Rick's Canadian Adv...
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Rick's Canadian Adventure!

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Rick arrived in Canada on Sept 10th. His plane landed in Vancouver, and he then took public transit (skytrain & bus) to Horseshoe Bay ferry terminal. He just missed the 3:30 PM ferry to Nanaimo's Departure Bay, where I would be meeting him. So he spent a couple of hours acclimatizing and admiring the views. I hope he shares some of his photos here - it looks lovely, even if it was cool and rainy!

He eventually arrived as it was getting dark and we had a short, uneventful journey to my home, After lots of chatting, and a light snack Rick went off to bed in our open loft (the guest suite is not very private) and as it was dark he was able to get a good sleep which helped with the jet lag. Poor guy had been up for over 24 hours by then!

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View from the loft

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And so to bed ...

Topic starter Posted : 13/09/2018 1:31 pm

Yesterday we had torrential rain in the morning. Things did not look good for poking our noses outside!

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Fortunately it cleared up by afternoon and we went for a little walk around the neighbourhood. We walked along the rocky shore and took some photos. The clouds obscured the mainland mountains, but we could see some of the larger islands in the background:

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In the last photo you can see how clear the water was (directly behind where we were standing). Rick was not tempted to jump in for a swim! :D

Topic starter Posted : 13/09/2018 1:40 pm

Today we went to visit the nearby Englishman River Falls. It was fine when we left the house, but rain started when we got to the falls 20 minutes later.

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After spending some time taking photos and viewing the falls from above, we decided to take the trail loop to the lower pools, then re-crossing the river and back up (breathlessly for some) to our starting point.

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Rick couldn't resist getting to the edge of the water and testing it to see how cold - he said it wasn't too bad. The trees were old and dense and there was much moss and ferns - hard to believe that this rain forest had been in a drought all summer!

On the way back up Rick showed us how big these hollow stumps were!

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We made it safely back to our vehicle without encountering any signs of bears, much to Rick's relief.

Topic starter Posted : 14/09/2018 5:28 pm

It really started to rain very hard after we left the falls, so we took a short drive to the nearby "Goats on the Roof" market.

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Unfortunately it was raining so hard we couldn't see any goats, so the above photo is one from the 'net. We dashed inside to wander around and see what wonders there were to purchase. And the first thing we came across was ...

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It was so colourful inside the store with all the lanterns hanging, that a few more photos were taken:

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(No - he didn't buy it!)

We left shortly after for a meal at the nearby 'Trees' restaurant - where Rick appeared to enjoy a rather large burger!

Topic starter Posted : 14/09/2018 5:46 pm

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Horseshoe Bay, it started raining when I arrived there and the rainbow appeared.

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Water fountain in Horseshoe Bay

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Marina next to Horseshoe bay ferry terminal

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Moody view from the ferry

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A sunset view

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View from the point at the end of Vanislanders street.

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Mount Arrowsmith early this morning

Posted : 15/09/2018 4:42 am

OMG what an adventure already :) Rick has been blessed with 2 amazing people to allow him to stay and experience something so priceless xxx

Need to get my butt over there!!!

Posted : 15/09/2018 12:20 pm

It would be lovely to see Kim and Mick out here! ♥

We are keeping busy with Rick - days are flying by. The weather has not been great, but it's so much like the weather Rick is used to in UK that it doesn't seem to matter too much.

Yesterday we drove around the Nanoose peninsula, which is the general area where we're located, looking to see how many deer we could find (in peoples' yards). We saw many, munching on garden plants, and Rick did take some photos. I didn't have my camera, so have no pics.

First we stopped at Schooner Cove to admire the marina, then up onto the ridge above, where we decided that the many grand homes would appeal to Kim! Maybe Rick will show some of his photos? :-)

Today it was supposed to rain all day, but it brightened up a bit and we went into Nanaimo to the big mall there.

Before that, though, Rick did something very heroic (and touching). I'm sure he'll explain and show you pics of Rick, the Finch Whisperer! :

Topic starter Posted : 16/09/2018 12:22 pm

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The local deer munching on peoples front yards.

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Ridiculously steep driveway!

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As for the "Heroic" part of today, I heard a bang on the window and decided to check it out, a goldfinch had flown into the glass and was on the ground in a daze so I went outside in my socks (they got soaked through!) scooped it up and placed it under a plant in a pot to recover, it was a good 15 mins before it come to enough and thankfully fly off again!

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Mistaken Island with a rainbow.

Posted : 16/09/2018 3:23 pm

Keep the narration and photos coming, Van and Rick. They’re excellent!

Is that your driveway, Van?

Posted : 16/09/2018 3:45 pm

We almost forget to tell of the raccoon visit the other day. I glanced out of the window and saw some movement below one of the bird feeders, and sure enough it was a couple of raccoons. We watched them for a while, before mama raccoon spotted us. Rick was very happy to see them, as he was beginning to wonder if they'd put in an appearance during daylight.

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I have no doubt that there will be many more sightings of these masked bandits! They seem to have discovered a way to pull down/shake the tube feeder with the shelled seeds - every time we think it has been made raccoon-proof they work around it, and find new ways to get at the seed and spill it out on the ground below

Topic starter Posted : 17/09/2018 6:27 am

And now to today!

Rick rescued another bird today - this time it was an even smaller one - a Pine Siskin. We heard the thud on the window, and at first saw no sign of a bird outside, but then I stepped outside and saw it spread-eagled on the ground. :( We have had a Hawk around for the last few days and I think it has been frightening the birds off the feeders, and they scatter in all directions.

Rick picked it up, cradled it in his hands, stroked it until he saw signs of life, then gently placed it in the large planter beside the window, in the shade of the hydrangea growing there.

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You can see it is still dazed in that photo - poor wee thing! But after about half an hour it was sufficiently recovered to hop to the edge of the planter and fly off. :-)

This all happened before the pancake brekkie!

I don't make them very often, but I gather the blueberry pancakes must have been OK as all were eaten, along with rashers of bacon and maple syrup!

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Even so, in the photo below it does look as though he was not enjoying ... having his photo taken?

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(he did give permission for me to post this!) ;)

Topic starter Posted : 17/09/2018 6:38 am

Today we went to Qualicum Beach, which is a very pretty town. Rick visited our favourite gift shop, and was contemplating absconding with one of the cats, but he saw the Mountie was watching him!

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After visiting many of the stores I was exhausted, so we decided to go to the beach for an ice cream

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Later, we spotted something that had washed up ...

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But it turns out it was Rick, enjoying the view (that's Hornby Island, of Hornby Eagle fame behind him).

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We headed back home, and later that evening it was looking like there might be a good 'photo op' down on our little deck, as the sun was setting. It was the first time Mt. Arrowsmith had been seen for several days.

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Topic starter Posted : 18/09/2018 1:28 pm

Today was a lovely sunny day - the first one since Rick's visit, so we decided to go visit a real rain forest! We went to Cathedral Grove, about 25 minutes away.

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On the trail

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It helped to see how huge these trees are when Rick was standing there!


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After a leisurely stroll through the forest, we headed on to Port Alberni, on the west coast - story and pics to follow

Topic starter Posted : 19/09/2018 3:49 pm

So ... we went to Port Alberni yesterday, at the head of a long inlet (fjord) that stretches to the west coast.

First place we stopped was at the Clam Bucket https://www.clambucket.ca/ for lunch, where, fortunately for Rick they had burgers, as well as mostly seafood.

After stuffing ourselves we went down to the Harbour Quay - it was lovely - sunny and warm!

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Here's a fishing boat for Bruce - think that's Rick off to the side (cowering under the eagle)!

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The clock on the tower was out by 2 hours - think Rick climbed up there too!

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There is a lovely fountain there - beautifully carved fish - and the other side of Mt. Arrowsmith (which is normally viewed by us from my home) ... Oh and I think Rick perched on the fountain edge!

Rick perked up when we saw our first bear ...

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And he smiled when anticipating the pumpkin pie he thinks I'm going to make for Canadian Thanksgiving next month. :)

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Topic starter Posted : 20/09/2018 10:18 am

Qualicum Beach

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Cathedral Grove

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Port Alberni

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Recent Sunset

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Posted : 20/09/2018 11:54 am
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