Sunday, May 7, 2006

Public Policies Seminar in Vancouver

This weekend was amazing. I flew with a group of other students to Vancouver this past Friday to participate in the "Explore Public Policy Issues" seminar organized by The Fraser Institute.

Night Around Town
Once we checked in, we went out separate ways. I was going to go with a portion of the group to the beach and then to a restaurant/pub. Just before getting into a cab, I backed out and decided to run upstairs to grab my umbrella. I wanted to explore and take photos of the area, eventually making my way to a coffee shop. As I was about to press the "up" button someone called my name. It was an old friend that I haven't seen since early September. He was there to see the Rolling Stones Concert but it got cancelled. He knew one of the students in my group and decided to visit him instead... I just happened to be there at the right time. So we went out to a sushi bar and had a few drinks. It felt so good being in a big city again; I love the openness, architecture and atmosphere. There are a few places I would like to visit again next time I go.

The Actual Seminar
The next morning my alarm went off, and I turned it off thinking I'd wake up a few minutes later like usual. Not the case. I almost slept through breakfast. After breakfast, there was a group picture and registration. Then the seminar began.

The first topic was "Gun Registration" followed the Rise of Western Canada's Economies, Immigration and Terrorism, The Future of Online Gaming, and Drugs. After each lecture there was a question answer session followed by group discussion. I learned a lot and had a great time. There are sides to those subjects that I didn't understand but through this seminar, I understand them better. I particularly enjoyed the subject of online gaming.

At the Airport
At the airport I bought this book called "The Attraction Factor" by Joe Vitale. He's in one of my favorite movies, "The Secret." It was after I bought the book, something else weird happened.

One of the guys in my travel group is in my Business Law class. We talked a lot about class after we arrived, during the ride to the hotel. Ironically enough, at the airport for the return flight I bumped into my Law Prof. That was weird.

Shortly after that we parted ways and I went through security. I have never had such an issue with metal detectors in my life. I fly regularly throughout the year around Canada and the States. Rings I never had to take off at any airport prior, small clips on my sweater (smaller than average button on a white dress shirt), my sandals and even places on me that I know for sure didn't have metal on me were setting off the detector. The lady looked puzzled and couldn't explain it so she just let me go.

About 35 minutes later, when I was telling the guy in my class about seeing our teacher, my prof showed up again just as I was about to say his name. Funky timing.

There is something awesome about flying at night... because of the altitude and the lack of atmosphere, it's much easier to watch the stars. Besides, I usually have the weirdest experiences when I fly at night.