It’s day two in Gonzales Bay, just east of Victoria Harbour.
It’s lovely here! Nicer even than Fleming Beach, from which I was evicted on Tuesday – and even nicer now that it’s not pouring rain anymore. I arrived on Wednesday afternoon to grey skies, and it rained all Thursday, so the sun is welcome – I had the sails up this morning for an hour or so to let them dry out. Mildew isn’t something I’m really interested in dealing with.
One nice thing that happened: about an hour after I anchored, an older woman with long white hair rowed out to say hello, and to offer me a shower, a dinner and the use of a bicycle, should I need one. What a far cry from the surly stares of the Esquimalt fishermen, or the studied disinterest of the older sailors at the naval base! She offered her back yard as a place to tie my dinghy, instead of the public beach, and told me to feel free to come and go though her property. I took her up on the latter, and rowed my bicycle to shore in the pouring rain last night to go have birthday drinks with Oakley and Amanda. Making my way home much later on was a bit of a trial to say the least, especially in the pitch dark with a head full of Jack Daniels – when I finally found the place, the tide had gone waaaaay out, and my dinghy was stranded about twenty feet up on the steep, slippery rocks. I managed to get the dinghy, my bicycle and myself down to the waterline without falling – at least, as far as I remember. Good thing I remembered my flashlight!
The bay is shallow – only ten or fifteen feet or so where I’m anchored – and I can see the bottom. It’s really nice being able to see the bottom, especially after so much time in the murky brownish waters of False Creek. There are large shoals in the bay, and tonnes of seabirds – the only downside is that there’s not really any shelter from the open ocean. I get to rock around on the wake of every whale-watching tourboat that goes past – but between the gentle, constant rocking, the sounds of the seabirds and the waves lapping at the rocky shores nearby, it feels very much like the east coast here. I can’t see any crabs down there, but I might try dropping the trap later on just to see if I can snag some dinner.
If the sun sticks around, perhaps this weekend I’ll get out the flippers and snorkel and give Tie Fighter’s bottom a good scrub – she’s starting to look pretty scummy down there.
Tonight, a house party. Tomorrow, shopping for Burning Man supplies. Sunday, who knows?