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We've Been Busy

Gosh, is it possible that we only have two more months to enjoy this spectacular location? The answer is yes, so we are making the most of the fine weather and beautiful sights to see while we can. As to the weather, while it is raining cats and dogs in Orlando, for the most part, May has been very dry here with nearly 16 hours of daylight! Quite the contrast to a few months ago, that's for sure.

Mr. Peck hit the big milestone of 65 last Friday and has begun enjoying his senior discount with glee. Saturday afternoon, after arising at 4 AM to watch the royal wedding, we walked to the movie theater to see Deadpool, curious about what we would recognize from the next door filming. Amazingly, we ran into both Dale and Jackie there! Proving the point that every big city is a small town if you stay in your neighborhood. To tell you the truth, I was pretty excited about it because, well, after a lifetime of seeing people I know while out and about, it has been strange not doing so. Not that it should be unexpected when you move somewhere new, however, I think you get my drift. That's the thing, we are getting very comfortable here and it is nearly time to leave. I'm actually a wee bit proud that we've gotten to know some folks because isn't that what makes a life great? Enough of my rambling, let's get to some of those activities, shall we?

Rather than a cake for B's birthday, after seeing rhubarb at Nesters, I decided to make him a rhubarb crisp instead. He is crazy for rhubarb. We also had steak at home, something we've had only a handful of times because it is crazy expensive here, despite the fact that Canada produces a lot of beef.
Funny story about the crisp though as this is my second attempt. I prepared everything the night before with plans to bake it first thing in the morning for his breakfast. Except once I began putting it together, I got the notion that I should have peeled the rhubarb and threw it all away. Dumb, I know. I bought another batch and tried again, this time being more careful. While I was out buying the rhubarb, I stopped in to see Wendy at the liquor store for vodka to make Bruce a Caesar as a treat. He is crazy for that drink. What is a Caesar, you ask? Basically a Canadian Bloody Mary. The spicier the better is his motto. Wendy allowed me to take her photograph.
She gave me all sorts of tips about our trip to Victoria, including the romantic place I booked for Bruce's second birthday celebration. Not only has she sold me loads of wine while we are here, but she's become someone I might call a casual friend. She's lived here for ages, having moved from England.

We also can absolutely not forget the pastors at the church we've been attending. Both Gary and Dan are dynamos, and we can't thank them enough for welcoming us into the church family. Somehow they have managed to make the church service a fantastic blend of old and new.
Someone else we don't want to forget is Penny, a former nurse with a sharp wit that keeps us laughing every Sunday.
On his way to and from work, oftentimes Bruce cuts a diagonal through a large parking lot, slated  to become home to a new Vancouver Art Gallery. Anyway, last week he saw them dumping truck loads of sand in said parking lot, so after church/lunch, we walked over to see what we could see. Turns out it was a polo demonstration, as well as some jumping. So crazy in the middle of the city! Before they started, the horses were warmed up and shown to the crowd.
Followed by a man who smoothed the sand in preparation for play.
That would be a VIP tent on the right. 😀After a humorous introduction to the players, the mini version of polo began. As it turns out, we'd moved to not face the sun, ending up directly behind the goal; slightly unnerving to be honest.
We didn't hang around long enough for the jumping, mostly because we'd gotten there too late for a seat, but what little we saw was fun, not to mention, added to our growing list of new experiences.

On our way to church Sunday, we passed by the Davie Street community garden and while time did not permit us to stop that day, I made my rounds Monday morning. Bruce was home because it was Victoria Day, one of many reminders that this area of the world was once ruled by the British. Because so many people live in apartments, without a piece of land to call their own, these types of gardens are not uncommon around the city, in this instance on busy Davie Street.
Many people have told me just wait for the roses to bloom and now I see why. Some are beginning to flower, and just as every other blooming plant I've seen, there are abundant blooms. Plus, most of the roses I've seen have been very fragrant, a wonderful surprise. Naturally, I was loving this color.
Meanwhile, Mr. Bruce went to replenish our wine supply, going with his motto of, if one is good, two are better.
These are the steps we use to get to loads of places and it just so happened that as I was in front of the building, returning from my rounds, I called B to see where he was. Lo and behold, he was just across the street, thus the funny photograph using my zoom lens. After lunch we took a walk. A very long walk to Stanley Park, around most of the seawall in a first for Bruce. "Honey", I said, "you can't live here without doing it at least once!" Seeing the cliffs, and in general, enjoying being along the water is a must-do when in Vancouver.
But first I showed him the heron's nests which are filled with activity. Then we watched the lawn bowling for a bit, which looked very fun. The lady in all white, or so we were told, is 90 years old and a former national champion of the sport.
Further we were told that lawn bowling is an easy game to learn, and a hard one to become good at. On our way to check out the pitch and putt, lo and behold, we watched a raccoon scamper up a tree, and, well, climb in!
There was a slight chill in the air from the wind, however, with such abundant sunshine, the walk along the water was wonderful.
Bruce kept asking, how much further, to which I replied, just a little bit. I lied. Not intentionally, however, once you are walking it is not so easy to bail out. Plus, I wanted him to see Siwash Rock, another Vancouver landmark.
The bridge, featured prominently in Deadpool and other movies, was our next destination, further than I remembered, however we were energized when this appeared from behind the cliffs.
Pretty awesome, huh? It was low tide during our walk, giving the seagulls a nice place to land.
Fortunately I carry around a map of SP in my backpack, so using that, we veered off the seawall into the interior, coming to Beaver Lake which is jam packed with hyacinths blooming in various shades of pink.
As well, there were both yellow and purple irises blooming along the shoreline. Seeing them, I was reminded of one of the first photographs I put out for sale, same subject matter. I also remembered being so thrilled, showing it to Regina like it was something out of the ordinary. Naive, I'll admit.
Which brings us to Tuesday when we set out on another new adventure to Victoria, another must do if you are here for any length of time. Packing a suitcase, we drove the thirty or so miles to Tsawwassen where you board the ferry bound for Victoria and other Gulf Islands.
So far, so good you think and why would you think any differently? We sure did. Following the cars, we got in line, driving onto the ferry like we knew what we were doing. Watching the other folks, after parking your car, you go up some steps to the seating, except in our case, I convinced B to go up to the very windy viewing deck for takeoff.
All of a sudden we were on the move, and this is where it got a little crazy. Looking at my watch, I saw it was 10:35 and I asked B to check his phone as our ferry was meant to depart at 11. Uh oh. What's going on? I'll tell you what went on, in the above photo, see the ferry ready to dock? Of course you do! That was the boat we were meant to board!
We laughed and laughed, or at least I did. Bruce just kept puzzling over how in the hell we could have gotten on the wrong ferry. No harm though, although it meant we had to drive down the island about an hour longer to get to Victoria. Instead, we are looking at it as an introduction to Vancouver Island, and a dry run for when we return in a few weeks for a big fishing trip. We won't make the same mistake twice!

Lots to tell about Victoria, but I'll save that for a different post. Suffice it to say, I checked something off my bucket list, well, actually I don't have one, but we did make it to the Butchart Gardens, a spectacular place that I'd been wanting to see ever since Angela showed me her photos from there.
Peonies and Himalayan blue poppies! Unreal! Until next time...

yours truly,

Gail
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