, so we didn't spend our WHOLE weekend in Calgary looking out from on high. We left our perches. We got around. We took in the city's architectural features old and new. We ambled along the graceful Elbow River. We drank good micro-brewery beer on epicurean 17th Avenue. We enjoyed the company of Kathy and Jim over AAA Alberta steaks, and the company of Joel over Crab Louie. And brother and sister sat on the balcony and strummed their guitar and ukulele respectively, working up a repertoire and dreaming of a big bright busking sibling-duo future.

Okay, so it was all pretty armchair as weekends go. But it was all pretty good too. As we sat watching the closing ceremonies of the Olympics in yet another trending Calgary drinking establishment, life was feeling as jambalaya as, well, as the Spice Girls' reunion performance in the shadow of the London Eye.

Thanks to Matthew and Lynne for a great weekend in Calgary. Come
Monday, we were on our way back to Carmella...And to dry out.