A Travellerspoint blog

Days in the Middle

sunny 16 °C

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Monday
Talked Linda’s sister and met a friend who sat and chatted with us over coffee. The friend, Laurel, was soon heading to Australia and wanted to ask us questions about travelling the country. We then walked down to the Boat Festival to take a squiz and then joined the Labour Day celebrations. There was this ABSOLUTLEY AMAZING band, The Time-Benders who played on this massive stage in front of the parliament building.

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Lesley also managed to get a cuddle from Plasterman, a street performer, after throwing some money into his donation bucket.
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We then walked a measly 6km around the harbour taking on the spectacular view of water taxis, float planes, sunset and overall astonishing views.
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For dinner we picked up some yummy pizzas before heading back home. Giaan, being a pescetarian grabbed the garden salad pizza (pesto, spinach, pineapple, tomato, and stuff we can’t remember) whilst Lesley ordered a BBQ chicken (the name says it all).

Tuesday
Self-toured part of the Empress Hotel and conference center in about 15 minutes (5 mins for mum’s “washroom” stop). After of course popping into the thrift store.

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This one's for you granny!

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Then we hopped onto the James Bay Express Boat to Ogden Point where Giaan drank a Chai Latte and Lesley had a cappuccino at the Breakwater Café & Bistro.

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From there we continued on another long walk to Holland Point trying to dodge logs and rocks (in other words falling over them. Gracefully. Of course). Just to note, like every other place in Victoria, there were LOTS OF WASPS. And I mean LOTS.

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Back downtown, we popped into 2-3 tourist shops where Lesley purchased some STUFF (what a shock). For dinner we grabbed dinner from a restaurant called FOO, located on the side of the walkway that specialised in Asian street food. The Tofu Pad Thai was WAY too spicy for G but Lesley absolutely loved the porky dish she grabbed, regardless of its heat.
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Lesley and GG
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Posted by The Robbos 20:46 Archived in Canada Comments (3)

Terumi, Sushi, Whales and more

Days 2 and 3

overcast 13 °C

Day 2
Yesterday morning at breakfast we met one of the permanent residents at the B and B, Terumi (from Japan), who offered to drive us around part of Victoria’s coastline. She is an occupational therapist who is trying to get her registration here in Canada. Although her professional qualifications are recognized, Terumi cannot be officially registered until she improves her English. It was a lovely offer and one we didn’t refuse. So this morning after brekkie off we went. Well, it was an experience. Most of the drive was incident free although in the last 5 mins there were 2 occasions when her driving was a more than a bit dodgy - one particular time when she almost turned into oncoming traffic. It wasn't until the next day that Linda
( B&B owner) told us she was a bit hesitant about Terumi driving us around and that she hoped that we had travel insurance. Thanks Linda!!!! Could have mentioned that a bit earlier. Anyway, we stopped at several places and ended up at a gorgeous Marina, had a coffee and saw some friendly seals. Terumi was very good fun and her lack of English gave us many laughs.

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Terumi dropped us down at the local market before heading off to work. We grabbed some sushi and ate down at the harbour. We waked down and saw the markets once again for another browse. Lesley bought some cleaning substances that were so natural you could eat and drink them if you were that desperate ( :) ). We left early due to our need to start blogging and arrived home about 6ish. For dinner mum had bought some cheese and crackers from that same local market and Giaan had assorted spinach and feta snacks.

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Day 3
This morning, Jeff, Linda’s partner, was kind enough to drive us down to a small place near the harbour where we had booked a local whale watching tour. We hoped to see Orcas (killer whales). After we were suited up we hopped into a rather small boat. Giaan, feeling more than a little anxious, had her fingers crossed and hoped they weren’t as friendly as some of our humpbacks from Hervey Bay. The boat trip was excellent. Being only a fairly small boat it was only able to take up to about 15 passengers. It was a high powered speed boat that was able to get up to 110km/hr. After a few hairy moments when our bums were lifted off our seats and what seemed ridiculously like a joy ride we entered the waters of USA. We turned off the engines somewhere in the San Juan Islands. Although the whales didn’t come too close to our boat they were still lovely to see. A little disappointed there weren’t more opportunities to take photos but it was still worth the experience. In the end we saw about 8 Orcas (give or take) and a humpback (still not as friendly and showy as they are back in HB).

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We then walked to one of Victoria's tourist attractions called Fisherman's Wharf. It is a gorgeous little village with many quaint, funky houseboats. From Barb's Fish 'n' Chips, we grabbed some seafood chowder and (would you believe it?!) Fish and Chips. Barb's resteraunt is also a well recognized place to eat.
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On we walked to Ogden Breakwater which was especially nice at this time of day and then returned to our B& B after a quick bite to eat.
That was the end of another full day in beautiful Victoria!!!

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G-bomb and Les
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Posted by The Robbos 21:36 Archived in Canada Comments (2)

Late Start

Full Day #1

sunny 16 °C

Went down to brekkie about 9 o'clock after having a solid sleep. It was beautifully set out. Our breakfast included tea, coffee, juice, a selection of cereals, yogurt, fresh fruit and freshly baked scones with jam and cream. This was for TWO people. Who needs a high tea at the Empress Hotel?? Pffft. Not me.

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We had a bit of a late start due to Giaan completing her schoolwork. Anyway, close to lunchtime we headed down for a walk.

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Thrift Store (FOR YOU GRANNY!)

We spent a LONG time at the Bastion Market Square whilst Les made only 2 difficult decisions regarding purchases. A particularly special one being a bracelet made out of a fork! Giaan bought one with Snoopy and Lesley bought a gold and silver patterned one. I'm sure you can see who is the most mature (G-bomb). There we also purchased 4 beautiful photographs from a lady who photographs around BC with her family. Then down to the harbour.

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Boat Festival at the harbour.

Fortunately for us we came to Victoria at a good time. There was the Blues Festival and lots of market stalls - day and night (just for us I'm sure). In addition, the Boat Festival. We bought snaps for our snap bracelets that we had bought back in Australia. To see more about them click HERE.

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We then headed off to Blue Fish, Red Fish which was a little food cart/van on the right side of the harbour. Thought we'd give it a try, as it had been recommended. Giaan wasn't too fussed as it was a bit oily and greasy. But their chowder looked awesome and we have since been told that it is. However, if we were to go back, perhaps we'd try it then.

On the way past the harbour and up towards the shops, we stopped to watch a professional street performer. He was very funny and managed to juggle fire, bowling pins and knives. He had the crowd on the edge of their seats, applauding loudly, grabbing the attention of passers by. Saw that another guy would be performing later that night and stopped by for that.

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However, before returning to the 'stage', we walked up to the shops to pick up the Love Lettuce from Lush and grabbed and ice-cream for G. Chocolate and Cappuccino. But, Les was too full from lunch so stuck with inhaling the air not the sugary dairy product (like G).
Toodaloo,
Les and G

Posted by The Robbos 21:08 Archived in Canada Comments (1)

After the Planes and Before the First Full Day

semi-overcast

When we arrived at our lovely B&B it was wonderful to be greeted by Linda and her husband, Jeff. The whole atmosphere of the place was homely and comfortable. Linda and Jeff are artists and have been for years, both working with glass and paintings. Breakfast the next morning would be between 8:30am and 10:30am. We were shown our room, given a house and room key and told that it would begin to get dark at 8:00pm.

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Then it was time for a walk downtown, because come on, we were hungry. We timed our walk down to the Harbour and ended up with about half an hour, one way. We popped into the information centre at the harbour and checked out some brochures, maps and walks. Strolled passed shops and looked out for tourist and food (of course) stores on the way back. Then we spotted Lush. Giaan’s heart stopped, skipped several more beats and started back up again. Grabbed the new coffee face mask (isn’t out in Aus, to our knowledge) and ordered to pick up a Love Lettuce face scrub the next day. There was a lolly shop two stores down that sold SALTWATER TAFFY. Although we felt like buying a big bag we only bought enough for a treat t that night. The large bag would have to wait.

We looked for the fish and chips place that had been advertised and was located near our accommodation. However, can you believe it? CLOSED. Then began looking for a sushi shop (Goodness. We love sushi, as I’m sure you’d know) and thought we’d found somewhere but- could barely be called a sushi shop. It was an Asian food store with a small variety of very ‘extreme’ sushi (too many sauces for us). So that was that. Finally, after wandering around for a bit more we decided on Maccas. Just needed a quick dinner because it was getting dark and we were in definite need of a long nap.

On the way back to our accommodation we walked up Pandora Street. Not the best decision we have made to date. There were many street people who looked a bit scary and kept asking for money. Let’s just say we were glad to get back to our B&B. We made a mental note to find a different way home.

Back in the B&B we were extremely pleased to get horizontal and close our eyes. This sleep had been a long time coming. We were looking forward to our first full day in Canada.
-Giaan
-Lesley

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Posted by The Robbos 20:56 Archived in Canada Comments (0)

Girlipoos have landed!

overcast 13 °C

Finally the day came!! We arrived at the airport at 8:00am and flew out from Brisbane airport at 10:30am. Felt very excited but also sad to leave our boys, even the two-legged ones. Grandma also waved us off, after providing a hearty breakfast for the 'squad', of course.

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The fam-bam (excluding granny :( ).

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G and Les

After surviving customs, Giaan guzzled down a Mango Energizer Boost Juice, her last one on Australian soil for nearly 2 months. The flight to LAX was long. 14 hours long to be exact. Mum slept but G didn't at all. We actually sat next to a someone who was travelling to Venezuela from Australia. He would wait t the airport for 18 hours until his next flight from LA to Miami. After that, it was another 5 hour wait until his last leg. And I though our 4 hour wait was long!!

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International plane at first.

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International plane at second.

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International plane at early morning.

Once we arrived, we grabbed our bags and began searching for the Air Canada terminal for the trip to Vancouver. We met a couple from Brissie who were following our flights and went through customs with them. Then, it was time to handle the wait, before hopping on the next plane, which was a lot smaller. This plane trip was...exhausting to say the least. Although it hosted a serious napping opportunity.

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Wing of Air Canada plane.

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First selfie of many more to come!!

Arrived at Vancouver and went through customs ONCE AGAIN...Longest turn yet. Even though we felt pretty wrecked we still looked forward to the trip to Victoria, (Vancouver Island), on a SEA PLANE!!! Weather looked pretty dubious to be generous about it, but honestly, we were just too tired to care.

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Dubious weather.

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Selfie #2

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Jawline.

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This is the sea plane!!!

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Posture.

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Selfie #3

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Birds' eye view of Victoria (Obviously NOT our Aussie one).

It was great at the end of our day that the courtesy van transported us to our accommodation. Said destination was very anticipated and did not disappoint. Photos to come.

-G and Les

Posted by The Robbos 21:28 Archived in Canada Comments (7)

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