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Saturday in Banff is pretty crazy as the tourists descend in their droves, but Sam and I woke late and picked our way through the crowd to a cute breakfast place just off the strip for a Banff-style Eggs Benny (with Hash Browns of course).

Jo Banff Avenue

Banff Avenue

We took a leisurely stroll up Banff Avenue to the Bow (River) Falls where snow covered the pebbles that transform into a picturesque river ‘beach’ in the summer time. Yet another exquisite view!

Jo Sitting on Bow River

Bow River Beach

Sam with rocks

Sammy at Bow River Falls

Then we walked up the hill, past the Banff Golf Course (you’ll need those psychedelic golf balls here), to the world famous Banff Springs Hotel (Fairmont Hotel) for a self-tour and a posh hot chocolate.

Banff Golf Course

Banff Golf Course

Jo at Fairmont

Cone of Silence (so they can’t hear you suck your breath in when you get the bill)

Ridiculous opulence, but impressive nonetheless. The view was extraordinary and it was so cool to be hanging with dear Sammy in such beautiful surroundings.Fairmont Hotel Entrance Fairmont Hotel Wide Jo and Sammy FairmontSam had to work later in the afternoon so we got her to The Keg and I headed back to the hotel for a well earned nap. My knee is very cranky but the walking around town is feeling good and it is healing fast.

I woke refreshed and went back into town and installed myself at The Keg to wave at Sam as she flew back and forth on her hostessing duties. Had a yummy French Onion Soup and Chopped Vegetable Salad at the bar. Sammy gave me a Staff pass to Wild Bill’s western bar so I headed over there solo to take in the band. Pretty much a drinking barn but, I can imagine, a great place to party with a group. The bar Staff wore themed T-shirts – one of which said ‘A woman once drove me to drink and I forgot to thank her’. You get the picture.

On Sunday I decided I HAD to have some hot chicken wings so we made a beeline for Boston Pizza. I was not disappointed. Yum and scorching! An afternoon of shopping for Sammy gear and our day was done. We met up with Sammy’s roommate Astrid for a Sushi dinner, then Sam and I hit a couple of bars to round off my Banff experience.

Wings at Boston Pizza

Hot Wings at Boston Pizza

At the Magpie and Stump (bar) I experienced the intriguing ‘Bulldog’ drink, which is a Margarita in a big jar with a bottle of Corona upturned in it that you lift every so often to let out the contents. What a concept! They also had buckets of peanuts all around that you could peel and drop the shells right on the floor. I pity the cleaners.

Bulldog at Magpie

‘Bulldog’ drink at The Magpie

Peanut Shells

Peanut Shell Carpet

Next was the Rose and Crown where we chugged too many Screwdrivers (Sam) and Heinekens (Jo) and a random stranger bought us a ‘Burt Reynolds’ shooter each for no reason. I love this town! We stumbled back to the Red Carpet Inn and crashed happy. Our first Mother and Daughter night on the town complete.

The next day was departure day for me. Boo hoo! Sammy and I got a rush of blood to the head and hiked 3kms to the Banff Hot Springs for a swim. The walk was awesome and the water was 40 degrees Celsius – heavenly! We felt a million bucks afterwards and SUPER hungry. It had to be hot wings again so it was back to Boston Pizza to feed Mum’s renewed addiction.

Tom picked us up at the hotel and we traveled the long stretch back to Calgary for a last supper at the Red Lobster and a sad farewell at the airport. But not for so long this time…..Tom and Sam