E & A’s SQUASOME Roadtrip!!! (Mon-Tues)

Erica was off this past week- a well earned break from Nursing school, before she begins her 10-week residency at the Pediatric ER. We knew that we wanted to explore Vancouver, BC & when I got a reply from a long-lost friend in Squamish we headed north. Monday we stopped in Seattle, saw the infamous Troll under the bridge and spent a few hours being overwhelmed by the tourists and the traffic near Pike's Place Market.

We headed north to Everett to hang with Kathryn (Erica's Doula friend) and have yummy beer at Skuttlebutt brew pub. We camped out on the floor of her studio apt and left in the morning, Mexican Chocolate Mocha in hand, to continue our journey.

We brunched with Erica's friend from boarding school and rolled into Vancouver for a picnic lunch on the beach!


We soaked up some rays and continued on- next stop; Stanley Island! Rolling through downtown Vancouver at rush hour gave us the chance to admire the tall buildings and pretty shops. Then we parked along the water and went to explore the island park. 10 minutes after leaving the car, I return to grab my wallet and find a parking ticket! There is no sign, no marking on the pavement that indicates a fee for parking! Grrrr. I spy a guy with a reflective vest nearby and accost him~ what can I do about this injustice?!?! He said it happens all the time and that I could go buy a parking pass now and then e-mail the city and tell them the story. Ok. (PS- It worked!!! I didn't have to pay!)

It's still Tuesday, we're still in Vancouver but I'm bound & DETERMINED to get to Squamish for the 7:30pm showing of STAND, a Eco/Oil documentary about a local guy named Norm who Stand-Up-Paddles (SUP) the proposed 350km oil tanker route through Howe Sound.

Norm Hann

Here's the top 5 things I learned:

1- Norm has been SUPing through the Haida Gwaii islands for 10 years and has been adopted into a tribe.

2- Norm is an awesome athlete! He played on the Canadian Nat'l basketball team and is currently sponsored by Quicksilver.

3- Norm is having a baby with my Storer Camps friend, Jen Segger (she's insanely sporty- ie. she did a 6-day race across the Sahara Desert, she runs the Leadville 100, is on the DART- Nuun Adventure Racing Team and is sponsored by Salomon!) http://www.dartadventure.com/index.php/teamroster/22-jen-segger

4- The oil pipeline in the movie is being proposed by Enbridge Oil, who you might have heard of when one of their pipelines spilled 1 million gallons of oil into the Kalamazoo River in Michigan. That was almost 3 years ago and they are still cleaning it up. http://insideclimatenews.org/news/20130128/dilbit-6B-pipeline-kalamazoo-river-enbridge-oil-spill-michigan-keystone-xl-epa

5- SPIRIT BEARS! They are cream-colored Black bears, born only in this coastal area of British Columbia! They are one of the non-aquatic species who would be affected by a potential oil spill. Since the Hecate Strait is more treacherous to navigate than Prince William Sound (where the Exxon Valdez crashed) everyone who lives in the area is worried that a spill is more a “when it happens” versus “if it happens” kind of thing.

STAND Teaser from b4apres media on Vimeo.

After the show, Erica and I headed to Alice Lake to set up camp. The sun went down after 9:30pm so we made it down to the lake just as it got dark and watched the bats darting low over the water.



Haystack Rock; Too bad Percy isn’t a PUFFIN!

This wooden puffin was the ONLY puffin we saw @ Haystack Rock.

I was excited to see the Pacific & convinced Dad to drive with me to Cannon Beach to see Haystack Rock. We drove 1:45 hrs away from sunny Portland to the overcast beach. We were underwhelmed with the weather but excited about the cool seabirds that were circling Haystack Rock. PUFFINS!!! Dad got lots of pix of these funny flying penguin-esque birds. It wasn't until after we called mom to tell her about seeing puffins, that we noticed the informational sign that said those birds wer Common Murre. Bummer. Dad called mom back to tell her about the misidentified puffins & she said, “Well, you've never seen a Murre before today either!” She's got the right idea! Thanks mom!

Here's dad getting a nic photo of a Common Murre!



Voluptuous, Playboy, Girls Night Out, Honey Pie!

Roses have entertaining names!

Dad and I spent Tuesday wandering amount the roses of the Int'l Rose Test Garden. The roses smelled devine and looks spectacular! I had never seen so many roses in one place.

And some gorgeous dogwoods!

Dad I also spent some time in the more serene Japanese gardens up the hill.

There were koi ponds and raked stone gardens and a floral display put on by the Portland Japanese flower-arranging school.

The Ikeban technique utilizes elements found in nature like driftwood or wasps nests! Odd. Dad & I weren't super impressed.

Percy found the perfect spot for some peaceful meditation. Then, while I was in the gift shop, Dad made friends with a guy in a Traverse City shirt who was waiting for HIS daughter! Next week Claire & I are going out for dinner! Yay for more Midwestern friends!


CO day 2: Fun with Troy & Bugs (aka. Beef Wellington is the bomb!)

Jessie and I took Statler out for a hike! We spent an hour or so wandering uphill, crossing raging rivers and enjoying the sunshine!

When we got up to a river that was too fast to cross we found a rock to sit and have snacks while Statler galloped around us. We were up high enough that there was still some snow! Percy was very pleased.


After the hike we got cleaned up (Statler flings mud EVERYWHERE!) then we hopped on the bus up to Beaver Creek to hear some blues and eat some BBQ. We didn't fill up because 2 hours later we had to attend 'Ron's fattening up party' thrown by Bugs & Troy, thrown for the occasion of Ron's wedding ring falling right off his finger… Twice.

Troy really went all out and cooked us BEEF WELLINGTON!!! He hadn't made it for 10 years and it was spectacular! It had pate and truffle butter and was encased in yummy bread! That's Bugs in the top left, showing her appreciation for a perfectly cooked piece of meat! The bottom pix is Maria, giving 2 thumbs up to the Beef Wellington.

Bugs & Jessie check to see if Ron has gotten any fatter. It's a new rule that Ron has to weight more than their dog.

After dinner we played Apples to Apples, giggled as Maria told a story about doing a “Butt Crawl” (aka. PUB crawl) and devoured some Tres Leches cake. Bugs wanted everyone to be so full that they left the party “feeling a little sick.” Mission accomplished. Whew.