Posted by: M.J. Bolstad | August 6, 2017

Back in BC: Entry #5


Starfish with a starfish.

I can’t promise this will be the most coherent of my entries, as I am wiped, wiped, wiped. The good news is that for once it isn’t because my health is kicking my behind. In fact, it is basically as a result of having such an amazing day, every cell is basically begging me to go to sleep.  But not yet!  I have an entry to write!

Robyn and I got moved to my original booking today, as the room we were in with two beds had been booked past the first day, but the lovely staff at the Pacific Rim Guest Lodge moved all our gear for us while we were out. We’ll be sharing a bed tonight, but I’ll have this perfect, wonderful room to myself my last night. It’s a great little lodge, and I would definitely stay here again.


“Blue” by Kris Walker, soon to find her home in Yellowknife with me.

We met up with Robyn’s friend M and his daughter today, starting with breakfast in the only place open before eleven in Ucluelet. It was full in the inside tables, so we ate outside even though it was a bit chilly today. I think it was called the Blue Room, and I just had standard diner breakfast – bacon and scrambled eggs, with hash browns and excellent sourdough toast. After breakfast, we did a bit of shopping and I found art that I loved and had to buy, which is unusual for me. It’s a perfect mermaid and I love her, even if it does mean having to rethink how I’m going to do carryon luggage home.


In the palm of my hand. 

After that, it was a stop in the small but lovely Ucluelet Aquarium, the first in the world to do catch and release.  So all the animals are returned to the ocean by the end of the season, and the tanks mean you can not only see them, but you can touch some of the sea creatures as well.



I held starfish – so many of them! – and sea urchins, picked up a sea cucumber, poked anemone to feel them close over my fingers, and looked at fish and crabs and jellyfish.  Robyn may have gotten a little pinch from a hermit crab. I guess she startled him!


Crashing waves, one of my faves

After that, we all drove to the Wild Pacific Trail and did the lighthouse loop.  We spend a great deal of time climbing on the rocks and watching the waves crash and poking at tidal pools.  This is partly why I am so exhausted. There was a lot of climbing, and I had to take a lot of zigzag paths because my legs are short and I couldn’t step in all the places my tall friends can. This is something I am quite used to, by now!

We finished the lighthouse loop, which ends with a beautiful loop past the shore and then into the forest.  No whales sighted this time around, but still super beautiful.  It was slow going because Robyn and I were tired from our climbing adventures, combined with our severe under-caffeination.  So after our walk, we stopped at a café (The Foggy Bean) that sold me an excellent cinnamon bun with blueberries in it but quite possibly the worst latte I’ve ever had. They roast their own beans, and unfortunately I think they burned the espresso batch.


A piece of my heart lives here.

After coffee, we made our way to Tofino, so I could show off my heart’s home, the Chesterman Beach by the Long Beach Lodge Resort. It was just as beautiful as I remembered it being, even in today’s chillier air, the fog misting the air.  We spent a good hour on the beach, and I suspect that’s where the bulk of my time tomorrow will be as well. I love, love, love it with the waves and the water and the soft sand and the nooks and crannies.


A flower and shells left out like an offering to the sea gods.

We had dinner in Tofino as well, as the Beachfront Bistro in the Best Western.  Both M and I had excellent meals, but Robyn’s was unfortunately a dud.  I ordered a slow roasted rabbit pasta that was fantastic, all light tomato and spinach setting it off. M had a seafood linguini that was apparently quite good (I’m not a big fan of seafood).  Robyn ordered the duck with risotto. They overcooked her duck the first round by far, so she had to send it back. The second batch took forever to come, and they had still overdone it a bit, and the meat wasn’t rendered properly. The risotto was a barley risotto but it tasted rushed (the first batch had been better). The lovely waitress gave Robyn her staff discount, but the kitchen really should have comped it.  I’d still go to the restaurant again – two out of three meals were excellent and the service was awesome – but skip the duck.  They are not good at duck.

Dinner was a late affair thanks to the duck issues, so I’m now back. I’m going to sign off, brush my teeth, and collapse now. It was a great day, and now I need to recover so I have energy for another one tomorrow!

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