Wednesday, October 3, 2012

The Trip - Part One

From Crofton to the Fraser Valley 

It's taken me the better part of the day to sort through the couple of thousand photos I took on our twelve-day trip from Vancouver Island to the Fraser Valley to Penticton to Vernon to the Fraser Canyon and back to the Fraser Valley, Cloverdale, and Crofton (total distance travelled, return, approximately  1500  km).  In the interest of keeping the posts short enough to be readable, I've divided the account into several entries, which will get posted over the next few days.  This post takes us from home on Vancouver Island, to the Fraser Valley, starting a few days before departure and ending the second day of the journey.

For some reason, packing for a trip always results in a last minute panic.  Though I had made out my lists of what to take (Eddie's stuff, my stuff, camping stuff, stuff for my mom's birthday, camera stuff, and other stuff) well in advance, there's always something to distract me from the actual packing and preparation.  For example, the week before the trip, we had our charming friend Sasha come to stay for a few days.  And who can get any work done with this sweet girl wanting attention?

Sasha comes to visit

Then two days before our trip, we had an unexpected overnight guest - two of them, actually.  Becca, who is a Turtle Gardens Rescue alumni, and her mama Wendy missed their last ferry back to Salt Spring Island While pondering what to do, they happened to see Eddie and I out for our bedtime walk.  A glass of wine turned into a late night/early morning chat and two guests in the spare room.  Becca and Eddie posed prettily for photos (the wine, obviously, had affected my awareness of messy backgrounds and bad lighting - or perhaps I just wasn't expecting them to be so cooperative!):

Turtle Gardens alumni Becca, and Eddie

Kicking our guests out early the next morning, I managed to get everything accomplished  - with a little help (or perhaps hindrance) from Allie who tested out each container and suitcase and supervised each move.  Allie was staying home, to be looked after by our neighbours.

Allie supervises the packing

and we were on our way, catching the 12:45 ferry by the skin of our teeth - the second to last car to fit on the boat, leaving a half dozen others behind.

Leaving Nanaimo harbour

Thirty minutes before we reached the mainland, I felt my sinuses stuff up from the air pollution.  I was momentarily distracted, however, by the large colourful cargo boats sliding in and out of  Coal Harbour.

Cargo boats head out to sea

This one made me laugh - I could have sworn the name read "Happy Lloyd" and thought that was a great name for a boat - but upon uploading the photo to the computer found I had misread it!

Happy Lloyd!
Ninety minutes of driving across the lower mainland and my head ached from pollution, traffic, noise, city life at a fast forward pace.  Ugh.  Already I was missing my island home.  We arrived at our friend's place in Abbotsford in time for dinner, but first had to carry Eddie down the few steps to our basement 'suite' in their home.  I stay here often, but it was Eddie's first visit and he is terrified of stairs. It was the beginning of a lot of lugging the 37 pound sheltie up and down, up and down, in and out, at each place we stopped.  Thank goodness he lost those 13 extra pounds he carried last winter when I first met him.

After dinner, Eddie, my friend Ann, and I drove over to Hearts on Noses pig sanctuary, to drop off seven boxes of apples which my friend Else had gathered from all her friends and neighbours - thanks, Else!  I also took a box of fresh veggies from my garden for Janice, the sanctuary owner.  Needless to say, the van was quite a bit lighter once those were delivered. It was almost dark when we arrived, after stopping to photograph the sunset.

Sunset enroute to Hearts on Noses

Scotch, Soda and the 'babies'  - the herd of 12 that I fostered for nearly two years - came running to greet us,

Well, it's about time you came to visit, Foster Mama!

Aren't I a handsome boy now?

and Eddie had his first nose-to-snout meeting with a pig.  He passed the test just fine.

Eddie:  Yer one heck of a funny-looking dog!
Piggy:  And yer one heck of a strange-looking pig!

Back across the river to our home for the night, a good sleep and a hearty breakfast, and we were on our way again.  Next stop:  Penticton.


Anonymous said...

Hi Jean,
As far as me & Bekka are concerned, our unexpected visit turned out to be well worth the missed ferry.
We enjoyed it and thanks a million for the comfy bed to crash on!
Next time you are on Salt Spring we'd love to have you & Eddie over for a visit here.
I Look forward to hearing about the Okanogan... I intended to go exploring &camping there myself this summer... but it didn't happen.

georgia little pea said...

I love packing lists. I've already started making mine for our proposed Christmas road trip LOL.

I'm surprised to see tall buildings on your island. You're not in the boondocks after all! Did Eddie ever get used to stairs and elevators? What would've happened if you'd just left him (at the bottom or the top of the stairs)? When we first got Georgia, she was iffy about some metal stairs in the park. I just left her at the bottom and kept walking on and after some uncertainty, she made her shivery way up. I was cruel. But these days, she runs up and down them so it worked!

Happy Lloyd comes here too!

Jean said...

GLP, the tall buildings (though not tall by Vancouver standards) are hotels in Nanaimo, one of the two 'large' cities on the island. The cities aren't very big by mainland standards - Nanaimo has a population of about 84,000, and the city of Victoria about the same though the greater metropolis area of Victoria brings it to about 340,000.
Fortunately I'm a good hour or more away either of the 'big' cities (one to the north of me, one to the south) - I think I've visited them each twice since moving here three and a half years ago, except for catching the ferry which is on the very outskirts (my side) of Nanaimo.
No Eddie never got used to stairs and elevators. By the end of our three night stay with the hallway/elevator combination, he slunk along the hallway on his own four legs - the very last time, as we left the building. By that time his crate and belongings were in the car and I think he knew we were leaving! Several times I went up or down stairs without him, and at first he just whined and barked, but after that he just lay down and waited for me to return.Even dried liver treats don't persuade him to take even the shortest flight of stairs into or inside of a strange house. I'm betting there's something in his history that I don't know - he's fine on most stairs in parks.
Wendy, we'll come for coffee or meet you for lulnch somewhere next time we're on Salt Spring but I don't think Eddie is in favour of any more overnight trips anywhere!

Mama Zen said...

What fabulous pictures!

Happy.Bark.Days said...

The weather looks lovely. Autumn has always been my favourite time of the year. I often carry Lil' Miss Maple up and down the stairs as well, not because of her fear but because of her clumsiness... she can get a little enthusiastic at times and will miss a step or two with her short legs, which then sends her off tumbling. Miss Maple weighs in at 3kg, so it's like picking up a small sack of potatoes. At least Eddie helps to give your arms a good workout!

georgia little pea said...

TWO cities on the island! Wow, I am reconfiguring my thoughts.

Poor Eddie. Something truly horrid must have happened in his past. Hopefully, he'll get over it one day. Sometimes, it just takes time. When we first got Jordan, he refused to get into the car and had to be carried in each time. We tried everything, including treats, tricks and just relaxing in the back (it was a station wagon) to prove it wasn't a metal monster but he staunchly refused for YEARS. Then one day... :)