I’ve been having way too much fun. I spent the weekend up on Pender Island in the Strait of Georgia in BC. We’re pretty sure Pender is the most beautiful place in the word, and we are completely sure that it is a temperate island paradise.
We stayed at a B&B called Sahhali Inn on the southwest side of the island (go check it out and go stay there if you possibly can). The Inn is on a cliff about 450 feet above the water, with a view of Salt Spring Island, some small uninhabited gulf islands, the northern end of the San Juan Islands (San Juan Island and some small islands), and the Saanich Peninsula of Vancouver Island in the background:
Sadly, we didn’t see any orcas. It’s not really the right time of year, though there are three pods that are resident year round in the Salish Sea (Puget Sound and the Strait of Georgia), one of which came through a few weeks ago. We did see either some porpoises or dolphins (I couldn’t tell which) and lots of bald eagles, like this one:
Since we were up so high, we could actually watch the eagles soaring below us, which was pretty neat. On the other side of the room we were staying in there is a little gazebo, and a duck pond set in this little hollow right below the room:
The pond was full of ducks, especially in the mornings (mainly mallards, who spend the mornings fighting with each other). Around the pond are several trees and a whole collection of bird feeders. I spent my mornings happily sitting out on the balcony (freezing), alternately scanning the ocean side for eagles, dolphins, whales and other interesting wildlife, and watching the finches, nuthatches, juncos, and chickadees on the pond side. I could get used to a life like that!!
At the end of the trip, we took the ferry to Victoria instead of straight back to Vancouver. That turned out to be easier, since there’s only one ferry a day from Pender to Vancouver, but lots of ferries from Pender to Victoria and lots and lots of ferries from Victoria to Vancouver. (I don’t know for sure, but I’d hazard a guess that this is the most traveled car ferry route in the world.) While we were in Victoria, we went for High Tea at the Empress Hotel, which is an event. We’ve had high tea at other places where it’s a big deal (the Butchart Gardens in Victoria, the Mackenzie King Estate in Gatineau Park outside Ottawa), but nothing was quite like this. The service, food, and general pretentious pomposity of Tea at the Empress were unmatched. (Though we northwesterners don’t do pretention very well, and I suspect it used to be much more pretentious. The dress code now says: “please don’t wear ripped jeans, shorts, or flipflops”)
To see the rest of the photos from the trip (as well as lots of pictures of airplanes, flags, funny signs, and hockey stuff), check out Scazon’s Flickr feed.
We now return you to your regularly scheduled programming here on Superplexa!