la vie fantastique

Map-pugetsoundMy hubby and I went to Victoria, British Columbia (Canada) over this last weekend. It was a wonderful two days, spent in a town that exists partly to govern the Province of British Columbia, but mostly to help you lighten the burden in your pocket book, and make you beg to let them do it again.  We got up at 3:00 a.m. and left our house at 4:45.


I am often up at that time of the day, but not intentionally, so it was no surprise to me that I could hardly pry my eyes open. Then we drove up to Seattle, collecting two of his sisters along the way.

It’s amazing how little traffic is on I5 at that time of the morning–perhaps I will do all my traveling at ungodly hours. And parking…OMG, it was heaven.

(Sorry, too much texting the GKs lately. Makes me want to lol out loud. Might write my next book in textspeak.)

Anyway, I had my pick of prime spots in the parking garage, and found one I was easily able to maneuver the old minivan into with no trouble. I hardly gave my poor brother-in-law, Dave, a heart-attack  at all on the way up to Seattle. He  is a sweetheart of a guy but the man is a nervous and verbal passenger.  The trip back–well lets just say he wanted me to take the Alaskan Way Viaduct, and I didn’t want to.

I’m sorry, Dave. I’m afraid I can’t do that. 

I don’t trust the viaduct. It’s as shaky and narrow as a one-legged ladder.  I’d much rather drive in aimless circles around downtown Seattle hunting for a southbound freeway on-ramp, counting the number of times we pass Nordstrom’s and he doesn’t see the fun in such an exercise. But that’s another post (the one on how our family puts the fun in dysfunctional.)

Catamaran_Victoria_Clipper_IVSo we got on the Victoria Clipper at 7:30 a.m., which is definitely the way to go if you are traveling from Seattle. Victoria Clipper catamarans typically complete a one-way trip in less than 3 hours, in our case, 2 hours and 45 minutes.   To drive there would take 6 hours from our house anyway and we would still have to take a ferry, so why not just leave the car in Seattle and go in style? And we were flying over the water, traveling at 30 knots, which is just a hair over 34.5 miles per hour in landlubber-speak. That’s cruising pretty fast on the inland Salish Sea.

Then we toured the Butchart Gardens. THAT place is most definitely a fairyland.  I can’t even find the words to explain how beautiful it is.  My cellphone photos suck, to use a technical term, so I am using images cadged from WIKIPEDIA to illustrate this:




Needless to say, after a long day of hiking the most gorgeous gardens, and then trundling all over the downtown, spending money like water in Victoria proper, I was SO ready for a lovely meal in what is really a lovely, vegan-friendly city. A long soak in the hotel hot tub, and followed by gin & tonic in the hotel lounge (light on the gin and lots of lime wedges, thank you) and this old lady was ready for bed.  I got on the internet just long enough to check my email.  I wasn’t completely out of writer-mode–I did note my ideas down in my little book while I was on the ferry.

So, while I didn’t get any writing done I had a wonderful time with my in-laws, and that’s paradise, to me.



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4 responses to “la vie fantastique

  1. Your trip to Victoria brings back many happy memories. And of course the Clipper is the way to go. Bouchard Gardens a can’t miss opportunity. We will consider a trip soon.
    Before we moved to Tenino we would sit in our living room and watch the Puget Sound marine traffic always knowing when to expect the Victory Clipper.

    Rich L.

    PS still working on Nanowrimo story from November.


  2. Ooh, memories indeed! I visited Butchart Gardens in 2007 and have some glorious photos – now I’ll have to go back and look at them again! We did what was supposed to be a ‘holiday of a lifetime’, and after Victoria we took the Rocky Mountineer to Calgary, did the Stampede for 3 days, then Lake Louise, Banff and back onto the train to Whistler, finishing up with 3 days in Vancouver.
    Now in the planning stages of re-creating some of it next year, to include Seattle and a cruise to Alaska.
    Just very glad I’m not the one paying – I have a lovely, generous partner!


  3. @Debprah – That sounds fun! Let me know if you will have time while stopping over in Seattle, for us to at least meet for dinner!