Different Trains: The Vancouver Antique Trolley

We’ve recent­ly been to the Home Show at the Sta­di­um, but the event was­n’t very pho­to­genic (although the Glide­house, a mod­ern pre­fab house that is exact­ly the kind of place we would have built on our land in Ver­mont, had we gone with Plan A — that’s the plan that would have kicked in if Bush and his min­ions had been defeat­ed. Oh well.)
Speak­ing of trains (if the pre­vi­ous entry is still vis­i­ble), on Sat­ur­day around 1 PM we did some­thing that was far more quaint and pho­tograph­able. We took a trip on the last week­end of the year that the Van­cou­ver His­tor­i­cal Soci­ety runs the trol­ley line between Granville Island and Sci­ence World. It’s a short trip in an old (about 80 years or so) trol­ley car, com­plete with com­plete­ly refur­bished wood pan­el­ing, woven cane seats, and some of the orig­i­nal adver­tis­ing in those cards above the win­dows (Let’s go Square Danc­ing on the Trol­ley! — Anoth­er one involved mak­ing pies that were ‘digestible’).

The whole expe­ri­ence was just shy of a Dis­ney­land ride, and the car was full of tourists and par­ents with their chil­dren. The peo­ple who run it also get into the spir­it; one of them was clear­ly wear­ing a han­dle­bar mus­tache, clear­ly enjoy­ing the chance to play dres­sup each week­end dur­ing the sum­mer and fall. I have more pic­tures of our short trip to the 1920s on Flickr. It was a nice way to spend a sun­ny fall afternoon.

The trol­ley also had an inter­est­ing link to the future: In it were details of a pro­pos­al for a street­car that would fol­low some of the same tracks. I would absolute­ly love it, but as some­one point­ed out, the mass tran­sit bud­get (as well as the patience with all of the con­struc­tion and has­sles for it) was pret­ty much being blown by the RAV line I men­tioned in my last entry. A pity, as it would be an incred­i­bly con­ve­nient way for me to go to the east end of down­town, rather than the cur­rent way, which is a bus up Granville and then con­nect­ing with the Skytrain.

Of course, I nev­er met a mass tran­sit con­veyance I did­n’t like. Even one that is not much dif­fer­ent than the Teacup ride.