Saturday, March 14, 2009

When Adventures Have Glitches. . .

You just have to grin and bear it! Or at least bear it. I'll admit, I wasn't grinning too much during my ordeal last Saturday that turned what should have been a 3-hour trip from Seattle to Victoria into an 8-hour trip!!!

Me and my awesome friend Miranda thought we'd have a nice little relaxing weekend getaway, so we booked tickets on the Victoria Clipper. It sounded so easy. . . catch the 8 am boat from Seattle, read a book for a couple hours, and arrive in Victoria on Vancouver Island by 10:45. Miranda's trip did go that smoothly, because she went on Friday. She was going to spend one day there by herself and I would be joining her on Saturday.

Saturday dawned. . . rainy, windy, and cold. I drove to the ferry terminal through sheets of rain, stood in the long line to check in for the boat, and then found out that because of heavy winds they had canceled the sailing. My choices were. . .

1. Cancel for a full refund, leaving Miranda there all by herself until Sunday
2. Take a bus north over the Canadian border, then take a different ferry to Victoria. The lady said it would add an hour and a half to two hours to the overall trip length.

So I waited for the bus, got on it, and my gosh, it seriously took all day to get there. I don't know what that lady was thinking, because it added five hours to my total trip length! The bus ride alone was three hours, not including the time it took to get everyone off the bus at the border, put our luggage through a scanning device, and be asked lots of ridiculous questions by the border patrol. When we arrived at the ferry terminal at 11:30, the next ferry didn't leave until 1:00. So of course we had to wait around for that, and then the ferry ride was another two hours, with another half an hour in the bus on Vancouver Island until we finally got to Victoria. I didn't get there until almost 4 in the afternoon! I was ready to pull my hair out!

I took this picture from the ferry, going between some of the islands. It was hard to get a good picture through the dirty windows, but it really did look pretty!
Miranda was really glad to see me, and I had exactly 24 hours to relax and have a good time in Victoria. The city was very pretty! Here we are in front of the city's Fairmont Empress Hotel, right on the water. We stayed at a Best Western, but it would be cool to stay at this hotel someday!

Here's some beautiful architecture, mixed in with a Pacific Northwest totem pole. We mostly walked around the harbor and went in lots of shops. It was so fun being with someone who wanted to browse through shops with me, because Stephen never would have gone for that!
Despite my long ordeal, I'm really glad I got to go and I had a great time with Miranda. Thankfully, Sunday was clear and sunny and we had no problem getting home the regular way, on the 3-hour boat. It was nice! Here's the view of the harbor from our boat.

The boat seats reminded me so much of airplane seats, it was kinda funny. It was nice to have some girl time, and now I can add Canada to my list of countries I've traveled to!


  1. oh that sounds like so much fun.. sorry it took so long tho..those things happen to me too.

  2. Wow- I cant believe you had to go through all that when you're so pregnant! I would have been in tears, but it sounds like you had a great attitude!

    We got a great deal through the Clipper vacations last time we went to Victoria and were able to stay at the Empress- it was a lot of fun and a very cool hotel! Victoria's a great trip to take with the little ones, since you don't have to worry about renting cars and carseats and stuff. So a good place to go back to when you guys need a short vacation in the future!

    Glad you had fun!

  3. My mom, aunt, cousin, and I went on the Clipper to Victoria back in 2000 and it was a beautiful place to visit. We enjoyed wandering around through shops and whatnot, and there was a little street fair the weekend we were there, so we ended up coming home with all sorts of crafty things. Thankfully, besides riding over HUGE waves that left me feeling a little green around the gills, our travels to and from went smoothly! What an ORDEAL you endured. HOLY COW!! I'm glad your 24 hours there were worth it after all of that!

  4. The three-hour tour, huh? :) Glad you got to have some girl time!

  5. Hey Kelowna Canada where I am staying is about 5 hours from Seattle...a little north east...

    But we flew into Vancouver...

    And now from you pictures...I think we might go and visit Victoria int he summer!!! :)

    I can't believe your TRIP...what a trouper...especially because you are pregnant!!!

    I'm glad you had a good time least the shopping made it worth it!

  6. OH wow! I bet that was such a good break to get away from home and life! Moms need those little recharges every once in awhile!!! Such awesome picture!!!

  7. The craziest thing to me in all this is that you hadn't been to Canada before! With it being so close to you, I just assumed you'd been there. :o)

  8. Hey Ashley, this is Miranda's siter Megan. It sounds like you had a lot of fun on your trip!! I'm sorry you had some mishaps along the way! :)

  9. Glad you got to enjoy yourself despite the long, long wait to get there.
    Thanks for entering my giveaway. GOod luck on winning!

  10. What a great adventure to add to your memory book. I remember have a wonderful adventure when pregant with my 2nd child. Getting away was fun and relaxing. Glad you got to go!

    Have a beautiful Monday!

  11. great Pictures!! what a neat adventure! you two look so cute!!!!!

  12. Wow! I can't believe that bus time. And you are so brave! I totally would have turned around unless I had Nathan with me!! But it looks gorgeous and I am so glad you had a good time!

  13. I never could have sat on a bus that long when I was pregnant! I'm glad that you had a good time - it looks like the long trip was worth it!

  14. Sorry your plans went skiddywampish. But I'm glad you were able to have a little fun.

    Your tummy is SO cute!

  15. Ashley, I had so much fun! I created an account just so I could comment. :)We will have to make a mommy getaway a yearly thing, at least! Thanks for not bailing on me when the transportation got tough! Hooray for girl time!

  16. Looks like it was worth the long wait! What great photos!

  17. Oh my gosh. I'm glad you finally made it! What a great friend you are!

  18. Aw, it looks like fun, even if getting there was a total nightmare!


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