Grace and Lamond’s Canadian Adventure – Day 6

Grace and Lamond's Canadian Adventure – Day 6
Surrey, Canada

Surrey, Canada

12 April 2013

A nice relaxed start sets the tone for the day.
Being pensioners, our breakfast consists of the Weetabix we brought with
us from Surrey, and a cup of tea. Then,
mum gets that look in her eye. I know
I’m in trouble. “You don’t eat enough fruit” she says. “I had
strawberry ice cream two days ago.”
“That’s not fruit!” Hmmm, how
to distract her. “Let’s go for a walk.”

We rug up for a pleasant stroll around the harbour front of downtown Victoria, and
then I get an inspired idea. “Why don’t we drop in to the Empress Hotel
for a cup of coffee?” I get reminded
we just had tea, but we agree that this famous Fairmont hotel is too good to
pass up. The guy in the top hat standing
outside the door raises an eyebrow as we pass, but we smile and pretend not to
speak any English. Having recently
watched Downton Abbey we know that breakfast must be served in the main dining
room, which is located somewhere up the sweeping staircase. A nice young lady, unfazed by our explanation
that we just flew in from Abu Dhabi and would prefer to pay cash, shows us to a
table. Brilliant! The menu lists a “fruit bowl”. Mum seems satisfied when I agree to help
consume the masterpiece of juicy and exotic delights that arrives, and pretends
not to see me wash it down with a couple of cups of coffee. Now the hard bit, paying. We get a pleasant surprise that the whole
affair, including a generous tip of nearly thirty cents comes to less than twenty
dollars – they must have given us that seniors discount again.

By the time we get back to our hotel the rain it’s starting again, so we bundle into
the Jeep and decide to check out the tourist drive along the ocean. The drive is as good as we hoped, though only
one of us gets out of the car whenever a photo is required. A highlight for me is seeing people playing
golf at a spectacular golf course in less than perfect weather. Quite a few of them are wearing shorts – must
be locals.

We stop for lunch at a diner that we happened across by sheer chance. The place is packed with locals who come for the great food and car enthusiasts drawn by extensive memorabilia of American muscle cars and hot rods. A short drive
from the diner and we reach the ferry terminal expecting the normal wait before
loading. The lady at the gate tells us
if we are quick we can still catch the 2:00PM ferry instead of the 3:00PM one
we had booked. We career through a
slalom of loading lanes and ramps and slide to a stop next to some eighteen
wheelers in the lower deck just before the doors are closed and the ferry
surges into the wild blue (well actually grey) sea.

The traffic from the mainland terminal to Surrey is pretty busy and the rain is
persistent but at last we’re home and can put our feet up. Then Kirsty says “Hey Dad. How would you like to come for a quick trip to the US later tonight.
I have to pick up something from Walmart.”

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