Well, the travel season has begun again â€“ starting off with a road trip with my old college roommate, MB.
Left my place at noon headed for CanadaLandâ€¦with a couple of stops on the way:
Since we were going into a “crown county”, we thought we’d gets our crowns on early.
First stop is a WorldMark that I hadn’t tried yet â€“ actually a trade with Vacation Internationale or something like that â€“ Rosedale on Robson â€“ warning, I didn’t take this picture:
But it gives you an idea. We were in a one-bedroom unit with a sofa bed in the living roomâ€¦
Good day and night viewsâ€¦
Not as nice as the WorldMark at the Canadian in the heart of downtown â€“ especially considering valet parking is $30 a night at the Robson on Rosedale. However, it does have a decent restaurant ion the ground floor â€“ Original Joes â€“ were we had cocktails and dinner:
MaryBeth had the Brambleberry, I went for the Royal Buffalo (Buffalo Trace Bourbon and Chambord Liqueur)
My haddock and mixed chips â€“ biggest piece of fish and chips fish I’ve ever seen:
MaryBeth went for the noddle/broth dish â€“ both excellent:
Out at eleven to catch our ferry to Vancouver Island, but first breakfast/brunch at the ferry terminal which has a HUGE food/shopping court. No, I did not have the sugarized apples:
And it was a GORGEOUS day for a ferry ride â€“ and we had a front row seat!
Our room was ready when we got there!
MaryBeth ignored the howling breeze and hopped into the tub. Me, I stayed inside and enjoyed the view:
Before it was cocktail time:
Sort of a “faux” Lemon Drop â€“ Citron Vodka with fresh squeezed “orange lime” juice â€“ we found them at the local Thrifty Grocery. These are organic (hence the code starting with “9” â€“ regular limes are 4306):
Looks like a small orange, but has the juice more like a lemon. And we liked them so we made two more runs to the store over the stay to get more.
As is my usual Victoria journeys, people are invited to dinner â€“ including one of the checkers from the Thrifty:
Our first set of guests managed to drain the bar â€“ resulting in this:
This was AFTER the hot tub, which with a 30mph breeze, was more like a lukewarm tub â€“ with heads bobbing barely above the water line to keep from ice forming.
Wednesday is all about PIG â€“ the restaurant called PIG, and one of the cooks at PIG.
Totally forgot to take pictures of our lunch â€“ I went for the pulled pork sandwich, MaryBeth went for the pulled port poutine (fries, cheese curds, gravy, pulled pork) small portion, which was the size of a small child’s head.
Next up was to stock up on provisionsâ€¦.
Great guy working there who I assume was one of the owners â€“ GREAT customer service.
Two bottles of wine, replacement vodka, replacement whiskey, and we are on our way to the fish market for dinner protein:
Love the fact they tell you what boat and where â€“ this is why I shop with these folks (Finest At Sea) â€“ they are a wholesaler who has a tiny retail store a couple of blocks from the condo on a side street behind their offices, and now, a food trailer out front.
So, they translation to US measures/prices â€“ a pound and a third of troll caught salmon for $22USD which works out to $16.36 a pound (thanks to a 30% difference between the $USD and $CAN).
The dinner company is MaryBeth’s daughter’s boyfriend (who is a cook at PIG) and his mother â€“ how’s THAT for an interesting dinner! And I’m making him cook after I do all the prep work â€“ doesn’t it look GREAT?
And he taught me a tip â€“ give it grill marks on the flesh side, then finish cooking on the skin side â€“ I’d change this to a 45-degree angle â€“ or a 45, and then a 90 for cross hatch.
No hot tub action tonight!
When I hang with friends at WorldMark places â€“ even breakfast is “ensuite”:
That is a coil of sausage done on the grill, Caesars (that would be a Bloody Mary made with Clamato), scrambled eggs.
Today we are off to a CASTLE â€“ and not the one that most tourist go to in Victoria â€“ we are driving to Hatley Castle, not his father’s castle Craigdarroch Castle (FYI, his father died before the Castle was complete). Hatley was Royal Road Military College after the family finished the cycle from rags to riches to rags and lost the place, now it the Royal Road University, mostly on-line but offering career transitions. Thank you, MaryBeth, for stopping a person on campus who must have been in the administration for the great boiled-down mission statement.
It’s “shoulder season” so no tours of the Castle since it is a “living building”, i.e. and Administration Building â€“ but still pretty:
And the lobbyâ€¦
And my favorite lobby sign from its former life:
Even though there wasn’t a tour â€“ there is a small museum in the basement (along with gift shop, and oddly school supply stop):
Back in town, it was time for an afternoon snack â€“ I’d taken the chicken from the first night, turned it into stock, skimmed the fat after an evening in the fridge, add noodles and frozen vegâ€¦and a lovely soup!
Got a lot of use out of that chicken! After we’d had our fill, I packed up four small containers (left over from appetizer plates) for the staff â€“ nothing like a little homemade chicken noodle soup. They are VERY understanding of my life â€“ they even got me chocolates for my birthday in September.
Dinner tonight was a friend of mine who connected over social media and his husband â€“ one of those, “stop by for a cocktail” that turns into dinner. Take the two marinated steaks, cube, skewer, grill, add a couple of salads, and we have dinner!
Another dayâ€¦another castle! This time it’s dad’s castle — Craigdarroch Castle!
Search on Craigdarroch on my blog to see more pictures of the interior â€“ this time I was specifically looking for this one plaque:
Specifically, for this portion of the plaque:
My “faux” nephews Julian and Jameson, apparently names after Julian Jameson (there is a mention HERE).
Love this radiator in the libraryâ€¦.
It was a great tour before getting in line for the Coho Ferry to Port Angeles. But first, LUNCH:
And we did have calamari with those drinks. Honest.
In the line:
On the ferry:
Made the last ferry (Bainbridge) with just enough time to line up and be the last car off the ferry.
Home, MaryBeth headed home, I headed to bed after opening one of the bottles of Duty Free and making a cocktail.