October 7: Found the Big Trees, and the Way Home (Finally!)

Headed for Vancouver again in the truck … along the River Road as a break from the endless traffic jams on Highway 1.  The route took us close to Granville Island, and since we always enjoy the entertainment, market, and food there, we stopped in for lunch.  Eating outside can be hazardous, since the huge seagulls will steal food if you are not careful.  One small child was holding a piece of pizza, and became seriously distraught when a bird stole it.   We protected our fried oysters and calamari, and justified this seriously damaging food by claiming we were only in BC for a little longer!

Big Tree in Stanley Park

Big Tree in Stanley Park

Then to Stanley Park and a fairly long walk to use up some excess calories and look at the big trees. Many of these were destroyed in a windstorm in 2006, but some of the very large ones survived, as they have done since the 1400s.  A truly wonderful park, and well worth this second visit.  This park is a real gem — the woods are fantastic, and as you travel around the park there are tremendous vistas of the ocean, Burrard Inlet, False Creek and Vancouver.


Uprooted Tree

Uprooted Tree

But a fallen monster tree is truly a sad sight

 We tried to drive home before the rush hour, and were doing well at first.  Then we turned on River Road, and I made the mistake of being smug.   “Not much traffic here Elaine … we are doing better than all those guys on the big highway, eh?”.   Then the road started to seem unfamiliar.  Did we come this way?   It was only when the road ended in a new subdivision at the tip of an island that we realized we were on the wrong road.

Are we lost ... or what?

Are we lost ... or what?

We parked by the river and did some serious studying of the map.    We were on River Road all right, but there are two different river branches, and two different River Roads … the better to confuse Easterners.   One River Road led nowhere, and, when we found it, the other led us home.  Of course we were now in the bad rush-hour traffic, and I was contrite.  One should NEVER be smug!!

 Of course we could buy a GPS, but apart from this gadget sometimes leading you even further astray, we would have missed the amazing number of log rafts with the attendant tugs, and the old Chinese lady herding her pair of hens … the better not to lose her truly free-range eggs.   We would have also missed a fascinating interview on the satellite radio with John LeCarré, and, after all, time has less meaning when you are having fun.


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