Friday, December 1, 2017

A Good Read [#Girlboss - Sophia Amoruso]

Not the conventional business book you get on the market. The book brings you through the success of Nasty Gal - how it first started as just another ordinary e-Bay vintage store to a famous fashion brand today. The author's journey to being the founder and CEO of Nasty Gal is extremely unusual. When she wrote that she scrounged in dumpster for leftover bagels during her teens (among other things like stealing from shops, hitchhiking etc) - which the author conveniently called it as "dumpster dive", I reflected, and realised, the craziest thing I have done in my life was nowhere near that.

Success is really not about whether you have a degree or how wealthy you are. It's about believing in yourself and what you want to do. You can be broken and directionless, but don't let that mask your true ability. You can still be unique and successful if you play by your own rules. Dare to dream and make it happen.

My favourite quotes:

"Most poeple don't land their dream job right out of the gate, which means we all have to start somewhere. You will appreciate your amazing career so much more when you look back at your not-so-amazing jobs in the past, and hopefully realize that you learned something from all of them."

"No matter where you are in life, you'll save a lot of time by not worrying too much about what other people think about you. The earlier in your life that you can learn that, the easier the rest of it will be. You is who you is, so get used to it."

This hit right at me as I was reading because I took almost two years to realise this and overcome the unnecessary sensitivity I used to have with what people say and do. The most unworthy compromise in life is to lose yourself while trying to please everyone else.

Friday, October 6, 2017

Twenty Something Travel to [the Canadian's Rockies Mountain - Day 3&4]

You can read Day 1 & 2 here.

Day 3 

Banff Gondola (Sulphur Mountain)

I will definitely recommend taking a ride up!

1. Banff Gondola up to the Sulphur Mountain

Moraine Lake (my favourite lake)

2. Moraine Lake (my favourite lake)
Hike up to the viewing point (Rockpile Trail)

We spot a squirrel

Lake Louise

3. Lake Louise


Emerald Lake

4. Emerald Lake

Spending our night at Revelstoke (The Regent Hotel) *hotel not shown

Day 4

The Last Spike - Canadian Pacific Railway

1. The Last Spike - Canadian Pacific Railway

Coldstream Valley

2. Coldstream Valley

Othello Tunnels

3. Othello Tunnels

And that is the end of our 4 days 3 nights trip to the Rockies Mountain!

The subsequent travel posts on Toronto, Montreal and New York might be delayed as I'm working on something very exciting which I can't wait to share! Stay tuned for the announcement! Watch this space yo! xoxo

Friday, September 15, 2017

Twenty Something Travel to [Canadian Rockies Mountain -Day 1&2]

While doing research on Vancouver, I came across pictures of Banff National Park and was dazzled by the stunning pictures online. However, going to Banff ourselves could be quite troublesome considering the luggage we were going to bring and the accessibility. So I tried researching on the available guided tours online. Little did I know Banff was just one of the destinations in the popular Rockies Mountain tour. 

I was considering between Discover Canada Tours and West Trek Tours, and I finally settled on the former because they provided the exact dates of the tour which made our planning easier (we planned this trip 4 months in advance).

Note: There are plenty of tour operators which offer great trips to the Rockies Mountain. The reason I opted for the Rockies Classic Summer Tour (4 days) offered by Discover Canada Tours was that it had the best price point and it covered the places that I planned to visit. Oh, and not forgetting that they depart near downtown Vancouver. If you have been following all my travel posts, you will realise that I will try to make everything (food, accommodation, guided tours etc) affordable and fun. So if you are looking at staying in luxurious hotels and eating great expensive food, this tour operator is definitely out of your consideration. The price you are paying is merely for the service rendered by the tour guide, the bus driver, your accommodation (a mix of budget and above average hotels), and some simple meals. You need to make separate payments for any additional activities.

The Rockies Mountain tour with Discover Canada Tours was the best trip of my life! Our tour guides were Bob and Brad and they made the tour super fun for us. David and Myle were our bus drivers. It took about 3 hours on average to arrive at each destination, definitely not an easy drive up the mountains!

Bob, the snowman builder

Price wise, if you're a student, you get CAD 49 (approx. SGD 53) off the tour price. The basic package was CAD 459 (approx. SGD 497) per pax and we added the Gondola + Snowcoach Tour Combo which costed CAD 100 (approx. SGD 108). So that would add up to CAD 559 (approx. SGD 605) per pax, CAD 139 (approx. SGD 150) per day. I would highly recommend going for the Gondola + Snowcoach combo. And that's enough to complete your Rockies Mountain experience.

Alternatively, if you are confident with your driving and navigating skills and do not mind driving long hours, you could rent a car and do a self-guided tour up to the Rockies too. That way you have more control over your itinerary.

Since it's a 4-day tour, we didn't want to bring a month's worth of clothing along (we would be heading back to Downtown Vancouver, Toronto, Montreal and New York after this) because we knew we would be staying at a different hotel/motel every night during the tour. So we engaged the service of PorterGenie where they would pick your luggage up, store them securely and deliver them back to you. Entirely hassle-free. Check them out here.

The attractions along the Rockies Mountain scattered across different provinces in Canada and into the United States. Can you believe that it is more than 4,800km long! I will be sharing our itinerary here!

Day 1 (In chronological order)

8.00am - Depart Vancouver from Canada Place

Fraser River

1. Fraser River, the longest river in British Columbia (BC). Major salmon producer in BC.

Douglas Fir

Couldn't catch a sight of a real bear, so a picture would suffice, for now. 

You have been warned!

River Safari Bear Tour

We didn't go onto the boat because it was optional and we were told we could still see bears elsewhere.

2. River Safari Bear Tour in Blue River (optional) 

We didn't go for the tour so we stayed in.

Burger + hot chocolate (meal included)

Our motel for the night, Alpine Inn, Valemount. (Picture taken in the morning from the bus)

Day 2

Moose Lake

1. Moose Lake at Mount Robson Provincial Park (Alberta, Canada)

Primary inflows: Fraser River

Maligne Canyon

2. Maligne Canyon (Jasper, Alberta)

I wore three layers of tops (excluding the jacket) and two layers of bottoms to beat the cold. And they told me it's summer.

Tangle Creek Falls

3. Tangle Creek Falls, Icefield Parkway (Jasper, Alberta, Canada)

Columbia Icefields

4. Columbia Icefields

Athabasca Glacier behind us! (It was snowing btw)

Snocoach Tour to the Athabasca Glacier

Glacier Water

The Big Bend

5. The Big Bend on the Icefield Parkway (spot the curved highway)

We saw a grizzly bear on our way to Banff!

Bow Lake

6. Bow Lake

Pardon my hair (my photographer didn't ask me to fix it before he took the picture)

Our stay for the night at Banff 

Stay tuned for day 3 and 4!