Friday, October 17, 2008

Still Wandering the Island

Hip Hop Cyclist


Goldstream Creek in the Rain

We moved down to Goldstream Park near Victoria on Friday (Oct 10) morning. All the sites are heavily wooded so no solar panel activity for the most part. We stayed four nights and the batteries were getting pretty low. We had to use the furnace extensively as it was cool and damp. RV furnaces are very greedy users of both power and propane but make the trailer very cozy in short order.
We went into town to pick up Richard and Georgia on Saturday morning then returned to the trailer to have a bonfire for lunch. When Georgia heard about the fire, she hoped we were having marshmallows so we had to stop and buy a package along the way. After lunch we drove through Humpback Valley Road over to the West Coast highway and on to Jordan River. We were stopped at a RCMP/Conservation Officer check and when asked if we had any wildlife, Richard said only in the backseat. The CO looked in and saw Georgia and laughed; carry on! We stopped on the beach at Jordan River where there were clouds of seagulls. Just as we arrived they lifted off en masse which was one of those fabulous shots; of course my camera was still in the bag. We did stop at French Beach and spent some time enjoying the big waves. Unfortunately the weather deteriorated as the day progressed so the ocean was not photogenic. Robin ordered Chinese food which we picked up on the way back to R, R and G’s.
On Sunday Aileen joined her friend Bev Denslow to hear Bev give the Thanksgiving service at her church. I wandered around the area (downtown) some both alone and with Mitzy but mostly too noisy and busy for her so she was happy to go back in the truck. After the service Bev joined Aileen and I for lunch at Bev’s favourite Chinese restaurant. After leaving Bev at her sister’s house in Oak Bay, we went to Cattle Point for awhile to get Aileen her ocean fix for the day. The weather was quite pleasant and we were entertained by some daring cyclists doing their hip hop jumps on the rocks and logs. One chap who was very good told us he’s been doing it professionally for eight years. We went out to Sidney to Robin’s parents, Barbara and Allan, for turkey supper. Robin’s sister Nancy and husband Brian joined us for a delicious meal. Barbara had just set the last bowl of food on the table when the power went off. There were already candles lit on the table so Barbara lit a few more and supper continued. Bottom line, if you invite us to supper, expect the power to go out. The power did come on after a couple hours so coffee was then partaken. Aileen contributed a very tasty pumpkin pie that she made in our trailer oven last night.
On Monday Aileen and I had Georgia for the day. After a visit to Bolen’s Books, Georgia’s favourite store, we took her to the trailer again for another weiner roast. It was a bit of a struggle to get heat out of the fire as it was raining fairly hard. Stayed under the awning except to run out and cook. Georgia thought that was okay. After being told many times to come out of the rain, Georgia was quick to turn the tables on Aileen when she ventured out idly. “Grandma, come out of the rain!” Later she and Grandma made peanut butter cookies while I went for a walk in the rain with my camera. I managed to come back with a boot full of water from slipping off some debris while I was crossing the creek. Supper was courtesy of R&R back at their house.
Tuesday was “hit the road” day again. Every morning we’ve walked around the whole campground but for a change this morning we walked down the river trail from the top of the campground. It was very quiet in the campground today. On Saturday they had to open more sites as we filled right up. We had to visit the sani dump today on our way out so it was 11:30 before we were actually on the move. We stopped shortly for lunch at a rest stop on the Malahat with a nice view over Finlayson Arm. We traveled just over 50 kms today. We parked in my cousin Garry’s yard just north of Duncan which is very close to where I was raised. We wandered around the area, went for some walks and did some grocery shopping. I also found time to load the air card (for internet) and office programs onto Aileen’s new laptop so she is fully operational now. We bought her a cordless mouse today so no cord to fight with. Aileen cooked supper Tuesday night and we packed it over to the house. Barb did supper Wednesday night. We’d watched the election results Tuesday night and as the Province headlines said “$290,000,000 and no change”. We had planned to vote by mail but although I filled out the forms online weeks ago for the papers to be sent to Charlie’s, nothing ever showed up. I guess our two votes weren’t going to change anything as our MP took 52% of the vote, or something like that. We had planned to visit my cousin Dale Anderson but only got the voice mail when I called. That’s the third time we’ve tried recently.
We packed up in light rain Thursday morning and headed for Parksville. We had heavy rain most of the way but it dried up about Nanoose and stayed dry til evening. We are once again set up in the parents’ yard in Errington as there is supposed to be a family meeting this weekend to try and decide what to do with Mom and Dad’s house. Some want to sell, others rent, so hopefully we can get past that and get to the point where the belongings can be disposed of. We’re all having difficulty with the whole idea since both parents are still alive and it all seems wrong. However, we can’t just leave everything as it is either since there is no way they can ever live on their own again. The house is not benefiting by sitting empty and there is so much that needs to be gotten rid of before selling or renting.
We are so looking forward to getting off on our and heading south for the winter. We’re so spoiled and not used to all this family stuff and having to wait around for things to happen, I guess. Aileen and I were into the bank in Parksville doing more to settle her mother’s estate on Thursday and Friday. It was so simple compared to what my family is going to eventually experience with our parents. We do have a ferry reservation for November 2 on the Victoria-Port Angeles 10:40 sailing. Our plan is to wander down the coast well into California before heading east to Arizona. No real plans made for AZ. We hope to visit Wendy and Randy in Coolidge before they return home December 11 and Jacquie and Jim in Quartszite in Jan/Feb. Also Lorrie Rendleman, one of our Salmon Arm neighbours, has invited us to look them up in Phoenix.