Tuesday, July 17, 2007

A Day in Victoria

Today was the Victoria trip. After a quick cup of java in Sequim, we drove to Port Angeles, parked, and caught the 8:20 ferry to Victoria, B.C. When we lived in Sequim, it seemed like every time we would take guests to Victoria, something interesting would happen on the ferry. Like the trip in May 1995 when the Northwest Cross-Dressers convention took a tour that day. Tons of men dressed as women (some with their wives in tow) were on the ferries over and back, and all over town. Quite a show, that trip.

Today we experienced a burial at sea. It was raining out, so we were inside the entire time and couldn't see what might have been going on. But once we were out of the harbor and into the Straight of Juan de Fuca, they stopped and had the ceremony before heading on to Canada.

Once we got over, I oriented my parents at the visitor's center. After that, since they wanted to see stuff that I already had seen - we decided to meet back up at 7pm to catch the ferry back to Port Angeles.

I started by walking around and seeing what had changed since my last visit in 2000. Hard to tell, really, but I decided to try some beer places (2000 visit was pre-beer rating) that I'd not visited. First, I stopped by the gift shop at the Vancouver Island Brewery. I've never tried their stuff, and I didn't get a chance this time either. I did, however, buy a pack of beer trivia playing cards.

Next I walked (and walked) until I reached Spinnakers Spirit Merchants. I was looking for any interesting beers and also some farigoule (thyme flavored liquor), on the off chance they had it (which they didn't).

For lunch, I stopped at Spinnakers Brewpub. I tried several beers before having a nice mushroom soup and smoked fish platter. Then I tried some more beers. These included Doc Hadfield's Pale Ale, Dunkelweizen, Hefeweizen, Honey Pale Ale, Iceberg Pale Ale, IPA, Jameson's Scottish Ale, Mitchells ESB, and Titanic Stout.

After that meal, I was ready for another walk. So, I headed back along the harbor until I crossed back over into the downtown area. My next stop took me to Swans Buckerfield Brewery at the Swan Hotel. A beer sampler included Appleton Brown Ale, Buckerfield's Bitter, Extra IPA, Pandora Pale Ale, Raspberry Ale, and Swans Oatmeal Stout.

The rain had stopped and the sun was now out - time for more strolling. Next, I wandered over for a single pint of River Rock Bitter at the Canoe Brewpub. While there, I asked about getting some good Thai food, and was directed to Baan Thai on Blanshard Street. It was a nice little walk up there, and by the time I reached the restaurant, it was dinner time. Good stuff! My head was sweaty by the time I'd finished, always a good sign in spicy eating!

I did some more meandering through town, now too thoroughly stuffed for more beer (travesty!). I did stop at a smoke shop and pick up a Cuban cigar for the boat ride back (tradition for me). I then met my parents and caught the ferry back to Port Angeles.

I capped off the day with a Deschutes Obsidian Stout.

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