Happy Canada Day!
We spent three misty, cloudy, but strangely lovely days in Whistler B.C. on our way to Prince George. This was a trip I had been meaning to take for about 15 years. It’s just such a beastly long drive, and entire 300 mile stretches of road have no food (more on that in my next posting). I took the journey with my parents in my twenties, and had fish and chips along highway 97 that were unforgettable, but not in the Nat King Cole sense.
But my favorite uncle, who resides in the far north, had just completed a cycle of chemotherapy, and I thought, if not now, when? We decided to journey by way of Whistler so we could see what it looks like beneath the snow. The village, nestled in a gorgeous valley, is an international destination packed with all manner of fit, scruffy men with accents. I actually came upon a man chopping wood, and my husband had to wave his hand in front of my face to break my reverie. Is this the lumbersexual trend I have heard about? Let’s just say I had to ask for directions, a lot.
On our first morning, we set out on foot for Lost Lake, despite low clouds that resembled Olympia much more than I would have liked. My husband made the mistake of grousing about the weather to a Scotsman, who said, “ACH! It’s fine weather for hiking yu wee bawface feartie eejit!!” or something like that, so we had to go. This was a family hike, mind you, so I was carrying a cup of tea and wearing jeans and mascara. Had I been on a serious hike, solo in the wilderness, I would have worn waterproof mascara. Weather is unpredictable at higher elevations; best to play it safe.
No one was swimming in the picturesque lake since it was chilly and drizzly, so I jumped in and had it all to myself. Some children on the dock watched saucer-eyed from under their parka hoods. “Mommy, what is the weird lady in pink underwear doing?”
“Everyone is staring at us,” I laughed. ” Not us, honey,” my husband said.
Afterwards, I attempted a discreet clothing change while my children retreated a safe distance to skip rocks and pretend to be orphans. Upon completion of the hike, we were ravenous, (my husband was so hungry he mistakenly described himself as “ravishing”) and repaired to Splitz Grill, where I had the teriyaki salmon burger. From the chalkboard of a jillion toppings, I chose sauerkraut and marinated carrots. I plan to marinate carrots once I get home and make them my signature condiment. I asked for pickles and hot peppers on my sandwich as well, but the man putting it together shook his head sadly, then acquiesced to placed them on the side.
That day also saw a trip to the Aussie inspired Peaked Pies. This place convinced me that my husband was not being unreasonable the time he requested that every meal henceforth be served in pie form. It’s such a practical food delivery system! At PP you can “peak” any pie with a teetering, delectable mound of mashed potatoes, mushy peas and gravy, causing my husband to get that “you complete me” look on his face I haven’t seen since we were courting. I split a Mental for Lentil and (curried) Veggie with my daughter; both were superb. None of us got the Hopper, (kangaroo) though my husband was curious, and my children were horrified.
It was my favorite kind of day, spent hiking, swimming, eating and embarrassing my children. My oldest is shaping up to be a first rate hiking companion. We all agreed the youngest is lousy, but that may have been a result of hunger.
As we left Splitz, I saw a poster for a Miss Canada Day bikini contest. Alas, we were planning to be south of the border by then, so I wouldn’t have a chance to steal the day in my jog bra and undies. It wouldn’t be very sporting anyway, for a Yank to make off with the prize money.