On my way from Sydney to Montreal, I made a stop in Vancouver.

This year’s IEEE international conference on Multimedia Signal Processing was hosted in Montreal, Canada. I decided to break up the long flight and make a stop in Vancouver, to visit Maria Gabriella and Thiago, our dear Brazilian friends who recently moved there. After a 15-hour flight next to a guy with the brightest laptop display in the world (a Maglite pales in comparison), I arrived early on Saturday. Gabi and Thiago welcomed me to the rainy Vancouver, and we went for a nice breakfast. In the afternoon, the weather cleared up, and we went to Granville Island. This unique market is set under the Granville Street Bridge, and hosts both crafts and grocery markets. Most importantly, there is a micro-brewery, which has a nice selection of beer — what better place to have lunch?

Despite a not-so-great weather forecast, we drove to Whistler Mountains the next day. This turned out to be a great decision, as we were rewarded with three seasons of weather — snow, rain, sunshine — which highlighted the beautiful scenery. It was the last day of the hiking season where the peak ride was open, and once we arrived up there, we knew why. The temperature was below zero, and we were welcomed by some heavy snowfall. Luckily, my Brazilian friends had already spent a couple of years in Calgary, so they have seen worse weather, and we decided to go forward with our initial plan of hiking back down to the middle station. After a first 30 minutes through fog and snow, the clouds slowly gave way to the sun, and the hike went from “nice” to “spectacular”. My two highlights were a family of Marmots which showed up along the hike, as well as the breathtaking scenery at Cheakamus Lake.

A big thanks to Gabi and Thiago for being such great hosts. Looking forward to showing you around in Sydney!