With Remembrance Day falling on a Sunday this year, all the parades and solemnities took place yesterday, leaving us with a day off today. There are some benefits of both of us working for government. After all the work earlier this weekend, we decided it was time for a family outing.
Much debate about what to do. Nothing too onerous - it was already well past noon by the time we got our act together, and rain clouds loomed. Megan wanted to ride the Mill Bay Ferry, so we planned our afternoon around that. Drive down the Peninsula then up the highway to Mill Bay, then cross back to home on the ferry.
Things didn't start off too promising. As we rounded the Saanich Inlet and headed north, we remembered that it was time for the annual salmon run at Goldstream. Kids wanted to stop, but we were deterred by the heaving parking lot as we drove past. The salmon run is always a big attraction and it's often difficult to find anywhere to stop.
Minor disappointment mended by soup and sandwiches at Tim Hortons in Mill Bay. And donuts. Don't forget the donuts!
With time to kill before the ferry, we cast around for things to do. Again, the things the kids wanted to do were too far off, or would take too much time. More disappointment. Gypsy needed a walk, so we settled for a visit to a tiny park just out of Mill Bay, that we've not noticed before.
From then on, the afternoon was pure magic.
The park was down by the water, and deserted. The trail led up by a small creek running into the sea, and we were treated to our own private salmon run. We stood, entranced, for half an hour watching large fish battling their way upstream.
On the way there and back, we passed a field with a herd of deer grazing. None of us have ever seen so many deer together at one time. Must have been thirty or more.
We got to the ferry just in time, and boarded. This is only a small run, a 25 minute crossing, with room for fewer than 30 cars on the open deck. We climbed up to a narrow viewing gallery overlooking one side of the car deck. Matthew went exploring. When we next saw him, he was waving to us from the door of the bridge on the other side of the ferry. The captain invited us up and explained to the kids how to steer a ship without a rudder - this design just uses the engines on either side to steer as well as drive.
This made our day.
Back to work tomorrow. *Sigh*