Thursday, July 10, 2008

From Rustic to Ritzy

I am trying to upload some pictures from our day yesterday but it is not going that well for me. In the meantime, I will just re-cap the day and see if the pics will actually come up. If not, I will just go ahead a post without them.

Right now, Anne and I are in the Vancouver Airport at a very nice hotel, lingering in their bar/lounge after a great bowl of cream of mushroom soup, taking advantage of the free wireless connection. In a little while we will take advantage of the hot tub in the spa. Also in the spa they have one of those re-circulating pools that functions like a swimming pool treadmill. I think you pretend to be a salmon (and swim against a current) and so in effect, you go nowhere. On a positive note, the pool does not have to be very big to function as a lap pool. I am going to try it as I have always been curious about these pols. Not that I want to get one, I am curious more as a novelty than in any practical sense. (And as this would be a novelty that would cost around $10K, it is a good thing that I am not truly interested in terms of ownership! But that is another story.)

Yesterday Anne and I did a strong asana practice at the cabin- we even both sweated a lot-- and then we went into town for a visit to our Internet provider and I tried to deal with some email that has backlogged. I got somethings answered through another account but others still didn't send. Then I spent some more time on the phone with Olivia from the Anusara Yoga office-- I logged a lot of hours (and roaming cell phone minutes) of this vacation on Anusara Yoga business unfortunately-- and then it was time for SPA DAY!

Anne and I went to the spa where Sarah works for a massage and facial. I got mine with Sarah who is one of my favorite body workers of all time. I have never had a facial before and I actually think my skin looks really different. (Of course, it could be the sun burn from the excursion day that is making it look so full of color..) I enjoyed the experience tremendously.

We then went shopping at this fancy jean store in Tofino where we learned all about premium denim jeans. The woman, Maddy, who owns the store, is a self-proclaimed "Denimist". I never knew such a thing existed. (I did learn that I am not a Denimist because as much as love a good -fitting pair of jeans I cannot bring myself to pay $100 for them and I do not care a lot about fancy stitching and so on. $25 from Target, Ross or 9.99 from Salvation Army is more my idea of appropriate price range!) But I do love jeans and I do love someone who knows their craft and Maddy knows premium jeans.)

I really liked this woman. She was smart, sassy, opinionated, funny, honest and good looking to boot. She gave us an earful about all the different jeans and their features. She sat there in the dressing area where all the jeans are and handed me and Anne different jeans to try on. She made me try on at least 8 pairs of jeans while she remarked on whether they "worked" or not. (Remember how I said she was honest? Imagine: "Those do not work at all," "Oh look how good those look on your butt," "too big-take em off now" and so on it went.) Great fun. I managed to pass on the jeans (see above mention where I discuss that I am more like a jeans-slut or jean white-trash rather than a Denimist) but Anne got a pair that really looked good and she bought a snazzy dress also.

Then we went for a long walk to Sarah and John's to shuttle the kayak back to the A-frame. It was about a 45-minute to an hour long walk to their house from where we were staying. The road we walk along runs parallel (although these are not straight lines) to the inlet shore line that we would then follow back with the kayak. Now those of you who know me well know that I love to kayak and so when Sarah said, "Hey it would really help us out if you guys wanted to paddle these back for us" I thought to myself, "Now that will be a fun little activity for us to do."

But these are big two person kayaks (also fondly referred to by many as "Divorce Machines" not a tiny, cute little pink play boat. And the paddles are not carbon fiber and ergonomic like my play boating paddle is. In fact I think if you flipped over and held onto these paddles, they might even pull you under! BY the end of this little adventure I would be willing to swear that these paddles were not aluminum as they appeared but a lead alloy of some kind. Also this was the ocean, with a tide, a headwind and 50-something degree water that if you fall into will give you hypothermia within ten minutes not the tame and relatively warm San Marcos River at the Rio Vista Park. So just a few details to keep in mind as I tell the tale..)

Well, actually that is the tale. We decided that probably it would be best if we did not each paddle our own kayak. Anne, in fact, looked a tad panic-stricken upon seeing the enormity of the kayak in which she was about to be out out to sea. That decided, John showed us our route on the map. And yes, I went to Prescott College and yes, theoretically I was a wilderness guide but really, map reading in the wilderness is not my forte nor my love. It just looked a long way away.John said if we paddled hard we would get there in 20 minutes. Sarah corrected him and said 3o minutes. I think it took us an hour and by my exertion gauge, we were paddling hard. Although, to be fair to their estimates, we were not paddling in sync so you can imagine the two sisters rowing a kayak at different rates on different sides and looking more like a strange wounded sea creature flailing through the water than a graceful, coordinated sea vessel.

About an hour later we made it to the A-frame. We were pretty tired, very hungry and had just enough arm strength left to haul the boat up onto the shore. (I am making it wound worse than it was but it was kind fo epic there for a while...)

We got some dinner in town and then came home, watched Big Love and fell asleep pretty quickly.

Out on the water My view for much of the paddle- the bakc of Anne's head!
Anne, taking a picutre of me. What you canot tell from this is that Anne could not turn around easily in the kayak so she turned the camera around, placed it on top of her head and the took the shot without turning around.
Me, taking one of myself since I had no confidence in the one that she took!
A view of what was behind us.
Which brings us to today. We spent the day pretty much in route and reflecting on the great trip is was and how worth the effort it was to get all that way out to Tofino. So, while more could certainly be said, perhaps the moral of the story is that we should occasionally "Take the road until it ends" and risk falling of the edge of the world because in those moments and in those places we can find the sublime beauty of nature, the generosity of friends, the rejuvenating laughter of sisterhood and you might just return home a little more you than when you left.

1 comment:

Leanne said...

Chris will love this story- he hates ocean kayaking because it is so much work. You not only have to be able to kayak, you have to be able to understand the ocean- and she is a tempermental goddess. Thanks for sharing- you are good for BC tourism! :>)