I was really looking forward to this weekend...a "girls getaway" to downtown Vancouver with a close friend (cousin, actually...Glenna was married to Steve's cousin). We try to get together at least once a year when we are back in the area...unfortunately, timing hadn't worked for us the past couple of years, so this time we were going to make it work.
Glenna arrived at about 11:30 and after a brief visit with Steve, we were on our way into "the big city". We are spending the night at the Fairmont Pacific Rim Hotel, a luxury hotel overlooking the Vancouver Harbour and Stanley Park (Glenna had managed to get a corporate rate...sweet!)
We were early for check-in, so our room wasn't ready but we left our luggage and headed across the street to find a place for lunch on the waterfront. We picked Mahony and Sons, Burrard Landing...and although they had tables on the patio outside, only a small number were in the sunshine, so we decided to take a table inside with a great view of the waterfront "happenings".
After a long lunch chatting, we found our way to a local wine and beer store to pick up a few supplies and then picked up the key to our room at the hotel...on the 14th floor with a fabulous view...
This time we chose the Tap and Barrel, another great spot on the waterfront. Of course, we started with cocktails...I had a Caesar...although delicious, it was a bit too spicy for my liking (and I had even asked for the bartender to "go easy" on the spices!). No longer do you just get a stalk of celery with it.
We enjoyed a great dinner and then returned to the hotel where we resumed our positions in front of the window enjoying the lights of Vancouver...and wine...lots of wine :-)
Sunday morning we woke to more beautiful blue sky and sunshine. We had a leisurely start, then went downstairs to Giovane Cafe for coffee and a bite to eat...and after checking out of the hotel, walked over to the Pan Pacific Hotel and our 11:00 spa appointments.
Glenna and her mom had both received gift cards for Spa Utopia. Mom wouldn't be using hers, so she gave it to me...thanks Marie!! We both chose "signature" treatments...Glenna a pedicure and me, a manicure. But it was like no mani/pedi I have ever had...talk about luxurious! We were escorted into a huge change room, where we changed into bath robes and put our things into lockers. Then we went out and relaxed in the lounge until called in for our treatments. Once finished, we returned to the lounge where we could relax and visit for as long as we wanted over a complimentary glass of wine. They also had a table with bowls of dried fruit and nuts, along with coffee, tea and water. Ahhh.....fabulous!
We thoroughly enjoyed our spa experience...but figured we had lounged long enough...time to get out and enjoy some of the sunshine and beauty along the harbour. Glenna with Canada Place and the Vancouver Convention Centre (east building)...
Tap Shack along the walkway for lunch...and then wandered back to the hotel and the car...time to head back out to Surrey. What a fabulous time we both had! A great visit...so happy we were able to fit it in this year, Glenna!
While I was gone, Steve did a little maintenance inside the trailer...finally using some buffing compound he had picked up a couple of years ago at the Quartzsite RV show. The granite counters in the kitchen and bathroom are much shinier now!
Monday was a beautiful sunny day! We had a few errands to do today so we headed out just before 10. First on the agenda was a stop at a nearby walk-in clinic so Steve could have the 3 stitches removed from his back. It has been 12 days since he had the mole removed. He had received a call from the doctor saying that the test results had come in...it had been cancerous but she had gotten it all out. Good news! What we didn't expect was how long the wait would be at the clinic! It was close to 2 1/2 hours later before he was out...that kind of wait for a procedure that took less than a minute! Sheesh!
So before continuing on with our errands, we stopped at home for a quick lunch first. Then we were on our way again...out to Langley this time. We stopped at Intercontinental Truck Body (ITB) where our truck was built...Steve wanted to talk to the service manager about getting the front bumper re-painted. Unfortunately, the manager wasn't in today...so he'll try again tomorrow.
Mt. Baker (in Washington State) is beautiful today...
Tuesday was another gorgeous day...so nice to see so much sun after so much cloud and rain! We didn't do much today...managed to get out for a walk around the campground. Steve went back to ITB (once he confirmed the service manager was in). Once home, he continued planning and researching our trip east this summer. While he was gone, I puttered around doing odds and ends and then did some banking.
Around 2:30 we headed over to Ray and Deb's...they had invited us over for dinner. We went early so that they could take us to a local park that they had discovered. Redwood Park is a beautiful spot...
The unique forest found at Redwood Park is a legacy of Peter and David Brown, twin brothers born to one of Surrey's earliest pioneering families. In 1893, their father gifted them this large plot of land, logged and ripe for farming. However, the brothers instead filled the vast space with their favourite trees from all around the world. Fully committed to their forest sanctuary, the eccentric duo built a treehouse where they lived in solitude until their deaths in 1949 and 1958. Today, a replica of their treehouse stands in the centre of the park.
Magic dances through the timbers of Redwood Park. A magical knoll awaits discovery down a wooded path. When you look through the trees and spot dashes of colour you are nearing the Fairy Kingdom. Whimsical, kind-hearted, fun-loving folk have created dozens of fairy homes. Some are grand and others are sweetly simple. Many of the homes have been created by children. Some of the homes are merely doors built into the base of trees.
After lunch we thought we'd drive the short distance over to Serpentine Wildlife Management Area and hike the nature trail...The Serpentine Wildlife Management Area - better known as the Serpentine Fen - is in a triangle between Highway 99, the King George Highway (99A), and the Serpentine River. The nature trail around Serpentine Fen Nature Reserve is around 3.5 kilometres long. Allow 1.5 hours for this walk.
The fen includes many different types of habitat in its 150 hectares, and is home to more than 130 different bird species. September and October is the busiest birding season. In the winter months, many birds shelter where there is open water and a good, natural food supply. The Serpentine Wildlife Area is managed by Ducks Unlimited.
Thursday was spent on more research for our trip east...and basically just puttering around. After lunch we went out for our usual walk around the campground, stopping to chat with Jack. We met Jack this past winter down in Quartzsite...while filling the rig with water upon arriving. We learned that they are from the Vancouver area and Jack works part time at Traveland RV in Langley.
At 4:00 Jack and Faye joined us for happy hour and we spent a lovely couple of hours chatting. They have done a lot of travelling and we enjoyed listening about their adventures...and picking their brains about places we want to see, particularly back east.
After getting out for our usual walk around the campground, Steve spent a good part of the day continuing with his research of our trip east. While he sat outside doing that, I was busy inside baking. Deb and Ray have invited us over for turkey dinner...she found a huge turkey in the freezer that needs to be cooked. Not being ones to deny a good meal, we readily accepted! I said that I would bring dessert...hence my baking spree. I had decided to make the Chocolate Coconut Tart recipe that I made a couple of weeks ago to take to Chris and Angela's but this time I thought I would try a different crust (ground walnuts/almond flour/coconut oil). However, something went wrong with the filling...don't quite know what, but the filling ended up being very runny and I had way too much! Sheesh! So I ended up making the usual coconut crust, just to use the extra filling. We took the later pie for dessert and although it tasted fine, it wasn't at all firm like it was supposed to be. I went over, and over, the ingredients...but I still can't figure out where I went wrong! Oh well....
After a stop to pick up a bottle of wine, we arrived at Deb and Ray's place shortly after 3:30...and sat outside in the late afternoon sunshine. It had gotten quite windy out this afternoon...the cold front coming in, I guess. However we were fairly sheltered on the patio and it was warm, as long as we were sitting in the sunshine...
And that's it for another week here at Peace Arch RV Park...one final week here and we move to Fort Camping in Fort Langley.