We have arrived in Mallorca, Jessica and her family came, my parents and Sheila’s mother. It rains only on about 50 days a year here, but after two sunny days we are hitting a few of those days. The kids (and adults) nevertheless enjoy the warm weather and ocean. We also have access to a pool, great to sit at, have a drink and look at our WhatsApp messages.
I came up to Simon Fraser University today to give a guest lecture, beautiful day to be back at my old university. It has grown quite a bit, but the views on a sunny day were still great. Sheila and I met some friends from our student days for dinner on the hill afterwards, and we all enjoyed the fantastic sunset and catching up.
Today I did two walks in the park! In the morning I walked along the trails on Portland Island that I omitted yesterday. We were last on this island in 2004, and I was happy to see that the only change was a new sign telling people to pick up to 6 fruit of a kind in the old orchards (a family of racoons harvesting apples blithely ignored this). In the afternoon I moved over to Russell Island and did another walk in the park (and ate some more apples). The view from the beach is towards Reginald Hill, which I climbed last Saturday. The weather was great, sunny and warm in the afternoon.
Portland Island was given to Princess Margaret when she visited British Columbia in 1958. In 1967 she gave it back and today it is a nice park with a few anchorages, campgrounds and walks. I came into Princess Bay today and hiked around the island. The weather was sunny, but cool and windy.
The sun came out again, but it is still very windy. I came to Saltspring Island today and am anchored in Fulford Harbour now. This is well protected from the Northerly wind, so it was a good place to clean and pack away some of our water toys. The harbour also has a nice dinghy dock, and a great hike up to Reginald Hill. The best: there is a nice restaurant at the ferry terminal to recover from the hike!
The weather is still very unsettled and I came into this totally protected bay today. There are thirteen boats and a floathome in here, more than I have seen in any of my other visits. With the heavy rain showers and strong winds, it really feels like fall and I am starting to pack up the boat for the winter.
I spent the evening yesterday on Ibis, a 35 foot sailboat we owned from 2003 to 2006. Gary, the current owner, runs a successful sailing business on it (blackfishsailing.com) and it was nice to see the boat in such great shape and swap a few stories with Gary and his students. Ibis even features on the training book now.
The night was windy but not as much rain as forecast. Today I went to Rum Island for a walk. We had never been here before. During prohibition this island was used to smuggle rum, but I did not find any.
For the night I came to Sidney Spit, always a favourite. I tied up at the dock, something else we had never done before. The afternoon turned out beautiful and sunny.