Saturday, August 26, 2006

Safeco Field

We celebrated D's birthday at the Yankees Game. Given the occasion, I suppose it would have been nice if the Yankees had won, but D handled the loss well. The rest of us had no problem handling the loss at all! Randy Johnson pitched all 9 innings for NY and A-Rod was brought in at the very end (much to the crowd's delight, he struck out). The Mariners won 4-2.

Wednesday, August 23, 2006

Peace Arch

So what do bull kelp and the Peace Arch have to do with one another?

It turns out that kelp used to be harvested as a major source of potash for explosives. Given the current state of paranoid affairs in the U.S., the notion of someone smuggling potentially dangerous seaweed across the border, though not very practical and a bit harebrained, may be a high priority for DHS folks who have now filled several warehouses in Virginia with nail clippers and overly sharp pencils.

It started as a simple problem - we found a 20' strand of kelp on the beach at Fernwood and desperately needed to do something constructive with it. Fortunately, and just in time, we found a bumper to tie it to. It dutifully followed the poor tourists back to their cabin. Saturday morning, I found it hanging from a bush, suffering severely from road burn and dehydration. Somehow it ended up in our car. On the ferry to Tsawassen, it reattached itself to its original bumper. Where it stayed until the unwitting smugglers were pulled out of the line at the Peace Arch crossing and subjected to considerably more stress and humilation than they deserved.

We have learned some lessons: 1) Seaweed should stay in Canada. 2) Border agents should always ask whether you have let your vehicle out of your sight or whether strangers have asked you to drag strange plant material behind your car. 3) Friends shouldn't let friends drive with brown algae tied to their bumper. 4) Some things, like driving past friends pulled over by border guards, can make you feel really bad and yet be sort of funny at the same time.

Monday, August 21, 2006


This long red dock is just down the hill from the Raven Market, on the east side of the island facing Wallace and Galiano Islands.

St. Mary Lake

Salt Spring is surrounded by salt water, but when here, we surround ourselves with freshwater. The lake is warmer and fresher and safer and comes equipped with lots of paddle boats, kayaks, rafts, and a small beach carved out from the reeds. The sinking dock really was sinking this year.

Green Acres

It's nice to have a place to come back to. The kids get older, the parents get older, but until they tear down the cabins, Green Acres stays the same. Games, swimming, reading, and occasional pilgrimages into Ganges. The TV goes into the closet, the internet is several miles away, and our cell phones don't work.


Back to Canada. The Ramada was being remodeled this year, so we tried out the River Rock Casino. Nicer pool, but the waterslide was shorter. We skipped Julio Iglesias and the closest I got to gambling was a stroll through the casino.

Saturday, August 05, 2006


Bikes in Stanley Park and kayaks on Granville Island.


Front row seats for China's exhibition.

Friday, August 04, 2006

English Bay

Nine years makes it a routine. The Sylvia Hotel, fireworks on the beach, and biking around Stanley Park. The only variable is the tides, which tonight were supposed to peak right during the show. We staked out our place based on my best guess, with 40 feet of dry sand between us and the sea at 5PM. M was reluctant to trust my optimistic judgement, while D gleefully predicted my doomed reputation as a coastal geologist. We got the tide right on, and despite some concern about a few little waves, we stayed dry.