Part 4: Fairmont Hot springs, Weddings and Sunburn…..
So life’s been pretty busy of late and I feel bad for neglecting this little travel blog of mine, but that’s just how life has unfolded of late. So let’s get down to business ay?
Part 4: Fairmont Hot springs, Weddings and Sunburn…..
So the morning after the night before hit and before I really knew what was going on I was saddled up in the fusion with Juzzlington driving and the 3 retarded musketeers in the peanut gallery. A nice cool day and a spot of rain made the drive out of Banff a pretty relaxing way to recover. We stopped off at a little riverside park spot for smoke break and actually got a chance to catch up with Liam and his soon to be brother in law Trevor. For such a place so close to the highway the water was as clear as I’ve ever seen and the silence was unreal. And surprisingly enough through the forest the whole thing was backed by a snow-capped mountain range. The place was insane.
We jumped back in the cars and took to the road again, heading off we cruised our way through the hills, mountains and amazing countryside to get to Fairmont. It didn’t seem that long and we were arriving in the little town that would be home for the next 5 days. We moved into the house and luck be have it I pulled couch duties in the lounge room on the top floor. It was a pretty damn comfy and big couch so I really don’t mind and was in throwing distance of the kitchen. All the more benefit to me. First order of business was to get some proper nosh for the 5 days. We headed into town and had our first meeting with Sobeys, the supermarket chain. Daaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaam that place was huge. We stocked up, plenty of meats, plenty of snacks and more bottles of Yukon Jack. The place was cheap so it was kind of hard not to. After settling in to suss out the star wars game on the WII and relax for a bit we headed over to Chelsey’s parents place to say hi n meet everyone. I thought we would have to go via river boat or husky sled or something but sadly we just had to walk about a km down the road. We arrived to be greeted as part of the family from Oz. An amazing little house backing onto one of the myriad of golf courses that makes up Fairmont Hot springs. The Grill was going with burgers and Dan was hard at work making them smell awesome. After a quick greeting I moved inside to meet Marlene and Aunty Mo and the rest of the family. This was going to be an awesome week. We got stuck into some burgers and some Yukon’s and caught up on the adventures. Got to know how surrogate host family and learnt the general lay of the land for our surroundings. After an interruption by a deer and its fawn cruising around in the backyard(which was literally the backyard) It wasn’t long before we were heading back to the house and settling in as to be prepared for the wedding the next day. Being in the state that I was I though bugger it and continued to drink. Somehow it came up in topic about shaving one’s head and I ended up parked in the bathroom with Rob shaving my head the first time since high school. According to some it looks like I joined the marines while I was overseas.
Banana Waffles and Maples syrup (of course) was the kick-start to the day and whiles some slept in and relaxed others pottered around and got ready for the day ahead. As we all started to muster the doorbell rang and our man Nate was soon amongst. A friend of Jonnos and Robs, the guy moved to Canada a whiles back and I hadn’t seen him since he was last in Adelaide. We had a quick drink to kick-start the shiznit and I, Rob, Josh n Nate made our way down to the Wasylyk’s house in the Narff mobile. There was a slightly disconcerting bit here about a crack in the windshield and a deer but that’s another story for another time. We bowled into the backyard to find everyone setting up and got told to come back in a bit because nothing was ready yet. So off to the Golf course clubhouse we went….naturally the only logical place we could get a cold beer without walking too far.
We settled in and just took in the view and the taste of ice cold beer. 1 turned into 2 and soon it was 3 then it was shit….were late for the wedding. We would have to be the only people in the world that can be 200 meters from the wedding and still be late. We grabbed our beers and headed for the wedding again, making a quiet but not unnoticed entry, josh got a telling to by Mo for bringing a beer.
We took our seats and soon it was kicking off. The main reason I had undergone this journey was upon me and it couldn’t have been more awesome. Liam and Chelsey got married in a little gazebo thing in her parents half backyard half course with baby deer’s running around in the background and a snow-capped mountain bordering an evergreen forest as a backdrop. The sun stayed out and in fact ended up getting pretty dang warm, but that just gave us more measure to hook into the cans. Before I could really get wrapped up in the awesome, Chelsey’s dog (I can’t remember his nameL) came in wearing a little tuxedo and a top hat playing the vital role as the ring bearer. Too cool for school I tells ya!
With much applause, smile and tears, Chelsey became Mrs Liam Schulze.
We had a bit of time to kill before the reception so it was back to the house for a few more beers and then off to the reception at 6 at the golf club.
The usual festivities began at the Golf club, much feasting, dancing, getting harassed by aunty Mo if your name is josh and drinking a plenty. The happy new couple ushered in their celebrations with their first dance to jack Johnson’s better together. A song that pulled the heart strings and made me think of home.
With things wrapping up we gathered the troops and headed back to the house to continue on the party and drink well into the night. There was a minor discrepancy with one of the local lads giving Josh a bit of a hard time, and my heart goes out to him the poor soul. Rob and I stayed out of view but could be seen by josh as this chap gave him a hard time about something at a toe to toe kind of distance. It settled down quickly but not before Rob took the liberty of explaining that were we come from we look after each other and he would have no hesitation in beating him, dragging him down stairs, kicking him out and then stealing his wallet. Much to my amusement the guys’ girlfriend thought it better to head home and get her boyfriend to safety before he got himself in trouble. It was a sad affair to tarnish the day to a certain extent but it solidified the fact that we would indeed have another amusing story to tell. Well into the wee hours I passed out on the couch as one does faded quietly into the next day.
We mustered in the morning, wait, and no, scratch that it was more like lunch and made our way back to the Wasylyk’s house to see how things were progressing. After partaking in some powerade, red bull and a hearty breakfast we decided that today wasn’t going to hold many activities wise. Things at the house were a little chaotic so a few of us decided to go on a bit of a scenic drive and see what we could find.
Over the other side of the lake, we stopped at a few look outs and took some photos of the surrounds. A couple of Bald Headed Eagles buzzed the tower…aka my head and we kind of just lapped up the serenity of the place. We moved to another spot further down the road and got a better look at the lake and railroad before we noticed we were being watched. Josh’s demonstration of eagle stance had clearly got their attention and the 2 in the tree sat and looked at us with amusement. I have to admit, when one of them took off and launched into flight along the edge of the cliff in front of us, it was a pretty awe inspiring scene. Those buggers are huge as well….
After a couple of hours just cruising around sussing things out, we headed back to the house to settle in for the nights feast. I had quite the appropriate meal, a dinner plate sized steak, another dinner plate full of veggies n potatoes and a few glasses of Yukon.
I can’t remember how we spent the morning of the 4th day but a few of us decided to spend the arvo up in the actual Fairmont hot springs. Not far from our house was a natural hot spring that had been built up into a local swimming pool. A complete new experience to me, the water was being pumped straight from the spring into the pool. This place was truly amazing. Clear blue water and plenty of grass around, with the sun out the place was pretty busy. Again the whole thing sat on a backdrop of forest leading to snow-capped mountains. Now, different pools had different temperatures and we spent most of the day in the normally heated pool the biggest one. At some point I ventured off and tried the hotter pools which were basically the size of a small spa, that didn’t last real long either as the water was hot enough to cook a lobster. Funnily enough, that kind of what happened to me. Because I didn’t give much thought to it, being in the water all afternoon in the sun, lured into a false sense of security by the snow, I got cooked like a damn lobster. And I mean horridly…
Much to the amusement of Rob and Chelsey I was raw. It kind of stood out a ton more cause of my new militaristic hair cut as well but I don’t think I’ve been that burnt in a long long time. It was all good. By the time we got back, master chef in disguise rob had been hard at work and we settled in for our last group meal together on the balcony. Crazy roasted chicken, Yukon jacks, Caesars, smokes, a crazy view and a good time made a for a fitting end to this leg of our journey. We drank and talked our way into the night before packing up our gear for our early as hell start on the road back to Calgary. Sadly this would be the last time Juzzy and I would see the boys on this journey.
We arose at some entirely dirty hour and packed up our gear. That poor little fusion didn’t know what hit it. All 5 of us jammed our asses back into it and headed off for Banff to drop Rob, Josh and Kaos off and then myself and Juz had to continue on to Calgary for our next flight. Upon departure of Fairmont, the 3 in the back basically passed out and it was up to me and Josh to be on wildlife watch. Surprisingly considering the form we were in, we managed to spot a timber wolf just cruising the highway doing his own thing.
Then it happened. We passed a parking bay and saw a big brown blob reading the information sign (I didn’t know bears could read). I yelled out bear!! Waking the 3 in the back seat and instantly convinced Juz to turn the car around so we could have a better look. We pulled into the parking bay just in time to see a brown bear waddling across the bridge. Apparently the water is too cold in summer even for bears. A couple of quick photos of basically a bears arse and we were back on way to Banff. We pulled up at the voyager Inn to the let the lads in the back out, took a group shot and bid our farewells. Safe journeys were wished to all and almost instantly we were on the road to Calgary.
It was strange feeling hitting the road again, not knowing what was ahead of us and what adventures were ahead but I didn’t have much time to think about it as I was too wrapped up at taking in the scenery that we had missed on the original drive to Banff on the midnight run. For a highway it was pretty damn amazing. The whole thing was surrounded by forests and crystal clear rivers and creeks. Sadly the only wildlife we encountered on the way back was more deer. Something that we had seen in abundance.
We checked the keys and GPS in at the car rental counter, boarded our flight and settled in for our flight. Take off was pretty straight forward and soon we were on our way to Houston. Somehow our flight got slowed down and we got to Houston late. We realised before we landed that we were going to have to do a mad bolt through an airport that we had never seen before. This was going to be fun. We landed, and almost instantly I could feel the heat. Still donning the jeans and hoody that I had on in Canada; I stripped off in the causeway and prepared to bolt through the airport. 15 mins later and a monorail ride later we literally ran into our terminal to find out that not only was It jam packed, our connecting flight that we bolted to catch was running late but the air con also didn’t work. I swear my balls melted to my jocks it was that hot in there…..but not to worry, only an hour to kill…FUCCCCCCCCCCCCCCCCCCK!
At the time it sucked but soon enough we bored our next flight and were on our way. The next leg of our journey was nearly here. It was time to hit up Memphis, humidity and all things Elvis.
until next time friends………
Being that google maps doesnt like me at the moment, heres a short video i made instead 🙂