Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Thunder Bay - the reason why winter is my fat season

I've been in Thunder Bay for a little more than a day now. Here is what you need to know so far:

The domestic Air Canada terminal in the Toronto Airport. I seem to have spent a lot of time here over the years, including one memorable half-day with Lorris. The smell of Lush in this terminal is overwhelming.

The Hoito - apparently an institution in Thunder Bay. This city is filled with Finns and they like to hang out here. Going here for breakfast today reminded me of being in Europe - not much English spoken inside this place.

When you eat at the Hoito you get Finnish pancakes, either alone, with eggs, or with eggs and sausage. I opted for eggs. The sheer size of this breakfast is hard to convey and is a perfect example of why skiing makes me fat.

The outside of the restaurant. There was a bouncer, seriously! Upon entering you descend into a different world that reminds me of what Ikea must have been like in the '60s.

Our waxing cabin at Lappe. Very comfortable, except that the furnace constantly stops. Overall, a great place to work.

Getting set up this morning.

Now we have lunch. Yes, that would be round two of pancakes on the day, this time served up at the Lappe cafeteria. Some argue that these are even better than the Hoito. We did not go hungry.

Things getting serious.

Our hotel: The Prince Arthur. The 2.5/5 average customer rating on Google seems about right. This place was built in 1911 as a CNR hotel and to be honest I don't think much has changed. Hands down the darkest hotel room I've ever occupied.

Anyway, you're probably wondering how it can be just 10PM and yet we're already home. It turns out that the venue is 35 minutes from town, which is pretty inconvenient in terms of team meetings and supper. We decided that everything was in a good place for morning and headed home a little while ago. Boom.

As for wax today let me just say this - multiple layers of cold wax is what makes skis fast when the weather is cold. That and certain powders, which we applied.

Results will be on tomorrow. Lately the results have been posted live, and with many laps tomorrow there will be lots of action to follow.

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