What to do on the weekend – Canada Day Edition

This week is short, which means it’s already weekend, and it’s a special one! Tomorrow is Canada Day, the national holiday which celebrates the anniversary of Canadian Confederation from July 1st, 1867 where the three separate colonies of the United Canadas, Nova Scotia, and New Brunswick were united into a single Dominion within the British Empire called Canada.

There are a few options to celebrate Canada Day:

You could come celebrate with INTERNeX at Wreck Beach. The weather will be sunny and there’s a big party going on. Everyone is welcome to join. Just make sure you bring enough food and drinks with you since the beach is not too easy to access with it’s 490 steps. The walk is worth it though, from here you can see the most beautiful sunset in Vancouver. The vibes are immaculate. It’s definitely something you have to see for yourself, but be aware: at this beach clothing is optional, so it’s nothing for sensitive eyes. 😉


Another option would be Canada place. Each year there’s a bunch of food trucks, live music, and entertainment. Performers include Johnny Reid, The Boom Booms, Omega Mighty, and many more.The event at Canada Place is the second largest Canada Day celebration, next only to those in Ottawa, Canada’s capital. To be honest though, it seemed very small to me when I went. If you look for a parade, jazz concerts, street performers, and craft activities, Granville Island is the place for you. It’s a little more family oriented than other locations, but still a fun place to visit, even on regular days.

I think in general you just need to go outside and you’ll find a celebration somewhere! Your dress code should be red and/or white, the same colours as the Canadian flag, for the full experience. 😉


There’s also another side to Canada Day that I want to talk about. It attracted a negative stigma among some Indigenous peoples in Canada and their allies, who feel that it is a celebration of the colonization of Indigenous land. That’s because prior to European colonization, present-day Canada was inhabited by Indigenous peoples, with distinct trade networks, spiritual beliefs, and styles of social organization. You’ve probably noticed signs in and around Vancouver that refer to the Indigenous peoples and their language. This topic is very complex and takes some time to explain, but I think it’s important to spread awareness and talk about different sides of this country. If you are interested there’s lots of things to learn!

Here are, for example, some links for you to check out about Indigenous languages in BC:
https://maps.fpcc.ca/languages
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7WugI6-XUzA

I think it’s good to acknowledge the different feelings Canada Day sparks amongst the population. For many, it isn’t about history though, it’s a day to celebrate people, diversity, and inclusion in a beautiful country, and that’s what I like to celebrate!

Whatever you decide on, I’m sure you’ll have a great weekend, and an even better Canada Day! 🙂

As for a few others of us, we’ll go to Las Vegas on Sunday for even more celebrations! But that’s a different story. I’ll tell you about it once we’re back. 🙂

Can’t wait to hear about your weekend!

Cheers,

Laura 🙂

New ‘Kid’ on the Blog

Here comes another INTERNeX candidate! Please welcome Tim to our crew. He’s from Lingen in the North of Germany and he’ll be staying with us for the next two months. His practicum is in Marketing, so he’ll be helping organize events, etc. The first one will be a big charity golf tournament. In Germany he still attends high school. One more year is left until he finishes his diploma (Abitur), so he can go to university to study Marketing or Engineering. He tells me that one reason why he chose Marketing is the variety of tasks this area has to offer. You work with lots of interesting people, do something different every day, until you specify on something that you like most, so it doesn’t get boring.


His first impression of Vancouver is “big”. Since he’s from a small town in Germany he’s not used to the scale of this city with it’s skyscrapers. I remember that I felt the same way when I got here three years ago, and now I think it’s a small city. Funny how things change with time. I’m sure many of you feel very similar. Tim also didn’t expect to see snow on the mountains, but oh boy, he didn’t know that we had pretty modest weather until last weekend. Summer let us wait for a while, plus those mountains are pretty darn big, so you’ll be able to see snow on some of them all summer long. Part of the reasons why he chose Canada are the nature and the fact that it’s very different from his hometown.

In his free time he likes to go sailing, or to play Tennis. Anyone down for a match?

Meet him at our pub night tonight, 7pm at The Beaver! See you there!

Cheers,

Laura 🙂

How was the weekend?

Hot, Adventurous, Fun. Those words describe my weekend best.

As you know, the sun was shining the entire weekend. For some it might’ve been too hot, but I loved the sunny weather. One reason I liked it so much might be that I spent my days near the water, so I could cool down easily.

On Saturday some friends (including their big puppy) and I went to Cultus Lake in Chilliwack. We brought some snacks, a big blanket, lots of water, air hammocks and a floatie with us, everything you need for a perfect day at the lake. I recommend going early, since it gets really busy on hot summer days and it can be difficult to find a good spot. I really enjoyed just relaxing in the sun, float on the lake and refresh in the cold water. There was also the Cultus Lake Festival going on, with lots of little booths and food trucks. If you ever get the chance try some cinnamon rolls from SinAmen Bun & Co., they are delicious!


After my rest day I felt ready for our Bubble Ball match with INTERNeX! We met at Charleson Park and started our adventure. Raul, the coach, explained the basics to us, for example to never bump someone from the back, and how to get in and out of the bubble, before we started our first game: “Bubble Soccer”. My team won both rounds (wohoo), but we weren’t ready for the next game. It’s called “Protect the General”. Each team had to choose one general and the goal for the other team was to knock them down, or push them outside the lines of the field. We lost every single round and got bumped to the ground pretty hard. Nevertheless it was super fun! We had some free time to try out a few stunts in the Bubbles, like front flips, or back flips, before we finished with our last two games: “English Bulldog”, and “Musical Bubbles”. There was a lot of running and bumping involved, so it got pretty hot in the sun, even hotter in the bubbles!


To cool down, some of us went to Kitsilano Beach, where we met more people from INTERNeX. Apparently not everyone was tired from Bubble Ball yet, so they played a round of Volleyball. It was super busy at the beach, but we still found a nice spot to relax and enjoy the sunset with good music and a couple of beers. 😉 It was the perfect way to end the weekend, it just felt too short. But good news, this week will be a short one! Friday is Canada Day! Are you ready to celebrate?

I hope your weekend was great and you enjoyed the first days of summer in Vancouver.

See you at Pub night on Wednesday!

Cheers,

Laura 🙂

What to do on the weekend – Sunny Edition

We’ve all been waiting for it and finally it’s here: Summer. At least this weekend the weather is expected to be spectacular in Vancouver! Here are some ideas on how to enjoy the sunny days.

I) BC Bubble Ball with INTERNeX Join us for Bubble Ball this Sunday, 1pm at Charleston Park! We are going to play a bunch of fun games encased in transparent big bubbles. It’s recommended to everyone who is comfortable playing sports, falling over and laughing until their abs hurt. 🙂

II) The VIMFF in North Vancouver Also on Sunday, from 3pm-9pm there’ll be the Vancouver International Mountain Film Festival, celebrating Canadian Multiculturalism with a free outdoor event at the Shipyards, right at the Londsdale Quay in North Vancouver. We’ll head over there after our Bubble Ball match, so if you’d like please join us! There’ll be award-winning mountain films, live music, giveaways, fun activities, like an outdoor climbing wall, a beer garden, snacks and more! A perfect way to end a sunny weekend.

III) Beach day Of course the sun screams for a beach day! Vancouver has a lot of them! Take a buddy and tan, play volleyball, or go swim in the ocean. For a more relaxed beach atmosphere with a little more space I recommend to go to Spanish Banks. The beach is wider and the water clearer than at the other beaches, plus you have a great view of the mountains and the city skyline. If you want to stay close to bars, restaurants and other shops I recommend Kitsilano beach. It’s such a hip area! A lot of younger people go here to play some beach games and enjoy the sun. At night you can sometimes find street artists playing their music and people just start dancing to it. To me, that really feels like summer.


IV) Lake day If you’re not into salty water, there’s also a few lakes around. You’d have to go a little further, but you could make a whole day event out of your trip. My recommendation is Cultus Lake in Chilliwack! Nearby there’s also the Cultus Lake Water Park, Castle Fun Park in Abbotsford and more. It’s a nice little getaway from the city and popular amongst many locals. A good way to explore the Canadian country side a little more. If you’re hungry on your way back stop by at Brodeur’s Bistro in Abbotsford for the best Chicken Waffles you’ll ever have (trust me on this one). The only downside: you’d probably need a car, since the public transit is not too good outside of the city.

V) Get some ice cream! Vancouver has a bunch of (n)ice cream shops. Here are my top 3 must-tries this summer:
1.) While you are in Kits, get some Rain or Shine ice cream before, or after you go to the beach and thank me later. 😉 They have some really good vegan options as well and all cones are made in house! You can smell it when you get close to the shop.
2.) Earnest Ice Cream is one of Vancouver’s favourites when it comes to the frozen dessert. They have rotating flavours that make you return all summer (and winter) long.
3.) If you are looking for a place with many many different flavours, you should check out La Casa de Gelato, with it’s 238 varieties of ice cream! This place actually won a world record.


Which ice cream are you going to try first? Are you Team Beach or Team Lake? Are you excited for summer, or are you more of a winter person?

I’m definitely excited!

Have a great weekend!

Cheers,

Laura 🙂

New ‘Kids’ on the Blog

Last week we’ve got a lot of Newbies joining our INTERNeX crew. 20 students from Bristol in the UK just arrived! Half of them study sports & fitness and the other half study travel & tourism. They are here on a four week volunteer practicum program in different, super interesting companies and organizations. Each of them will gain valuable work experience abroad while enjoying the few coming weeks of summer (hopefully). They are eager to get as much as possible out of their time here.

Friday, we went on a little hike in Pacific Spirit Regional Park, all the way down to Spanish Banks, to explore the area around UBC, because that’s where all of them are staying. Afterwards, most of the crew went Downtown to do some shopping. On Sunday almost all of them joined us to do the Grouse Grind! It was an extreme hike, but not extreme enough. I’ve heard from Luke that he wants to go either bungee jumping or skydiving while he’s here! Does anyone want to join?


The Brits were not the only newcomers! Jonas from Bayreuth in Germany joined us as well! He’ll be staying for at least 2.5 months doing a volunteer practicum, gaining experience in social media, organizing events, etc. He’s about to start his studies in Philosophy and Economics in Germany this fall. He told me that these majors open a wide range of possible careers for him. One of them could be Politics. His practicum combines fields of ethics and politics which is why he’s super excited to start and see how he likes it. I have the feeling he’s going to enjoy it.

Another reason why Jonas wanted to come to Vancouver is because he’s never been outside of Europe and he was seeking an adventure outside of his comfort zone. Plus, he heard about Vancouvers good weather ;), the vast nature, and the friendly people. In his free time he likes to do calisthenics, exercises that don’t rely on anything but a person’s own body weight, to play his guitar, and to meet up with friends. Maybe he can play us a song at pub night tonight? 😉

I’ll see you all there! 7pm at Sailor Hagar’s in North Vancouver!

Cheers,

Laura 🙂