Tarun and Yogita's Travel Blog

Let the world change you, so you can change the world!

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Location: New Delhi, India

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Tuesday, September 19, 2006

The Half Marathon at Lake Chelan

I finished my second half marathon at Lake Chelan this Saturday on September 16th, 2006. This time I did it with Tarun and that was the only motivating factor for me to keep running after 8 miles or so. I am not sure what it was that kept me from going after I finished my 11th mile but Tarun kept me going. I am very sure that if he was not around I would have walked the last 2 miles.

Nevertheless, Lake Chelan is pretty not unlike most places in Washington. But unlike any other place I have seen before driving to Lake Chelan and around it we can see lots of lush orchards of Red (the famous) Washington apples, pears, peaches and even the pretty vineyards. This was quite a beautiful site for me I had never seen fruit laden trees in a plantation before. We went camping at the Lake Chelan State Park with another couple, Vishal and Neha. It was quite some fun. We pitched a single tent for the four of us and spent two freezing cold nights there. Vishal and Neha did quite well in their races winning them in their age groups. I tried for the first time in my life driving a motor boat in the Lake Chelan. Though at a snail pace, I had a lot of fun. We all had lots of high calorie food and made up for more than what we lost in the half marathon.

Chelan is a very small town which can be covered on foot (or at least it appeared so). I will remember it forever as a place where I ran the last half marathon before leaving the US for good. After all for me a half marathon is quite some distance to run ...

Wednesday, September 13, 2006

93.1 Red FM Vancouver

Yes this Indian Radio Channel (at least the name and frequency is the same) is on FM in Vancouver and it plays punjabi and bollywood music. We tuned into it by accident as soon as we entered Canada.

I am not sure if I can strike a good contrast of Vancouver with Seattle or even compare it but I felt Vancouver to be a bigger Seattle. It is closer to the Pacific, has bigger waterfront, taller buildings, bigger Lookout Tower (than Space Needle) more diversity and night life.(beats Seattle hands down) and a decent punjabi community.

This is Vancouver during evening time.

Not a great picture but just an idea.

First night, spent time in the lookout tower (the above pic is from that), roamed around downtown, ate Ethiopian food with a nice aromatic tea, saw a stage show of improvisors (which was really funny and superb) at the Vancouver Fringe Festival at Granville Island and then took a walk at probably one of most happening streets in Vancouver, the Granville Street. The whole street was packed with people who were enjoying the night life of Vancouver. At a theater on Granville Street we saw this ...

Nice isn't it...

That day was long and next day we had to wake up early to visit Stanley Park, most famous Park in Vancouver. The motivation for getting up early and run around Stanley Park was not to enjoy an amazing weather and view at the Vancouver waterfront (a bit more than 8 km) that Stanley Park offered but was Chholey Bhature that we had planned to enjoy at the Punjabi Market in Vancouver.

Some pictures from Stanley Park...

the black squirrel ...

and the lady in the water... I thought this was a nice sculptureAfter this run it took us a long time to get ready for another long day and it was already 11 when we reached punjabi market. This was really a let down. We were hoping for a huge market but it was not more than 2 blocks and really small shops. But someone told us that a bigger punjabi community was in Surrey, B.C. By 11:45, we were inexplicably hungry but were sitting in a little punjabi restaurant and waiting to enjoy our Chhole Bhature ... yummy and parantha and pakore and chai.

We then visited two nice Gurudwara and walked quite a lot and finally before leaving we checked out a Science Center (also saw an awesome IMAX movie, Bugs!) and a brief walk to the waterfront again for a quick pasta. Drive between Vancouver and Seattle is sweet but on the way back we were tired.

That was a trip to the fourth country apart from South Korea, US and India of course.

Friday, September 08, 2006

...and a brief stop at the Sin City

As you step in you realize why its called the Sin City. Las Vegas could not evoke much of our interest. Gambling, artificiality, alcohol, mindless shopping and spending and all the other vices which are the second name for Las Vegas, we cannot relate to those.

I would still like to appreciate this man made wonder, however negative, amidst a scorching desert. Desert and many canyons of Nevada do appealed more aesthetically to us, but to thousands (or more) of other tourists the Sin City was the place to be. About hundred metres away from LV, it seems as if there is no life on this part of the earth but in the city it is pandemonium. Another feather in the cap of Las Vegas is the cultural promotion of exhibitions, stage shows, art and performances. You can find world's biggest names in art performing there. Each night there is a show at every casino and every hotel.

Alas, the naturality and innocence is lost somewhere in the colossus.