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Day 1-8

We’ve settled into Whistler after an eventful week.
We left Kew on 2 February and caught the Qantas flight 25 to Los Angeles via Auckland. We stayed two nights in Los Angeles for Greta to recover from the plane trip. Our hotel in LA was the Los Angeles Airport Marriott but after we checked in we were told that the pool was under repair. A quick complaint later we were transferred to the Renaissance – another hotel in the Marriott chain two blocks down the road. After the girls had a refreshing swim we caught a taxi to the Marina Del Rey district – about fifteen minutes and a $15 taxi ride away we ate at a seafood and sushi restaurant called Ballona. Next day, everyone woke up at 11am – a solid twelve hours sleep. We rented a car at Budget located across from the hotel and drove to the Santa Monica district. The weather was overcast, windy and cold, so not much fun walking around. We had lunch at the Border Grill – not as good as TexMex in Dallas! After lunch we stumbled across a magic shop called Magicopolis. We bought a set of the classic cups and balls and Dan Harlan’s charming Card-toon #1 tricks. We drove up to the Hollywood/Beverley Hills area and had a stroll down Rodeo Drive. A spin around Hollywood hills and back to Ballona for dinner. Lots of LA traffic!
An early start on day 3 to catch our Alaskan airline flight to Vancouver. After taking two hours to check in our flight took off and arrived on time. Greg, the driver from Whistler Taxi was waiting and our drive to Whistler took just over two hours.
The Westin Resort at Whistler is right next door to the main gondola lift which is why we picked it. First impressions are very very favourable. Really friendly people, nice room and great service. We had a quick snack at the hotel’s Firerock Lounge and later dinner at the Aubergine Grill on the first day. The sous-chef “Merv” came out to say “Hi” at the end of the meal and he explained that they source most of their produce from around the district. Kim had a “white salmon”, Greta had “wild” salmon and all were washed down with a bottle of ’97 Frescobaldi Montesodi.
Sunday morning started with Greta discovering that she had a little bit of Hives. We started the day by getting our lift passes and a pair of skis for Mia. Kerstin would be bringing her skis that we left in Obergurgl later in the week. We spent the rest of the day skiing on the runs off Emerald chairlift. We found the supermarkets (there are two), the liquor store (there are two) and the phone dealer to get our Rogers prepaid sim card for our phones.
We got a tip that Sachi Sushi had great food – so we gave it a try and it was excellent. We sat at the sushi bar and told the chef to do his Omakase.
Greta woke us at 2am covered in Hives and feeling nauseaus. As she was feeling so bad I took her to the emergency medical centre. A weird arrangement, there’s a waiting room that has a phone – you ring a number and an answering service asks a few questions before putting you through to the doctor that’s on-call. I spoke to Dr Stanley and after a few questions said that he would be there in ten minutes. Two hours later, after a shot of adrenaline, an IV of steroids and benadryl we went home all fixed. We went back at 11am to see Dr Wallman for a check to see how the Hives were going and removed the IV plug from Greta’s hand. Greta’s Hives came back a bit that night but after chatting with Dr Wallman in the morning we decided to stay with the Benadryl and Zantec rather than steriods.
Kerstin arrived on Wednesday afternoon. We ate at the Elements Urban Tapas Parlour at the Summit Lodge. Interesting take on tapas – doesn’t really work…