Friday, August 15, 2014

Vancouver - Gastown

Hullo again! We are off to Gastown today! It was the first downtown core for the city of Vancouver. Why is it named Gastown? Well... you can think up some theories... and I'll share that at the end.

Anyhow... there is a bit of an English flavour here. This signs are all over London too! I suppose a lot of the tourists from the cruise ships need reminders to look before crossing roads?

This is the western end of Gastown - the streets are cobble stones and car tires make a nice noise when they go over them. In the distance there, under the tree, is a miniature replica of a street car. Vancouver used to have street cars but they got rid of them at some point... beary short-sighted if you ask me! Just look at San Francisco and how popular they are now!

Gastown has these cool lamp standards. I always thought they were powered by gas in the olden days (hence the name Gastown) but no.... that's not it...

 There are tonnes of tourist shops here with suitable tourist prices. Lots of little bears for sale or adoption...

A Mountie bear!!! Ooooohhhh... I wish I could find a mountie suit in my size but this one was way too small... although it might fit Little Fox or Beanie or Hammie.

And this one is way tooooo big... sigh...

Hello... what's this??? It is the Gastown steam clock! You can just see a bit of steam wafting out the top of it.

Here's a better view of it. Apparently there is an underground steam-heating system throughout downtown Vancouver and this steam clock is powered by the steam. It was the first steam clock ever!! The little chimes go every 4.5 minutes and the big whistle goes on the hour... cool...

Ah-hah... Do you see it??? Off to the right...

Heh-heh... time for a hot chocolate!!!

Sigh.. that was nice.. now back to the roads. It is early morning so beary quiet out there...

Here we are at the eastern end of Gastown. This is the super skinny building at Water St and Carrall. East of here, the neighbourhood gets a bit sketchy. Actually, back in the 60s, Gastown itself was a bit sketchy but there was a big improvement project and now all the old warehouses are chique loft apartments and trendy tourist shops.

Oh hey!!! A big pink, double-decker bus!! It does sight-seeing tours of Vancouver... Now... why is Gastown called Gastown?? Because there was a lad from Yorkshire who was a seaman and steamboat captain who opened up a bar down here. He was called Jack Deighton but he was a very talkative guy and so people called him Gassy Jack. Uh-huh... it's true! Although... maybe he had other... ummm... habits that would result in him being called gassy???


  1. Replies
    1. Oh good!! I think so too!!! It's just too perfect a name "Gassy Jack"... Bob T. Bear would love that!

  2. I haven't been to Gastown, but my roommate has been there. I didnt know Vancouver had any sketchy beary careful. By the way did you make it to Stanley Park?

    1. Nope, no Stanley Park on this visit... We did whip through it on the bus though. Mama said the bus didn't stop there because we were on the Express. Phooie!

  3. I saw a similar bear to the big one in the mounty uniform in Jasper. I bet they are cousins.

    1. I think so too... there is another one the Calgary Airport and I think the Ice Fields centre had a big moose in a mountie uniform. I wish they would make these things in little bear sizes!