No huge rush to get up. Our flight is at 12:55. Though we want to take proper advantage of our lounge time. A couple of hours should do.
We have business class tickets. When I was booking, I noticed they didn’t cost that much more and jokily suggested buying them to Dolores. To my surprise, she agreed. Thought it might be a good experience for the kids.
Air Canada doesn’t have its own lounge. They use United’s. It’s pretty small. But they have bourbon and bits and bobs of food. We all tuck in. Even Andrew. I worry that beer is his only source of calories. Sorry, I was forgetting whiskey. All in liquid form, anyway.
I have a window seat and get a good view of the US rolling slowly below. Quite varied. Sometimes dusty brown. Others, the lush green of innumerable deeply wooded islands.
The kids are really enjoying the extra legroom.
“For once, I’ve more than enough space.” Lexxie says.
“It’s you own fault for being over 2 metres tall.”
“I think you’ll find it’s you and Mum who are to blame for that.”
“I’ll have another whiskey.”
“That’s your answer to everything, isn’t it?”
“You say that as if it’s some sort of problem.”
“Right. You’re in denial, Dad.”
“Let’s not go through this again.”
Immigration is no problem Once I’ve shown them the photo of that stupid form thing we had to fill in. How I love modern travelling.
Our bags, again, beat us to the carousel. Soon we’re in our hotel. Our, frankly, ludicrously expensive hotel. At least the view isn’t bad. Looking onto the harbour and the mountains beyond. As well as part of the multi-fingered downtown high-rise forest.
“Are you hungry, kids?”
“That averages out to a probably.”
“Don’t be stupid, Dad. You can’t average it out, and if you did, it would be possibly. Let’s just you and me go.” Lexxie is very logical.
“There’s a Japanese place just down the street.”
That’ll do for me. Nothing too heavy and lots of little bits. Just what I feel like.
And that’s what we get. Sushi, tempura, spring rolls, gyozas. All the usual stuff. It’s pretty good. Dependable stuff, Japanese food.
“This is very similar to what we eat in Kokusai, Lexie.”
“It’s called Japanese food.”
“I know that. I mean the specific bits of Japanese food we’re eating.”
“Chill out, Dad. Don’t overthink everything.”
“Just shut up and eat, Dad.”
There aren’t many other customers. It is pretty early, mind. Just after 6 PM. Two teenage girls speaking Spanish with someone who I assume is their grandmother. Every now and again the girls lapse into English when talking to each other. Now that’s interesting. Their Spanish sounded perfect to me. Clearly bilingual, just like my kids.
Fed, we head for the 7 11. It’s down a fucking steep hill, Lexxie and I discover. Magic. And it doesn’t sell beer. At least the sandwich selection is different from the US branches.
I limp far behind Lexxie up the monster hill. It’s a double whammy of ankle and lungs. At least he’s considerate enough to wait for me at the summit of Everest.
The view from the hotel is even better now. We can see the downtown skyline and part of the harbour, its water studded with cargo ships. It’s spectacular as the sun sets. And captivating after dark, as car lights dance across the bridge.
Andrew has to do without any beer. Poor thing. He could have had some, but he couldn’t. be arsed to walk to the liquor store.
“You couldn’t have wanted it that much, then. I made it up that fucking hill from the 7 11 on my damaged ankle.” (Definitely not broken, in case you’re interested.)
“Shut up, Dad. I can do without your gloating. And self-pity.”
“Are you hungry yet?” As he seems a bit grumpy, I change the subject.
No change there, then.
“What did you say, Dad?”
“He’s saying out loud what he’s thinking again, Andrew.”
“Yes, Dad. You do it all the time.”
“You’ve never mentioned that before.”
“Yes, I have. Several times.”
No, you haven’t you lying little fucker.
“You’re doing it again. And yes, I did.”
We watch some TV and later nibble on some sandwiches. Luckily, I’ve still got some whiskey to chase down the food.
I realise we haven’t visited a pub or brewery today. Now there’s a record. I can’t imagine we’ll hold out very long tomorrow. The joy of having a check-in bag.
Mr. Knacked is the only one accompanying me on my route to sleepland.
Kisokoma Japanese Restaurant
805 W Broadway #112,
BC V5Z 1K1.