Hiatus – Vacation from Vacation – Day 3

Some Sunny Sunday..

We park the car in the small lot the woman directed us to, and walk on blind faith down the street. The park seems obvious once you’re in it, but with every step it seemed to expand further out. It was initially empty, a field infront of an outdoor auditorium, and one family eating lunch. But then we saw the path, curling away and leading down, into the thicket. We follow it, breaching the line of trees, and immediately the zig-zagging path falls away below us. We follow, back and forth, and back and forth, down the wooded walkway. We are enclosed in greenery of all shades, 3 different types of trees, and 7 different types of bushes and ground plants. The occassional glimpse of our prize peeking between the branches. The lower we get, the stronger the smell of the sea, until at last, we break back thru the thicket, onto a known secret escape. Before us lays a wide, wooden boardwalk maybe half a mile long, across the edge of the water. Where sprinkled all along the way, down to the very end, are families, drinking beers, eating lunch, and crabbing.

We drove along the West coast of Vancouver Island, completing the wingspan of Victoria. The road was whindy, reminding me of driving Out the Road in Juneau, the teal blue of the ocean just thru a thin layer of trees to our left, but instead of tall mountainside to our right, we see large homes to our right, looking out over the road to the water.

We return from our adventure just before 5. Though it be a Sunday, I find myself frustrated by the town. Nothing opening before 10AM, and everything closing by 6PM. How does anyone get anything done? But then I started thinking, maybe that’s it. Maybe that is why the atmosphere is so different here in B.C. than in America. No one is stressed out, or angry, or rude. Everyone is so cheerful, and friendly, and so eager to just… chat with you. Maybe letting people sleep in and have time to drink coffee and eat breakfast before going to work alleviates some of the stress of the day. Maybe closing and letting people go home at 6, not worrying about people working too long or needing coverage past 8 hrs of work alleviates some of the anger people feel. In fact… in short, it actually seems genius. The only person I’ve seen running to the Starbucks, was the guy who was finishing his morning run. And the fact that it took almost 5 full minutes to then get our drinks after we’d ordered them, at first jarred me, Starbucks doesn’t make people wait… but then it just didn’t matter. The girls making our drinks were smiling and laughing the whole time. That’s what work should be about…

In the end, we found our English Pub. With its low, wooden ceilings, heavy wooden chairs, and friendly waitstaff. It wasn’t crowded, and two men in the front performed live music. The pub was doing a Sunday dinner special, but it was lovely Bangers and Mash, and a nice tall glass of Extra Special Bitter for us. A nice last night of our Vacation.

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