My ‘Wheels’

Finally arrived at Calgary Airport five minutes ahead of schedule.

A very small airport, that was totally deserted – Perfect for a quick pass through immigration, or so I thought…

Canadian officials thought it very odd that I was travelling alone, not meeting anyone, and had no family here… I am sure I am not the first.

They were happy once I explained that I was taking photos for personal use, and not on an assignment, so I went on my way.

I collected the excellent GyPSy Guide GPS system (more on this in a couple of days when I have really put it through it’s paces), and went to collect my rental car for this part of the trip.

In true US/Canadian style, I was given a huge ‘Bus’ of a car;

03malibureview2010.jpg

A 2010 Chevrolet Malibu – Big V6 automatic… That doesn’t really go around corners very well!

It also has a very fetching ‘Beige’ interior – mmmm.

25malibureview2010.jpg

After lots of swearing and head scratching I eventually found my first hotel ‘Hotel Sandman’ in downtown Calgary – To be fair to my navigation skills, building a tram link along the road that the Satnav was telling me I needed to go wasn’t really me fault!

It is now 06:20 Calgary time – I have been awake since 04:00, but can’t wait to go and explore.

OSX 10.6 at the zoo

Such a shame I can’t do anymore to remove the cage in the background, but I am still pretty pleased to capture a Snow Leopard.

Taken at Calgary Zoo, Alberta, CA.

Wait and Weight

All started well – Clare and I left in plenty of time to allow for the Monday morning ‘fun’ on both the A421 and the M1, traffic was fine.

We then got a text about 10 miles or so outside of LHR from the excellent Tripit.com to tell us that the outward flight to Calgary had been delayed by five hours, and wouldn’t leave until 18:15, arriving at 20:30 (Canadian time).

Fortunately AirCanada fly three times a day from Heathrow, and managed to swap my ticket to the 16:15 flight without charge… Cool.

I had to wait an hour or so before I could check in my luggage though, but free WiFi at Starbucks meant that that wasn’t the end of the world.

It turns out that my case was over weight (you try being a photographer going to Canada for the first time and try to get down to 22kg!) – I had weighed it at home, but obviously balancing a case on bathroom scales isn’t accurate enough!

Again, the AirCanada staff were excellent and allowed me two hand luggage bags, which dropped my main case enough to allow it to be checked in without any additional charge.

Bizarrely, Westjet (my internal flight operator) allows more weight, so I will have no problems there next week.

Waiting by the gate now – Just been informed that all seats onboard have power sockets that work with the iPad without using an adapter… Bonus.

Catch you all on the other side.

– Posted using BlogPress from my iPad

Location:United Kingdom

Time to get packing

So, Canada is just around the corner now:

I think I am all set for what I am doing once I arrive – I now just need to get everything packed.

I am pretty sure I will be able to find WiFi at least once every other day, so Blogging should be fine.

I am planning to use the iPad wherever possible to Blog from – additional snippets may be added from the iPhone (both iOS device are running BlogPress).

I may also post to twitter occassionally: I will use the #WestyCA hash tag on the relevant posts.

I am also taking the Macbook Pro with me; predominantly for photo back-up purposes, but also to process an HDR images that I take along the route.

The Macbook Pro is running Mars Edit in case I feel like doing something slightly more ambitious with the post.

Now time to go and find that suitcase…

My full itinerary can be seen here:

Canada Plans

– Posted using BlogPress from my iPad