Day 57 – 61: It’s a bird, it’s a plane…it’s the Northern Lights!?

IMGP5844 IMGP5847 IMGP5858Sunny and -15 has never been something I looked forward to, but here in High Level sunny and -15 is too gorgeous to pass up. The sun is up on my way to school and even there to keep me company on my way home. It’s shocking to think that when I first arrived we had as little as 6 hours of sunlight a day, and now this. I’m bummed out I won’t be around for the days where the sun is never ending and remains in the sky even into the early morning. I guess that means I’ll have to come back!

I realized I didn’t say much about my adventures down south a few weekends ago and thought I would throw in some facts to remind myself of in the future. I got to road trip it to Calgary (roughly a 12hr drive) with some pretty awesome people, thanks Sandi and Jake! We got to explore Calgary (China town was AMAZING. We had the most amazing baked goods at this adorable little bakery, and I tried dim sum for the first time. Overall it was a great experience, and the food was all beyond delicious (photos for proof!). I got to wander and take lots of photos with the photography master himself, Jake. We explored downtown Calgary and even made friends with a spunky, little squirrel.

Then we had a day trip to Banff to visit the Rockies. We got to visit the shops, eat at the fantastic TeX Mex restaurant, Magpie and Stump, and even hit up the hot springs! Something about being in a pool full of geyser water outside in freezing temperatures was so exhilarating and felt amazing on the body. I recommend everyone do it at least once in their lives. We also got to take a trip up Sulphur Mountain on the famous Banff gondola. Needless to say, I didn’t realize just how high we were going until we were on our way up the mountain. I have a fear of heights, so I felt pretty victorious when I reached the top (going back down was an adventure…) I made sure to snag a shirt and sticker from the gift shop afterward, both well deserved in my opinion.

After our amazing trip to Banff, we said goodbye to Calgary and traveled to Edmonton. I was lucky enough to catch a nasty bug while there so spent most of the time at the convention or in bed. On the plus side, I got to eat French toast for breakfast almost every morning at the hotel restaurant (seriously the best breakfast food.) We made sure to visit the West Edmonton mall, and even caught the sea lions after a show! Although it wasn’t my first time there, it’s still like a giant maze with all those stores and sections. I’ll stick to the malls back home. Then I hitched a ride home with some lovely people from the school and got to relax and recover for the rest of the weekend. Overall, an amazing trip. I’m excited I got to explore even more of this beautiful province.

In more recent news, last weekend I had the pleasure of going out with some wonderful friends and eating the most amazing food since I left home (closely tied is the dim sum we had in Calgary.) I ordered the lobster Mac and cheese. I know, sounds like it could be a disaster. Yet it turned out to be a delicious and beyond filling meal. After packed away most of it, we all bought dessert. I had the most heavenly, out of this world pecan pie EVER. It was topped with fresh fruit, homemade vanilla ice cream and chunks of chocolate (did I mention the pecans were soaked in brandy?!) I’d be lying if I said I wouldn’t be going back for another before heading home.

Lately things have been so hectic that time is moving even quicker than usual. I have only five weeks left here in High Level and then I grab my flight back to St. John’s. I was afraid I would head back out East without seeing the Northern Lights, and then Saturday blew me out of the water (in this case, the almost non existent water of northern Alberta). Around 10:30pm on Saturday night, the sky exploded with the color green. I was so awestruck that I stood outside with my camera in the cold for a while simply staring. The way they move and ripple reminded me of the ocean.

Here’s to the things that take your breath away, here’s to whatever comes next.

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