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Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Ottawa Rafting Trip

A 3 day getaway for the Labour Day weekend really isn't enough, i still have that itching need to go somewhere. Is there a way to get rich quick and retire quick? That way i can spend my life travelling, eating and going to the gym.

Anyways, our trip was great. It was just, Daniel, Jacky, Mandy and me. Thank you Daniel for being such a good sport and being the driver. He is so good at not falling asleep behind the wheel and being very energetic throughout the ride. Mandy went to school in Ottawa for some years so she knows the place around by heart. Awesome guide for us three.

Day 1:

Daniel picked us up from our homes early in the morning with snacks and goodies already stuffed in the back seat for us to pig out on. Without nearly no pit stops, we were halfway to Ottawa and we decided to check out some vineyards and winery. The first one we went to was called Closson Chase Vineyard at the Grange of Prince Edward "Prince Edward County". We did wine tasting there, trying three different types of wines. Mandy is such a wine addict, she is so good at making sense of wine and identifying the taste! She prefer's "wine enthusiast" rather than addict lol!

Next one we went to is called Lacey Estates vineyards & winery. We also did wine tasting there, trying three different types of wines again. I didn't quite like these ones, i found they were a bit too heavy on taste...(does that make sense?)...maybe it's because i'm not a huge fan of red wine.

Last stop we went to was the Prince Edward County Lavender. It's a big big field of where they grow Lavender, it smelled so wonderful, and the owners had a store and they sold many many things which are made with/and or from Lavender. In the end, we tried Lavender biscuits, not the best cookie I've ever tried, but it sure made it smell delicate.

We had lunch at East and Main Bistro at Wellington, Ontario. It's a very nice place with lovely food. The highlight dish of our lunch was the poutine with rabbit meat. I never thought i'd eat rabbit meat, but there. I tried it for the first time.

After lunch we drove all the way to Ottawa. We checked into Sheraton's Four Points hotel which was located on the Quebec side. After we settled in, Mandy took the initiative to drive since she's more familiar with the place....we crossed the bridge and walked around downtown Ottawa. We reached a nice and cozy Gelato place which Mandy recommended to us call Piccolo Grande, and had some gelato. It was yums. We then walked around for hours looking for a nice restaurant to eat dinner in, and we asked about 4-5 really nice ones but they were all full. Mind you it was a Saturday night and it's a tourist place. So we opted for a nice Viet place which Mandy also recommended, a 10 minute drive away. I had good pho. Ottawa's yummie pho...really helped warmed me up, it was so cold!

We knew we had to get up extremely early the next day but we still ended up staying up really late at night playing UNO cards and drinking wine that Daniel bought at a nearby convenience store.

Day 2:

This morning we woke up at 4am to get ready to go rafting. The sky was still dark and we were dead tired. It's an hour and a half drive to OWL rafting, that's why we had to wake up so early. I have been car sick so much lately on this trip that i can barley sit on a moving vehicle for more than 5 minutes. I blame myself for going on vacation when i didn't recover from my cold before. When we got to OWL rafting, we were still early. It was freezing there, and it was also a terrible day to go rafting. It was only a high of 17 degrees with no sun and it was so cold that i could see my own breath. We sat at the fireplace and waited for people to start showing up, when they did, they started serving breakfast, and we had out breakfast there. Afterwards was the rafting presentation and then we had to go sign our waivers and get changed. A bus drove our group up 15 minutes toward the Ottawa stream and that's when we got into our rafts. We had a 12 people raft and i sat in the back because i couldn't swim, and apparently it's safer at the back.

It was a fun day though, despite the freezing temperature. Surprisingly, the water was warm, just that the air is cold. I wasn't stupid enough to jump off the ship like last time, but everyone else did. Then again, they could all swim. I'm so glad that our raft didn't flip over when riding the rapids like many others did, i'd be so scared and i'll panic. But i held on tightly for dear life while watching the people in front of me fall off. The rapids looked mega scary but it was fuuuunnnnn.

Rafting was from 8-3, and around midway, we stopped at a spot where people can go cliff diving, and drink some sugar juice. It looked sooo fun and i'd totally do it, if i know how to swim. Unfortunately i don't but for sure the next time i go rafting again, i will defiantly be well taught! This trip was a lot like Wilderness Tours, but it seems a little bit more on the safer side. A little less "HOLY COW", it was more like "WOW". Our instructor was so tall! He's 6'7 but he's very knowledgeable. Unfortunately he didn't talk a lot or wasn't very funny like the other ones we see, making our video and pictures less exciting, but that's okay, we got a great history lesson from him.

In the end, all the rafts met up with one of the speed boats, where they then tied all the rafts together and attached it to the speedboat where we can just ride back to shore instead of paddling. That was relaxing, we were so tired already. We stopped in the middle of nowhere and hopped on a big ferry where we had lunch and it took us back to the resort. Lunch was decent i have to say. Big chicken legs and salad, hot drinks, soup. Not bad at all. The only thing was there were no tables, only rows of chairs and it was still FREEZING! I couldn't stop shivering, and my clothes weren't drying.

We got back at around 3ish and watched the videos the photographers and filmmakers took of us. It was funny but we didn't purchase it. We spent most of the remainder of the day there, sitting at the camp fire, keeping warm and playing with boardgames and walking around outside where there is a beach, volleyball, sauna, showers. Seems a lot more smaller than Wilderness tours, but still nice. Daniel went kayaking after he got back and Jacky and i was sitting outside in front of the beach enjoying a hot cup of tea, while Mandy was sitting inside where the camp fore was wrapped up in her blanket, listening to her iPod and enjoying a book, like many others were. It was a relaxing day afterwards.

We got back to the hotel and showered and everything before going back to downtown Ottawa for dinner. We made reservations at a nice restaurant the night before because we learned our lesson. We ate dinner at Vittoria Trattoria, it's a very nice fancy restaurant with two floors. Our food was a little salty but it was nice. We had a creme brulee for desert but i didn't get to try it since in the middle of dinner, i started feeling sick again. After dinner, Daniel and Mandy dropped us off at the hotel while those two went out to try to find some ginger ale to make me feel better. They are SOOO sweet! <3>

We played UNO cards again but Mandy and I were tired and fell asleep first. The boys were chatting until 2am in the morning and i remember in the middle of the night i had a dream and i accidentally kicked Mandy really hard when i jolted awake. Oooops Sorryyy! But i think she didn't know what was going on because she fell back asleep right away =) *phew!*

Day 3:

Today's our last day :( We checked out of our hotel at around 10am, and went to Denny's for breakfast while Mandy met up with her Ottawa friends. After Brunch, we drove to Parliament Hill while we walked around and took pictures an went to the Parliament building. After that short tourist moment, it was time to go home and met back up with Mandy. We only made one stop and Daniel was driving really fast on the highway. We got home at around 6ish, just in time to have dinner with the family.

It was a really fun trip, just a tad short and a tad cold. I really wanted to go to The Hot Air Balloon festival, but we didn't have enough time, i was really looking forward to that, it was even planned too! We also planned to go to the sound and light show at the parliament building, but dinner ran a little late that night so we missed it. Our hotel was right beside the museum of civilization but we didn't manage to go wither. Defiantly not enough time in one day, but i defiantly want to go back again.



  2. lol yes i did go to the doc's today. i shall be heavily medicated and need to massage/exercise my hand with a tennis ball. i got mum to get the tennis balls.. but then i saw a pretty sparkly one with water inside! and got that too.. and two smiley squishy ones. yeah. it better heal!!

    sounds like a fun trip you had. i want that rabbit poutine. didn't ur mum make rabbit soup before??

    hot air balloon festival would've been sooo fun. like that movie with the knocked up girl in it (i don't remember what the movie was called.. but she was a reporter....?) and that scene with the ballons was amazinggggg. that would be such a nice date! that and a private jet zooming around the city. yeah=))))))))


    ps. so classy!! i'd have love to have gone wine tasting too, yum.

  3. how come you have to excercise your hand if your eyes are twitching? or is it your hands?

    i know! i'm so mad we didn't get to go! it would have been like the kite festival, instead all sorts of awesome shaped balloons in the air!

    yeah haha i thought of you when we went wine tasting, it's such a cindy thing to do!