Is it bad that I know only two words of the Canadian national anthem? Perhaps. Because a couple weeks ago, Bry and I paid a visit to our neighbors of the north in the form of an epic 3-day skiing spectacular!
We left early Friday morning, the Jeep brimming with all our crap. I settled right in to the passenger seat and
navigated us fell asleep all the way there! We arrived at the Cascade Lodge around 2 pm and were able to check in early. Our room was somewhat modest, but did have a kitchenette as well as a fireplace and decent-sized soaking tub so all was well. We tucked away our brews, vodka and nerd ropes safely and decided to head out into the “village” to grab our ski passes for the next day.
You guys. Whistler Village is just so unbelievably charming. Restaurants, bars, shops, all staffed by friendly (and mostly European) folks with lovely accents. Why does EVERYTHING sound more appealing when described by a dreamy, wavy-haired Aussie? WHY?
After we picked up our ski passes, we went back to our hotel to get gussied.
Such a snow bunny right now
Obligatory fireplace shot
Then we naturally headed to the Irish Pub, The Dubh Linn Gate.
The Whiskey Richards performed (get it?) while Bry and I chugged our pints atop teetery bar stools. I did a jig. Because, I mean. Why would I not?
I was dying to go in every. single. store but I had to practice restraint as Bryan does not fare well in crowded shopping situations. Especially at L’Occitane. Or Lululemon. Or anywhere besides REI. He did approve a quick stop-off at my absolute biggest shopping weakness – LUSH. The store was giant, empty and looked after by two of the most charming girls in the world. One had a British accent which of course didn’t hurt their cause.
I picked up one solitary Rose Queen bath bomb and we were on our merry way back to the hotel.
Then we headed down to the hot tub. And can I just say, I haaaate getting in hot tubs at hotels. You start climbing in and everyone is just sitting there, safely under the bubbling water as you uncomfortably stammer down the steps and hope you don’t trip and accidentally show a little nip. Then you settle in and aren’t sure whether you should acknowledge that you have joined the tub, look off to the side or (like me) realize that someone has probably peed (or worse) in there.
That night, we walked around for a bit and then had dinner at Carramba’s.
Bryan can’t believe it!
Really, we just wanted pizza and this place had it. We had a margarita and pesto + goat cheese. Delish.
The next morning we woke up relatively early to attack our one and only day on the slopes. I was a nervous wreck, as the last time I had been on skis was 2 years ago. I reminded myself to keep a positive disposition for as long as possible. It was going to hurt. I would want to quit. I would be cold. So I sucked it up, got myself ready and we headed for the gondy.
The line was soooooo long. As a person who has only skiied at Jackson Hole and Sun Valley, I now realize how spoiled I was with lift lines. Since Whistler is so close to 2 major metropolitan areas, you end up waiting forever.
But the runs are worth it.
Right off the bat, I LOVED the fact that there were so many green runs. For any newbie skier or boarder, this is huge. Jackson Hole literally offers ONE lowly green run and it is super short. Whistler is massive and therefore, offers people a huge variety of terrain to ski. Like a good fiance, Bryan dutifully stuck by my side, reminding me to keep my feet on the ground (I have a tenancy to stand on my tippy toes), not pick up my skis as I turn and USE my poles!
Look at those lovely greens!
I completed the first run and as expected, my muscles were screaming. I cursed the day I decided not to sign up for the free ski fitness classes offered at my gym as I shamelessly bent over my ski poles to try and relieve ANY pain I could from my legs. Despite the fact that I was wearing a modest base-layer, fleece gaiter and ski jacket I was POURING in sweat. And this was only the first run. MAN I wish I had taken a selfie with my hair plastered to my forehead for you guys. But there was no energy. NONE.
After the first run, we headed back up and went in for a hot chocolate. Loosening my boots felt like heaven and I just wanted to stay there. Inside. With slippers and an iPad :).
But I went back out and the next two runs went wonderfully. I was turning like it was my job (if my job entailed making beginner turns on corduroy green runs) and actually having fun! I even did some ski-humps <- air humping while skiing. It’s a skill.
I was also starting to cool down. Mostly because my nerves stopped going ape-sh*t on me, and I started to relax into my boots a little. We had lunch in the most packed lodge of all time, seriously, it was CRAZY.My noodley legs were shot and so it was decided that I would download from the gondy. But we were pretty far from it. So Bryan grabbed a map and routed the easiest way down. What he failed to tell me was that it was about 218921371203 feet away.
I started out okay, making decent turns and keeping my composure somewhat. But after about 5 minutes, my legs were just PISSED at me and I began to lose it. Any “form” I had went completely out the door. My ski tips were crossing and my pace was all over the place. Buckets of sweat were pouring down my chest and back like hot flashes on acid. My nose was a faucet, soaking my gaiter and then immediately freezing to my face.
I skidded to a halt in front of the gondola and realized I was sufficiently upset. I was upset at my legs, my godforsaken boots and most of all – my sweat glands. I hastily muttered a “see ya” to Bryan, snapped my skis off and stumbled onto the gondola. While Bryan skiied for another 40 minutes or so, I rode down to the base, desperately trying to mop the sweat from my brow and pound out the muscle knots in my legs.
Somehow I managed to schlep my skis back to our hotel, all the while muttering and cursing to myself à la Joe Pesci. I peeled the layers of clothing from my body and literally wanted to cast them into the fire. After a quick, warm shower, I slipped into fresh clothes and met Bryan at the Longhorn for my favorite part about skiing – après!
A pitcher later and we we headed over to Citta for another round of drinks. When in Rome, my friends.
Also found THESE BEAUTIES whilst shopping in the vill:
Afterwards, we headed back to our hotel so we could get in a good amount of hot tub time. Well, the tubs were PACKED. It was like cesspool of sweaty snowboarders who smelled like ham and cheese. NO THANKS. Instead, I opted to utilize my new bath bomb in our room and take my relaxi-taxi there.
And the Rose Queen bath bomb is just that. The BOMB.
That night, Bryan and I prepped ourselves to “go out”. 22 year old style. We were determined to prove to our 30-year-old selves that we still had it, goddammit. So, we began by taking naps at 6:30 PM. We each slept for about an hour and then took showers and got ready.
After TEE SHIRT TIME (teehee) we ventured to Village Sushi for dinner. The wait was long – nearly 45 minutes, but the food was great and also a good price. We were seated around 9:30 PM and finished eating around 10:30. Whistler is like, très European. Restaurants still take reservations at 10:30 PM and aren’t pushy about getting their tabes turned. We felt SO cool finishing our dinners at 10:30.
After dinner, we headed to the Irish Pub …again, and had a few burrs. Once we felt sufficiently tipsy, we decided we were juuuust inebriated enough to attack da “club”. So, we went to Garfinkles and immediately ordered a vodka + redbull. As you can probably guess, things just got hilarious. We danced a little, we people watched. Twas magical.
Around 2 AM, we left the club and it was just about that time for SECOND DINNER. I shuffled back to the hotel, drank 7 glasses of water and peeled off my false eyelashes while dear Bryan braved the cold (at my insistence, haha) to pick up a Dominos. I scarcely remember stuffing 4 pieces in my mouth and then promptly PTFO.
I was then rudely reminded of my 30 years of age around 4 AM. Standing up, my head pounded, my feet ached and my hands were trembling. After a 5 minute teeth scrubbing and thorough floss, I popped in my mouth guard like the teeth-grinding, adult that I am. 123894 more glasses of water. 4 IB’s. And sleep. Lots of it.
The next morning we begrudgingly got out of bed and dragged our sorry asses out for coffee. Although I was surly and sick, I felt a pang of pride. I did it!
We went to Purebread for coffee + pastries and my hangover raged as the boy behind the counter told me they didn’t offer brewed coffee. Espresso only. ‘Scuze me, Broseph, an americano IS NOT the same as a slow roasted cuppa drip. You don’t know who are dealing with, sir.
We shared an apricot + vanilla bean scone which was heavenly and then went back to the hotel to get ready for our day. A stop at Starbucks was necessary after our subpar americanos and I gulped down a venti water. We strolled along for some time, popping in various shops and relishing the beautiful day.
We stopped for lunch at the Brew Pub and were lucky enough to get a table right next to the fire! We had a burger with fries and a salad and all I could think about was that it was NAP TIME. I convinced Bry to go back to the hotel where we had a hot tub and snoozed for a couple of glorious hours.
After I woke up, I determined the only cure for the hangover I STILL had was of course, more LUSH products. So, we walked down to the shops and I scored this amazing set which I had a gift card to nearly cover the cost of (thanks KC and Bry!):
I took a bath and we headed out for dinner around 8 to Araxi. We ended up getting a seat in the lounge and having a witty french server who blinked alot. I loved him. We had this delicious appetizer:
Dungeness Crab Roll in Egg Crepe
wrapped with cold smoked wild salmon, watercress and yuzu mayonaise in an egg crepe with avocado and tomatillo salsa verde
And Bryan ordered the sablefish as his entree. I stuck to the butternut squash soup, 7,000 rolls with butter and plenty of water. Dinner was really lovely with the snow slowly falling outside the windows. After dinner we REALLY wanted the ice cream at Cow’s but they were just closing :(.
The next day we left town after a quick breakfast at BG Urban Grille. Whistler got a ton of snow on Sunday and Bryan definitely DID NOT want to leave. But contrary to how we acted the night prior, we are adults. Who have jobs. And mortgages. And horrible hangovers.
Til next time, Canada!