Use the “Prev” and “Next” links to click forward or backward through the images in this gallery.[portfolio_slideshow]The Western Canada chapter’s first Vancouver social convened on Sunday, Feb. 23, at the scenic Fairmont Airport Hotel Lounge. The weather was not cooperative as a winter storm settled in on the Greater Vancouver area, stranding many and making it difficult for others to come. But the warmth of the Fairmont and intriguing conversations created a great get-together. (jokingly) We believe many were up very early at 4 a.m. watching the Olympic Gold medal hockey game, which impeded their ability to attend.
The group was small, but diverse with members converging on Vancouver from the local area, flying in from Calgary and even driving up from the great State of Washington, where we welcomed Joe Howell to join our group. Conversations were great as we discussed Tom‘s zest to see more, Leo and Edna‘s recent trip through Central America, Stew‘s encyclopedia of destinations traveled to (over 270 countries), and we all tried to become Joe‘s new best friend to get a room at his Molokai rental property. Joe, I’m hoping I’m in the lead.
No specific agenda was set, nor did we discuss past ideas. However, the 60th anniversary cruise was mentioned to all members with a follow-up sent this week. We took a different spin on our meeting by bringing in a guest speaker to join us.
Michael Middelaer, Director of Station Operations for Air Canada, provided us with an oversight into day-to-day airline operations. He also cited the competitive nature of the industry and the many facets that make this a difficult industry to thrive in. Following our get-together at the Fairmont, Michael arranged security clearance and a special tour of the Air Canada Hangar for all members of the group. Some needed to make a difficult decision to leave ahead of the snowfall, but the rest of us were treated to something special that most travelers never get the opportunity to see. The highlight of this tour came as we were able to look at the “engine shop” where engines are worked on and staged.
Future meetings were not discussed, but based on the response of members, the dates for 2014 are as follows:
- Winnipeg – Canceled due to insufficient interest
- Calgary – Saturday, July 5
- Vancouver – Sunday, Sept. 14
- Calgary – Sunday, Dec. 7
—Timothy Skeet, Area Coordinator