Showing posts from July, 2018

Camping in a Forest by the Sea

Summer is all too short in Canada, and most Canadians try to make the most of it. This past weekend, we, along with our three children and their children packed up tents (one tent trailer), coolers filled with delicious food, folding chairs, and all the paraphernalia that goes along with camping and drove out to French Beach Provincial Campground, about an hour away. 

The eleven of us (8 adults and 3 children) had two sites and we set up our homes away from home, in the forest, before trekking down to the beach. The waves break upon the shore in constant rhythm, rushing forward to tumble stones upon the sand before falling back to build again. Mesmerizing. 

I snapped mostly beach treasures, with a few forest finds from our hike through trails overgrown with salal trails where it seems few others ventured.

We walked or sat on the beach, with piles of smooth stones that begged to be held and caressed, or built up into stone towers. A few made their way into pockets and carried home where t…

Sermons in Stones

Got your life jacket (aka personal flotation device, or PFD)? One of the best parts of a boating vacation is time to read. Long hours bobbing gently on the water, lost in another world, with periodic times of looking up to admire the scenery. 

I don't like to take library books on the boat for fear of loss, so I collect possible reading material for quite some time, from used book stores, friends, or the occasional new book. Here are some of the books I took along on this trip:

Britt Marie was Here (Fredrik Backman)
The Little Paris Bookshop (Nina George)
A Royal Pain (Rhys Bowen)
Totem Poles and Tea (Hugina Harold)
Mrs. Roosevelt's Confidante (Susan Elia MacNeal)
The Death of Mrs. Westaway (Ruth Ware)
If You Want to Write (Brenda Ueland)
The Curious Charms of Arthur Pepper (Phaedra Patrick)
I'll See You in Paris (Michelle Gable)

and a few more. Lighthearted, easy reading, for the most part. On vacation, I read about a book per day. Oh, how I anticipated the reading I would do on thi…

Reversing Falls Tide Rapids - The Broughton Archipelago Part 2

We've been back from our boating adventure for 3 days now. I'm slowly going through the many photos I took - deleting the crooked ones, of which there are many. It's hard to take a straight photo from a boat that's going up and down and sometimes sideways. 

We enjoyed sensational weather. Morning clouds gave way to curved blue skies in the afternoon. Early in the day, the water was soft as silk and mirror clear. Winds came up in the afternoons, but by then we were usually tucked into a quiet anchorage and very comfortable.

The world is full of amazing things. Roaring Hole Rapids is the gateway to Nepah Lagoon. At slack tide, the rushing water seen above is flat as a mill pond and it's only then that small boats can enter the lagoon. The window for entering is about 10 minutes. Of course, once you enter, you have to stay until the next slack tide, about six hours. We didn't venture into this lagoon.

A short boat ride from Roaring Hole is another lagoon with reversi…

To the Wilderness and Home Again

Ready for an adventure? Tim and I arrived home last night after two weeks in the Broughton Archipelago. You've probably never heard of it, a cluster of islands situated between northern Vancouver Island and the mainland in the Canadian province of British Columbia. It's remote, sparsely populated by humans, and it's wild and beautiful. 

We towed our 25 foot boat to Port McNeill and launched it one evening. Our first night was spent in the marina, and in the morning we set off to explore. Low clouds hung from the mountains, and even rose from the sea, as seen above. Anticipation mixed with mystery. 

As we chugged past Cormorant Island into Blackfish Sound, I noticed lots of small, almost tailless birds flying low and swift over the surface of the water. Hauling out my trusty bird identification book, we determined they were Rhinoceros Auklets. Although they live in the waters further south near our home, I've never noticed them before. Here, they were everywhere. 

They are…

Canada Day 2018

Canada is 151 years old! That might be young for a country, but this afternoon we, along with many others, visited Fort Rodd Hill, a National Historic Site. Constructed in the 19th century, it has never fired a weapon against an enemy. One can tour bunkers, see gun emplacements, and read about the history there.

Adjacent to the military site is Fisgard Lighthouse, a fun place to visit and learn. 

Tim thought he should take a photo of me with my new red backpack, matching the colours of our flag. There was a tremendous wind blowing, and a cruise ship was sitting offshore, probably unable to dock because of the wind.

I've visited the lighthouse a number of times and always enjoy the views from the windows, and the windows themselves, especially the hardware.

We enjoyed a piece of birthday cake, and had our photo taken against a green screen. Our background choice is a classic lighthouse view. We're dressed as World War II participants, in uniforms that fit us surprisingly well. Tim …