In 1967 my father bought a Pontiac Catalina and a dingy old travel trailer and took his girlfriend, my brother and me on a road trip. Over the next 8 weeks we drove 13,498 miles, visited 51 parks, and saw wonders like geysers, redwoods, grizzlies, and the Summer of Love in San Francisco. The trip made an indelible impression, cementing my appreciation for the natural world and the American landscape. This summer Pamela and I hope to repeat the experience for our family.

Sunday, July 25, 2010

Pamela: Laundry Day

I’m sitting in a grungy laundromat in Port Angeles listening to 50s rock & roll while my three tubs of laundry chug away. Dave is off at Jiffy Lube getting the oil changed and Lark and Linden are back at the Port Angeles Inn asleep. Yes, we still have mundane chores to do while on vacation.

Yesterday we had a lovely day in Victoria, British Columbia. We took the 8 o’clock ferry over, playing cards and waiting for the fog to lift so we might spot orcas. The fog lifted as if by magic just as we approached the harbor. No whales though.

Once through immigration we hopped on a creaky double-decker bus and took off for Butchart Gardens. On the way we talked with two other families who were making similar trips to ours. One family from Florida left on June 5th and won’t be home until just before school starts—and they were camping the whole time! The kids (both girls our girl’s ages) had a glazed look about them. In contrast Lark and Linden are the life of the party—even if it was only 9:30 a.m.

Our bus driver gave us a very Canadian tour telling us all about Canada’s health care (they are all very happy with it), telling very mild, polite jokes, and saying a-boot often.

The gardens were spectacular with gorgeous blossoms everywhere. Hard to imagine they only have 60 gardeners. Dave said they must have hundreds of weeders. Linden promptly decided to start redesigning our yard at home. We told her to have at it!

After the gardens, we spent a pleasant afternoon strolling around Victoria. The Royal BC Museum was remarkable. It’s collection of Pacific Northwest native art was stunning. Rooms full of towering totem poles. Masks depicting the entire pantheon of native mythology, spirits, and heroes. Basket work with intricate designs of orca and ravens. Along the harbor native people were carving, weaving and selling their wares. It was a nice continuation of what we saw earlier, even if it was only for the sake of tourists.

The day ended with a ferry trip back to the U.S. The wind and rising tide made for an adventurous roller-coaster ride. Not so good if you get seasick but, as all of us seemed to be good sailors, it was a lot of fun.

So now it’s back to the mundane—laundry and oil changes. More adventures will ensue before this trip is over but taking a breather for chores and a bit of reality isn’t a bad thing.

No comments:

Post a Comment