Summer and Fall 2012

This isn’t my photo of Vancouver, but it does show off our new home if you know where to look.

It has been six-months since posting the last update. The only travel we have done has been regional with visits to Whistler, Victoria, Seattle, Portland and Las Vegas. Our biggest life change since the last update has been the purchase of what will be our new home. It is in a neighborhood we love and it overlooks the water at the same location where we have stopped on many walks over our years together to relax and enjoy the view. While we love the location we weren’t fond of the apartment itself, so we gutted it and have been in the long (often frustrating) process of renovating it. As our first major renovation, it has been quite a learning experience but the end is finally in sight and we should be living there before the end of the year.

Leanne’s photo of Michael Paddle Boarding on False Creek

Vancouver had a long, sunny summer and it was great to be around to enjoy it. We had some great entertainment come through town and enjoyed seeing artists including The Black Keys, Jack White, Florence & the Machine, Beirut, Franz Ferdinand, Metric, Fiona Apple, Metallica, Janes Addiction, Keane, Garbage, The Shins, and Jerry Seinfeld. We most recently went for a day of TED talks at TEDx Vancouver. Many thanks to Heather for getting us into this invitation only event. We also tried paddle boarding for the first time on False Creek and I spent a long day sturgeon fishing on the Fraser River with my brother. We eat out often with friends and have discovered some new favorites in Vancouver that I highly recommend including: Wildebeest, Fable, La Pentola della Quercia, Minami, Fat Dragon BBQ, Grub, La Parisienne and The Union. We also indulged at the good but pricey Hawksworth and Le Crocodile. I feel very fortunate to live in a city that has so many great restaurants.

The best car I’ve ever driven. The Ferrari 458 Italia.

In Whistler we celebrated our fifth wedding anniversary and visited with old friends. We dined at Alta Bistro and indulged in massages and enjoyed the pool at the Four Seasons where we stayed. In Seattle we stayed downtown and our highlights included seeing Regina Spektor at the Paramount, eating at Tavolata in BellTown and wandering around Pike Place. In Victoria I had an excellent dinner with a good friend at Ulla and brilliant drinks at the Venetto Tapas Lounge. Las Vegas was the biggest rush for me though. I’ve been there numerous times and always get something new out of it. Hanging-out with a well connected acquaintance who also happens to be a really great guy always makes for an exceptional visit. Spending time with cool locals and having VIP access to hot spots like Marquee at Aria, Hyde at Bellagio, 1-Oak, and others on their busy nights leads to a lot of sleep depravation and a lot of fun. The best part of the trip though was going to a closed road track and pushing some of the world’s best supercars to their limits. I drove a Porsche Carrera, Aston Martin Vantage S, Audi R8 V10, and a new Ferrari 458 Italia (a $300K rocket of a car). The track features a number of bends, s-curves, a straightaway and a hairpin. When doing laps around it you are able to push the cars hard and you have a professional driver in the passenger seat guiding you how to drive the cars better and faster. 21 laps later, I left on a massive adrenaline high.

We have a big and exciting trip tentatively planned at the end of winter, but we still need a few things to come-together to make it happen. One way or another we will be venturing off somewhere new in 2013.