Tuesday, August 16, 2016

Sequim - Washington 2016

I left Gig Harbor at 7:30 AM and arrived two hours later at the Sequim Prairie Grange.
The Grange has a lot of room for us. We are spread out all over the place.
I went to Costco and Walmart and looked for a Canon camera. Costco seems to have only big, expensive, heavy cameras. Years ago I carried all that weight around.
Walmart had one similar to the one I dropped. I bought it. I had hoped that I could use the batteries from the old one, no such luck. They are different.
Next door to Walmart was a Discount Grocery Store. I bought some of their bargains, such as a large head of cauliflower for $ 1.99.
It is a lot cooler here in Sequim. 
In the evening some of the group watched a movie on Joann's outdoor television. It was actually cold last night.


I did two loads of laundry real early in the morning,
At 10:00 AM we went to the Olympic Game Farm. Disney used some of the animals in the movies.

They sell loaves of bread to feed the roaming animals.
I took very few pictures because I was driving and some of the animals went in front of the car. A bison stuck his head in the car while Curt was giving it a slice of bread.
Elks did the same.

After driving through the game farm we took a look at the movie sets.

Our next stop was a lavender farm. Most of the blooms were gone. The lady who owns the farm with her husband gave us a tour of the barn where they process the lavender.
They dry the bundles and then sell some of them whole sale. On some of them they remove the flowers.
Green flowers are put in a still and lavender oil is produced this way.

There are many varieties of lavender. Each has its own aroma.
In the evening we went to a city park where a big band was playing music from the thirties to the sixties. We had brought heavy jackets but did not need them. It was warmer than where we are staying. A few miles can make that much difference.

This was one of those fantastic days which do not happen very often. I was able to scratch off another item on my bucket list.
We drove to Port Angeles and took the 8:30 AM ferry to Victoria, British Columbia.
The start was not so good. When we went through the Canadian Custom line the officer asked me whether I was alone or with friends. I said I was alone, which is true. We do our own things. Marion was filling out her custom declaration papers which she should have done on the ferry, she heard me and started snickering and said: “friends”.
She wanted to be funny.
I had to go to her and wait until she was finished and we went through the line together.
It took ninety minutes to cross the Strait of Juan De Fuca. We left Port Angeles in heavy fog and arrived in Victoria with blue sky.

Four of us had bought tickets, on the ferry, for Butchart Gardens. This visit was my main objective.
We took the Express Bus. The driver gave us information while we were going through the city.
The Butchard Gardens covers more than fifty five acres of a 130 acres estate. It began from an idea Jennie Butchart had to beautify the worked out limestone quarry which had supplied her husband Robert Pim Butchart’s nearby Portland cement plant.
The Butchart’s collected plants during their extensive travels all over the world. 

I have seen many gardens during my travels. This is one of the best.
The Sunken Garden had me in awe.

There are fountains and even a carousel.

Some of the ponds are magnificent.

The family swam in the lagoon and had their boat there. Now, one can take boat rides.

There are beautiful sights around every corner.

The mansion has a large lawn.

The rose garden has roses from around the globe.

This stained glass window is in a dome but I forgot where it was. I went through several buildings and liked it.

When we came back to Victoria Maynard and I went to the British Columbia Parliament Building. Victoria is the Capital of the Province.

Maynard sneaked in with a tour. I had to follow. Unfortunately it turned out the tour was in French, so we did our own tour.

The Legislative Chamber seats 85 members.

On my walk I saw this area with the Coat of Arms of all the Canadian provinces. 

I took a picture of the Manitoba Coat of Arms because I lived there.

Near the parliament building one can take carriage rides.

In the harbor one can take water taxi rides. The taxis are cute little boats.

Airplane rides are available too.

The ferry docks in walking distance to all the important sights in Victoria.

We took the last ferry back and arrived in Port Angeles at 9:00 PM. We had to go through U.S. customs on the ferry and thought we just walk off the ferry when we arrive in Port Angeles. No, we had to show our passports again and answer questions.
It was a super day. I miss a companion though. I feel better when I can share experiences like these with somebody.

This was a day of rest for me. I went to the library, Home Depot and Walmart. It was too hot to do anything else. Some of the group went to the County Fair and some went bicycling.
In the evening Lyn was leading the group to welcome the full moon. Rich was playing his flute and everybody else made noise with drums and pots and pans.

This morning Jan and I drove up to Hurricane Ridge, in the Olympic National Park, and hiked the Hurricane Hill Trail.

The trail is only 1.6 miles long but the 700 feet change in altitude makes it difficult. Besides, we started above 6000 feet in altitude and that makes a difference too.

In the Olympic National Park are four large fires burning. We could see one fire.

We saw two Marmots on the trail.

Jan wanted to give up shortly before we reached the top. People coming down encouraged her to continue.

From the top we could see Port Angeles and the mountains on Vancouver Island.

On a side trail we saw a mountain goat resting.

Flowers are still in bloom.

When we came back to the Visitor Center we enjoyed a video of the park and a Ranger Talk at the patio.

We lost some people and gained some. We still have room for more rigs.

This morning part of the group drove to Port Townsend and took the ferry to Whidbey Island. There they rode their bicycles around the island and visited a Fort.
I did not do much today. I did some reading and went to the library. At 5:30 PM we left for the Olympic Cellars Winery in Port Angeles for a concert.

Crème Tangerine was playing Beatles music. The band was very good but most women danced alone. So did some men. It is not my style.

We arrived early and most of us had finger food. I had made a chicken noodle salad. A lot of people had picnics.
Some members of the group bought wine and did not like it. A little glass of wine cost $ 11.00. We had to pay admission which was reasonable at $ 13.00 per person. 

This morning we visited the Dungeness Wildlife Refuge.

I had hoped that I could walk the 5.5 mile on the Dungeness Spit to the lighthouse. We made sure that we started at low tide and could have made it back in time.

After thirty minutes I was on my own. Most of the group had turned around and walked back. Yesterday it was hot again, but today it is a lot cooler. On the water it was windy and really cold. I walked to the halfway point and turned around. On the way back I met Randy, he wore a heavy coat and proper head gear. I took a picture of the lighthouse from the distance and it is not sharp.

I also met Lyn. She was sitting on a driftwood log and ate her lunch. I joined her and had my lunch.
When I came back to the parking lot my two passengers were waiting for me. The rest of the group had dispersed.
In the evening we had dinner at the Grange and danced. The band was very good and I danced almost every dance.

There was only one line dance and the women took advantage of that.

Our group sat on one table.

The locals were very friendly. I danced with some of the women.

This was our last day in Sequim. The plan was to go to the Tribal Campus of the Jamestown S’Klallam Indian Tribe and watch the carving of a totem pole. I was first to arrive at the center and found the building closed. At the administration office I was told that the workers sometimes have to work at other places and they did not know when they would be back.
I walked around the area and admired the beautiful buildings. Most of them have native art on the walls.

When the rest of the group arrived I told them the bad news. The women went straight to the gallery where expensive Indian art objects are for sale.
I left and drove to the John Wayne Marina. This was one of John Wayne’s favorite places to fish and go boating. He donated some of the land for the marina.

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