em & ck : THE BIG TRIP!!
After arriving back at John's crazy but great house and meeting Clare's cousins Robin and Rory we got some sleep ready for exploring. The next day we got the bus downtown, having to ask a random man which way to go to get there. We headed along Wharf street to the tourist information centre to pick up a map of the area and also to book our whale watching trip. Trust us to get the "manager" who seemed to have to ask her employees how to do everything! We walked around the harbour and saw loads of stalls selling bracelets and necklaces, carvings and doing portraits. We then made our way to Thunderbird Park to view yet more totem poles, but no stacey island to be seen! Spent the afternoon just walking around and watching the street performers before heading back for a relaxing evening. The next day we caught the bus downtown and found the Springtide Whale Watching building and receieved our boarding passes for the boat. We sat there for a while thinking we were the only people going on the boat, when a load of spanish people with annoying little kids walked in!! Then when we arrived at the boat there were yet more people already there! Oh well!! The boat made it's way slowly out of the harbour, which we found out is actually an airport! At the front of the boat we could really feel the wind messing up our hair and Em even had tears in her eyes!! Then we saw a FIN! Off in the distance there were a couple of killer whales swimming along, however Em couldn't see a thing...Clare then reminded her to put her glasses on, maybe that will help a bit! We got closer and were able to watch them which was a spectacular experience. The way back was alot more chopping and involved holding on, we were in a large boat and not the "zodiac" where you are strapped in wearing orange suits! Emma didn't want to go on one of the those...kill joy! As soon as we stepped off to dry land and said goodbye to Marina our Marine Biologist, we headed straight to Milestones for lunch. We spent the rest of the evening wandering around the waterfront area, when we heard gospel singing in the distance, with clapping and all, so we made our way towards it, only when we arrived they finished! TYPICAL! We watched the sunset behind the boats and then headed back to the house. Where we watched a film with Robin called Pricilla, about Australian drag queens! The next day we made waffles for breakfast (Mums can you buy us one for when we get home!) and then packed our stuff up ready to leave, it wasn't a long enough trip!! After saying our goodbyes John gave us a lift to the ferry terminal where we boarded the Victoria Clipper bound for Seattle. Waiting in the customs line, we soon learned that we should have filled in green forms, so we stepped out of line to fill them in, which meant we were more or less last on to the ferry! We got interegated by the customs lady about who we were staying with and for how long and whether they were relatives or friends. When we boarded the clipper we found there were no more seats left together, we wandered aimlessly around when a couple called over to us saying there were two seats next to them. We set off towards Seattle, when there was an announcement for any medically trained staff to go to the back of the ferry! I swear drama follows us! We were then informed we had a medical emergency onboard and would be making stop nearby. After the heart attack victim was taken off the boat we headed back off towards Seattle only to hear another announcement that there was something wrong with the engine and we would have to return to the port we were just in. By this time we had got to know the couple next to us Mr and Mrs Love, Randy and Marilyn, a very very nice couple from Tacoma. They adopted us as their daughters whilst onboard, teaching us a dice game and making the trip very interesting! They also bought us cookies, gave us the dice and another pack of cards, as well as some money!! They were awesome people. What should have been a 2 1/2 hour trip turned into a 5 hour one, but it was a great trip and we really enjoyed it. The Loves were kind enough to make sure we were met by Dave at the terminal and make sure we got on our way ok. Thankyou Randy and Marilyn - we look forward to a greek feast one day! Us xx