I’m back in Edmonton. I was in Winnipeg for a week and a half, and I’d have to say this was my best visit yet. I had so much fun.
This past Xmas I visited but I took the train, so while I was there I was relying on others to get a ride whenever we wanted to do something. Because of this there were several nights where plans fell through, and in a few cases didn’t get to see certain friends at all as a result of neither of us having a ride. So driving there this time made a huge difference, as now I could do anything whenever I wanted. How I used to live without a car, I’ll never know.
The other major factor is that because I went in Spring and not during Xmas Holidays, it wasn’t so busy. My past 2 trips have been during Xmas so all plans with friends had to be scheduled around what I was doing with my family, and what my friends were doing with their family. Also, this was my first time back in Winnipeg where it wasn’t freezing out since I last lived there for a summer, in 2008. Warm weather and longer days make a big difference! Driving down Bishop Grandin while it was +18 out, tunes cranked and window down, reminded me of all the great summers I had when I lived there.
I spent most of my time with Chad and Kristina on this trip. They’re the 2 friends I’ve kept in contact with most, so it was great to hang out with them in person. I also made time for my family. Had Chinese food on Easter with my Mom, brother and uncle, and spent a night at my Dad’s after our traditional Spaghetti Factory dinner. Stayed up until 5:00 AM with my Dad having a great conversation.
Also reconnected with Brett and Tim on this trip. Met up with them at Brett’s Mom’s for a bonfire and spent the night catching up. Was good to see them again. I think it was understood between all of us that we’d never be super close friends again, like we used to be. But we’re all in better places now, so I think it goes to show our friendship had been toxic for us all, and some time apart had been good for everyone. And with all our history, it’s good that we’re still in each other's lives in some form.
A few highlights from the trip:
- Perfectly surprising Kristina, and then Chad, neither of whom had any idea I was in Winnipeg (I don’t care what Kristina says, she didn’t know!)
- Eating at Sal’s with Chad (since we met when we both worked at a Sal’s) my first night back, him in disbelief I was in Winnipeg.
- Drinks at Moxies with Kristina, Chad and Olga and having Liane and Tony, and then Craig all drop by!
- Lunch at Mongo’s with Ashley, her treat!
- Watching TV at Chad’s and using his laptop while he did his paid 3D art projects, imagining it won’t be much different when he moves to Edmonton.
- Getting to see Simba again!
- Staying up until 5:00 AM with Chad playing God Of War 3. Thanks to Kyra for letting me rent it for free, and to Derek for lending me his PS3 for the night!
- Seeing Hot Tub Time Machine with Kristina, Chad, Olga, Liane and Tony.
- Late night coffees with Kristina.
- Spending a day at St. Vital mall with Chad and Olga, meeting up with Kristina while Olga got her hair done, etc. St. Vital mall always represented Winnipeg for some reason.
- Chad buying Dragon Age Awakening and me signing his copy.
- St. Vital park with Chad, seeing how high the river was.
- Forks, Spaghetti Factory with my bro, his gf, my Dad and Andrea. Then late night conversation at my Dad’s that night.
- Friends and family seeing the Sunfire and being impressed.
- Pellet gun fights with Chad.
- My first time at a Joey’s, and the AWESOME Souvlaki Kristina and I ordered.
- Many girly drinks over the week and a half I was there.
- A nice warm afternoon on Corydon with Kristina.
- Winning Kristina a stuffed animal from a claw machine. Named it Sunflower after our shared love of sunflower seeds.
- Going to the Casino with Chad and Kristina, only to have Kristina realize she forgot her ID. We ended up going on my last day, with Olga too, and this time Kristina had her ID.
- Goodbye hugs and handshakes.
Good times. I miss Winnipeg already, though I’m also glad to be back in
Edmonton. If only there was some way to combine my 2 lives!