Friday, February 26, 2010

Ganges Harbour Cruising

The plan was to sail from Vancouver to Victoria. I set out to do that at Christmas, too. Then I stopped in Ganges Harbour, Salt Spring Island and used the excuse that my autopilot had fried and I had a leak in my engine salt water cooling system. After that I just cruised Ganges Harbour in my dinghy.

I didn't leave yesterday and the very pleasant wharfinger at Salt Spring Marina taking payment for another night said kindly, "I noticed you were still here." Sleeping in on a boat with the gentle rocking and the cats bum in one's face just goes against the "early start" continuing on to Victoria would have required. It wasn't until 2 pm yesterday that Laura and I had 'breakfast" at MOBY's. She had a healthy 'approved' chicken salad while I had more of MOBY's fries with a side of halibut.

I did a lot of lying around yesterday and completed reading Wilbur Smith's, A Leopard Hunts at Night. I really want to sail to Africa now. Africa is obviously the tourist destination of the 21st century when the tribes aren't eating each other. Malaysia seems equally exciting but the pirates there are forever kidnapping people and now that my mother's dead ,I'd not think anyone would pay to get me back if I went missing.

There are no pirates or kidnappers on Salt Spring Island unfortunately. Being held hostage here would be next best thing to visiting as a tourist.

I got the dinghy in the water yesterday which was a good thing because I could feel that overwhelming sense of accomplishment that allowed me to go back to lying about eating pastry and drinking santa cruz ginger ale while shooing the cat off my face. She seems to think if I'm reading my face isn't being used so would make a great place for her to lie on.

This morning I wanted to run about in the dinghy. It was too late to cruise on to Victoria and because it was raining I just didn't feel like trolling a fishing line over to Bedwell Harbour. I've caught salmon many times between Salt Spring and the Pender Islands and rainy weather is the best fishing weather. That said, TreeHouse Café has great bennies.

Laura was excited by the idea of a dinghy ride. "I can wear my new Pioneer cruising wet gear. I've not worn it yet" She said. So we boarded the dinghy and with the power of the mighty Yamaha 4 hp cruised Ganges Harbour. Cruising Ganges Harbour is exciting and fulfilling without any risk of tsunamis, hurricanes or pirates.

The Treehouse Café has great eggs benedicts. They're brought to the table and we don't have to do dishes after the meal. Laura and I checked out our Facebooks while having coffee. We even talked some before the meal arrived. Then we chowed down in silent revelry. The bennies are really good.

After we checked out the Pegasus Gallery. What a terrific 'space'. Historical and Contemporary Art and Northwest Coastal Native Art. We loved it. There was a piece by the native sculptur whose work is highlighted at the Vancouver Airport. It only sold for $10,000. Cheap at the price. Almost Rodin but I confess, I turned to Laura and said, "I could get a Harley Davidson Electroglyde for that with a trade in of my own Harley". "But your Harley wouldn't be worth two or three times that in 5 years, would it?" said the curator. And yes, he was right but being a barbarian that's how my mind worked until he then told me about 'leasing' art and Canadian Tax write offs. Harley hasn't anything like that so he certainly had pigued my interest enough to say. "I'll be sure to discuss that with my accountant, Anil Aukluck."

The fact is that I bought a number of fine pieces of Canadian art which were great investments but I bought them back when the government wasn't squeezing the art community and had made it much more attractive to invest in Canadian culture. Today they only support the banks, giving us credit for buying RRSP's. It doesn't really matter, my investments to date have gone to divorce, another government supported industry.

Volume II Bookstore was next door to the Pegasus Gallery facing onto the government dock. I used to dock there and remember the dogs happy flights up to land from there. They peed on the rocks. They peed on the plants. They just loved peeing on non moving land after having only the moving water washed foredeck to pee on at sea. Having a stable poop after their sea going experiences was sheer dog heaven on Salt Spring. Then they'd wait patiently outside the bookstore while I browsed. Laura and I loved the bookstore and the owner. Naturally we walked out with a half dozen books between us.

We walked across town to the Salt Spring Island Coffee Shop. They have free internet connection here and we are still having chai latte's. The coffee shops on the island are all friendly, glad to have you hang out , sort of places, like Blenz' and Waves in the city, but more so. Laura's sister lives on Mayne Island, "When I visit there, if she's not at home, I just go over to the bakery because there's a tea shop there and that's where she's usually hanging out."

Don't know where the teen agers go. There aren't any malls and the island. I wonder if they stay home and do their homework or possibly find some other place to have pimples and hormones.

The pubs used to be the main island venue 20 years ago when I began cruising the West Coast in GIRI. I like the coffeeshops a whole lot more. I was a bar tender in London, England and my recollection of the neighbourhood pub was at it's best like these coffeeshops are all the time. At their worst, the pubs were always places with loud drunks and arguments. "Barfight" is an actual word given it's commonality. Hard to imagine a coffeehouse brawl, especially here at the Salt Spring Island Coffee Co.

Now we'll probably head back to the dinghy, buying some more diet coke and kitty litter on the way, the main reason for this expedition, then cruise Ganges Harbour some more before getting back to heavy reading and cat shooing. We'll probably work a shower into the day too having collected a veritable hoard of loonies for the metered water.

Tomorrow, we'll probably head back to Vancouver. I may even put up the sails after we leave Active Passage. It is a sailboat. Thankfully the dinghy doesn't have sails. No guilt there. It has oars though. I feel twinges of guilt about not using the oars. It would be healthier if I rowed. But you can't floss rowing and you could using the Yamaha 4 hp engine. That's something to think about.

I just read in the wash room graffiti, "Jesus died for our sins, so if you don't sin his death would be for nothing." Some days that logic has a certain kind of appeal. At least I own floss. Cruising Ganges Harbour might not be the same as the Vancouver Victoria round trip but it sure has a lazy laid back relaxing kind of appeal. This resting on one's laurels isn't such a bad thing. Like Oscar Wilde, "I can resist anything but temptation." Right now I'm plotting how I'll get back to the dinghy avoiding Harlan's Chocolates which is just around the corner. Someone ate the whole box last night. I think it was the cat.

No comments: