We took off midday Wednesday, and dropped in unexpectedly at friends in Calgary. We went to a their sons hockey game, caught up on families, and stayed overnight. Next morning we headed for Highway 3, a southern route that winds and bumps along the border, and is one of the loveliest drives in all of southern BC. There was some of this.
It couldn't have been all that bad. The highway construction crews worked through it. We stopped for the night at Oosoyos in the southern Okanagan Valley. We stayed at Nk'Mip (Inkameep) , which also has a lot of this, and a really fantastic museum, and cultural centre, and this, plus a winery serving and selling fantastic wines. It is one heck of a place at any time of the year. We liked it so much we went back later and stayed another night.
On to Vancouver, to visit SS's parents, who live in a community known as Deep Cove. It is part of North Vancouver, but has retained a unique character, and beauty. It reinforces my admiration of SS who left this wondrous rain forested place to go Fairview Alberta, way north, way flat, and way not a city. The photos don't do Deep Cove justice.
Next Day took us to Whidbey Island, and Seattle, where I found a friend. Mostlylurking comments here occasionally, but I met her at Achenblog. It was a traditional BPH, with sharing of foods and beverages, though not beer (it was Sunday and early in the day) but like all BPHs, the company was grand, and the conversation wonderful, and laughter never far away .
Mostly and her husband welcomed us into their home. She showed me a scarf she is working on right now that I coveted, but only a little. Sue knits lace, way advanced from socks, yet she has not done socks. I left her a little Canadian pack, needles with a metric and US identity, some yarn and a sock book from Lucy Neatby. I will lead her down the garden path to socks with only a little shame, and absolutely no apologies. We ran out of time to get to a yarn store, which she had researched carefully, and I was really looking forward to, but ah well, I shall find them online. Mostlylurking also showed me her garden. Many little treasures hiding amongst many other treasures. Wow.
Mostly is modest about her accomplishments, as is her husband. His work takes my breath away. Literally. Its a crying shame that the Internet only shows you a glimpse of the beauty of his work. When you see the pieces in person, you don't recognize them as leather, indeed you can't tell what the material is, you only know that it is a deeply personal statement between man and material and our connection to earth, our connection to spirit. There is some serious talent in that gentleman. Breathtaking.
The weather was rainy and the forecasts were not looking good. We decided to head back to the Okanagan rather than follow our original plan of going to the Island. Along the way we came across Leavenworth WA. these folks are very serious about their town. This is a back alley.
They have a main square, surrounded by shopping (seriously fine shopping, Mr Needles made me leave my wallet in the van for) and lovely hotels and guest houses and places to eat. I'm going to go back there sometime, for sure.
Onward to Oosoyos and up through wine country. Ah Wine Country. I can't say a whole lot about that except next time the Needles's are taking a chauffeured bus. Wine country and driving a camper van means you have to stop for the evening really early in the day. Thankfully, there was always another vineyard and winery down the road. We managed to find places like this.
We sat a lot, sipping fine wines from small but seriously good wineries.Ehrenfelser, oh Ehrenfelser, I salute you. It might be principally grown and sold here right now, but it will soon be out of my price bracket. I also saluted my share of Gewurztraminer, some Pinot Blancs and Pinot Noirs. We did manage to get some wine home, but because most of our choices are not generally cellaring wines, we will have to manfully try to get them taken care of as soon as possible. It won't be hard.
There was much yarn work accomplished, but I'll save that for tomorrow.