Travel Journal

Victoria - June 27-28

(Friday 29 June 2007) by Karin
Hi all, Will be here for a few days so I should tell you a bit more about this place I guess.
To the First Nations who had lived here for some 10.000 years, the first ship that sailed into their waters in the late eighteenth century was a source of utter astonishment - "a floating island complete with dead trees (masts) and ghosts (white men). Since, the lives of the First Nations, Brits, Americans and Chinese are intertwined in the history of Vancouver Island, but it is the British influence that has prevailed in Victoria. This once bustling international port had all the potential to become another thriving, American-style business center, but became instead a languid, charming city of flowers and afternoon tea. British Columbia's capital city, has a pedestrian-friendly downtown with beautiful restored heritage buildings and a spectacular Inner Harbour. From the corner of Fort and Government streets, you're within a seven-minute walk of seven great shopping districts and everything downtown Victoria has to offer. The short stroll to any of these areas is a walk through Victoria's history and provides a unique insight into the city. Taking it easy these days. I spent most of Wednesday strolling around the city. Did some window shopping, went to the information center and spend half the evening uploading pictures. That just takes forever. Definitely when you still have sooooo many to upload. Not much fun and I almost gave up on it but I figured some of you have been waiting for such a long time that I couldn't do that. I did give up at 12:30 though as I had a walk scheduled for today.
So got up in time Thursday to have some breakfast, prepare snack and lunch, pack my bag and wait for Colin, our guide. Just a small group, six + Colin so really nice. We first drove to Witty's beach. On the way we saw several Black-tailed deer. A nice short walk where we first stopped to look at some Indian burial ground and further along the trail saw some seals, a grass snake, bald eagles, a barred owl and great blue herons. After another drive, West Coast wilderness greeted us at East Sooke park. A little bit more streneous and longer walk awaited us here but still easy. Surroundings..... stunning, beautiful, amazing. Saw a banana slug. These can grow up to 25 cm but this one wasn't that long. All along Colin told us stories about the Indians, the surroundings, etc. and had us eat some kind of pine needle (sorry, I forgot which one it was) and edible leaves. Had some lunch on a small beach, walked up some lava rocks and sat there to watch some otters swimming, catching fish and eating. Quite relaxing. Unfortunately, we then had to go back to the car and Colin drove us back to hostel in Victoria. Felt a bit homesick this afternoon but did go out for another stroll and stopped at the internet cafe to update the log. Went for a run along the Westbay Walkway and decided to go to bed after that instead of eating whatever I came across. A much healthier and better option. Still don't know where I will be going tomorrow.
PS. On Wednesday the Angel of Sharing walked with me and on Thursday, the Angel of Delight.


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