29 March 2010

Happy 7 years!

Seven years ago, today, Ed and I got married. At the ceremony and luncheon that followed, we had just over 60 guests, mainly family and some close friends, . Then we had another 40 to 50 people, our work mates and paddling buddies, join us for a house party that night. The majority of the day was spent with our bridal party - Yvette, Jenny, Lizza, Josh, Kei, and Mark. Ed and I rented a huge SUV that can fit all of us. Ed drove, I sat up front with him, and everyone else squeezed into the two rows of seats in the back. I remember laughing a lot throughout the day. We had so much fun.

Main things I remember about our wedding day...
- The cherry blossoms had started to bloom.
- It was cold that day! But for the photos, we had to look like it was a nice summer day.
- Sipping congee through a straw. This was my breakfast.
- As my dad and I finished walking down the aisle, Ed stood there a few feet from me with a smile on his face, his mind in la-la land, his gaze towards some faraway place only he could see. He totally ignored my dad and me until I called his name to bring him back to reality!
- The tears during the vows! I think the whole room was crying.
- The founders of Navarik (where I work) - Bill, Marty, Dono, and Orvin - bought a keg of beer for our house party. I remember getting *very* tipsy that night. Fun, fun!
- I didn’t want the day to end. Ed had to drag me out of the house party, into the huge SUV, so we can spend the night at the hotel.

And since that day, Ed and I have been continuing to have fun together. There are ups and downs, just like all relationships, but the ups certainly outnumber the downs by a large margin. Traveling and paddling have been the main things we do for fun. And after seven years of living the carefree life of DINKs, we will be welcoming, in a few months, a baby into our little family. I’m sure the next seven years will be different but just as fun, if not more.

Thank you, Ed, for being my partner in life. I’m looking forward to many more happy anniversaries. I love you!

2 March 2010

2010 Olympics, part 3

Week 2 of the Olympics was more quiet for me and Ed. We had tickets to one more event - the 4-man bobsleigh on Saturday, Feb 27. I was grateful for the break, though. I was exhausted from the late nights spent downtown watching hockey games in pubs and the victory ceremonies we attended. I watched the Olympics from my couch for a few days. My cats enjoyed having me home, too.

Then just like that, it was Thursday and we were at the airport picking up Mon and Natascha, our out-of-town guests. Mon is an old university friend of mine and my brother’s. Ed and I were a little late picking them up because the women’s gold medal hockey game was on and we wanted to see it to the very end. Canada won, yay! My brother and niece who live in Edmonton were also in town to spend time with Mon. We all enjoyed a delicious dinner in Richmond then went to the Richmond O Zone, which is Richmond’s celebration site for the Olympics. The Holland Heineken House is there and there are concerts every evening. The Heineken House was full so we couldn’t go in and the band playing that night was Wintersleep, a Canadian indie rock band from Nova Scotia.
Out of town guests

On Friday, Mon and Natascha spent the day in Whistler watching the alpine skiing. Ed and I, with several of Ed’s co-workers, headed to a pub downtown after work to watch the Canada-Slovakia game. Mon and Natascha joined us at the pub. Watching a must-win hockey game in a pub in Canada is definitely an experience. Team Canada was able to hang on to a one-goal lead to win the game and advance to the gold medal game against the US. Whew! And the big bonus was Canada won four medals that evening - one in women’s curling and three in short track speed skating. Downtown was going nuts! Everyone was so happy.

On Saturday, Day 16 of the Olympics, Ed and I took the bus to Whistler to watch heats 3 and 4 of the 4-man bobsleigh event. We enjoyed some crepes for breakfast, walked around Whistler Village, then rode the gondola up to the Whistler Sliding Centre. Heat 3 was just about to begin when we got to the venue. We decided to walk along the track to watch the bobsleds as they go zooming by. The higher up the track we went (closer to the start area), the easier it was to take pictures of the bobsleds because they haven’t reached their top speeds yet. But the last three turns before the finish, the bobsleds were just a blur as they went by. It’s very exciting watching them live. There’s something about the speed or the danger of going that fast on an icy track.
Canada 2 at turn 12 Ed and Liezel at the Games

Sunday, Mon and Natascha headed back to the US. It was such a short vist but lots of fun. Today was the last day of the Olympics and the whole city was gripped with anticipation of the gold medal hockey game, Canada vs USA. The game started at noon and people started lining up at 9am outside pubs and restaurants to watch the game. You could hear a collective cheer every time Canada scored a goal. The game went to overtime and everybody held their breath. Then Sidney Crosby scored the winning goal and the entire city went crazy. In fact, the whole country went crazy. Wow, what a moment!

Ed and I then settled on the couch to watch the Closing Ceremony. We were both sad that the big party was coming to an end. It was such a great experience for both of us. We will miss the atmosphere and the energy the city had during the Olympics. I saw acts of kindness everywhere. The Olympics brought out the best in us and I think that’s the real gift of these Games. I’m so happy that I was here when the Olympics came to town. I’m extremely proud of Vancouver and feel very lucky to be living here.