I look forward to this trip all year long, because I LOVE British Columbia - and Canadians. Whenever we go across the border, I think, "I could live here." It just feels like home. We spent one night in Victoria, four nights up-island in Tofino and our last night back in Victoria. Tofino is a five-hour drive from Victoria, which is about 3 hours from our home, and we've found that it's a good idea to break up the trip. In addition, we never get tired of exploring Victoria, so any time we spend there is a pleasure. The flowers in town were gorgeous.
East Sooke Regional Park on the first day. We like to hike the coastal trail from Aylard Farm up to Beechey Head, and back through the woods. After the hike, we headed back to the hotel to freshen up and change for dinner.
|Looking toward the Olympic Mountains across the Strait of Juan de Fuca|
|I love this image of the two iPhone photographers, back-to-back, taking panoramas|
|David, me, Gregg, Caroline, Jim, Phil & Rachel|
|Gathering before dinner on our first night up north|
|David, Phil & Rachel|
|A long beach hike on the day it didn't rain INCHES. Some of those tiny figures on top of the rock are Jim, Phil & David.|
|Hungry? It's time for a "little darlin' " (a snack, packed from the lodge)|
|A game of frisbee is always welcome|
|A little rest after lunch|
|Dinner at the Wild Side|
|More of the group at the Wild Side - the best fish and chips ANYwhere!|
Before we left home, my friend Robin gave each of us in the Sh*tty First Draft Writing Group the gift of a yarzheit candle. August and September hold the dates when three of our children passed away (the other two are in January and June), as well as some of our group's birthdays, so we are entering a tender time. The Jewish tradition is to light this candle at sundown on the night before the anniversary of a loved one's death. I packed the candle in my bag and lit it on the evening of the 15th. There are prayers and Bible verses which you can say when you light it, but it is not required.
We drank a toast to Katie before dinner on the 16th, ate my favorite food (fresh Dungeness crab) and talked a bit about her.
|I'm not a food blogger, but please! This meal was incredible. Roasted asparagus, tomato and avocado salad, Caesar salad, homemade focaccia, risotto with peas, all the crab you could eat (with drawn butter and a finger bowl) AND dessert.|
When we went to our cabin to get ready for bed that night, the candle had burned all the way down. It was somehow just the right timing.
We explored many of our favorite beaches and trails, did a lot of walking in the rain, read, played games, talked, read more, sat by the fire, slept and ate well. One day it rained three inches - IN ONE DAY, in August. I'm not griping- we knew that were next to a rain forest - but this has never happened to us before, in any of the seven years we have made this trip. It did not in any way ruin the vacation, but it was a surprise.
|Back in Victoria, in a Scottish pub which had live music and a couple of dozen beers on tap|
|A toast to a wonderful vacation|
It is still "under construction," and was launched today. Please stop by, take a look around, and leave any constructive comments you have about it here. I'm just learning how to build it, and want it to be the best it can be.