John and Marian had made arrangements for us to take the ferry to Galiano Island and spend the day at the cottage of Michael Robson’s daughter, Sally. So, after breakfast at the hotel we headed off for the ferry terminal at Tsawwassen.
Since the ferries are very busy on the weekends, John had made reservations for the four vehicles we were taking to Galiano Island. It was not long before the announcement was made for the drivers and passengers to return to their vehicles in preparation for loading. Loading the ferry was fast and efficient and before long we were sailing away from the mainland terminal. It is interesting to note on the map above that shortly after leaving the dock we sailed into US waters for part of the journey to Galiano Island.
The map above shows the ferry terminal at Sturdies Bay as well as a number of other spots, such as Bellhouse Provincial Park, we visited on the Island.
The first photo shows the ferry terminal at Sturdies Bay on Galiano Island. With Michael’s VW in the lead, we forged ahead – and got lost. Luckily there are not a lot of roads on Galiano Island and it is only a short distance to Sally’s cottage so we got straightened around quickly and arrived at her cottage.
The cottage has an excellent view out over the strait. There are several Arbutus trees with their attractive red trunks and branches along the shore. The many planters of flowers on the deck made it an attractive place to sit, relax and enjoy the scenery in the company of friends.
While many folks sat around the deck and visited, some of us went to explore the shoreline. Len Wiebe seemed to enjoy throwing a stick for the dog. Cathy and Joan explored some of the tidal pools and found a large variety of interesting creatures.
Karen seemed content to soak up the sun’s rays while others visited on the deck. In the afternoon, we went on a drive around the island. One of our first stops was at Bellhouse Provincial Park.
Bellhouse Provincial Park is at the south-eastern end of Galiano Island and there is only a narrow strait of water separating Galiano Island and Mayne Island. However, the main ferry route between Tsawwassen (Vancouver) and Schwartz Bay (Victoria) passes through this strait and so there is a need for a lighthouse to help guide the ferries through the narrow strait.
After leaving Bellhouse Park we headed for “The Bluffs” following Michael’s VW. We missed the turn and had to backtrack a bit. However, the view was worth it. It provided a great background for photos of the direct descendants of Johann Hooge and Gertrude Toews and of their spouses.
The Bluffs provided another view of the strait between Galiano and Mayne Islands. A short drive brought us to the Galiano Island Craft Fair where the were a wide variety of arts and crafts for sale.
There were stands selling flowers and plants, knitted goods and pottery.
After leaving the Craft Fair, we stopped at the Ixchel Craft Shop. It sells a wide variety of both local and international crafts, clothing and gifts.
When we got back to the cottage there was a hummingbird visiting the feeder on the deck.
In the afternoon a bald eagle landed on a tree near the cabin. Sally and her friend Eileen from Victoria had cooked a delicious lunch and supper for us. Eventually through, the time came to say goodby to Sally and her cottage on Galiano Island.
It had been a wonderful day on Galiano and we all were a bit sad as we boarded the ferry and headed back to the mainland.
When we all arrived back at the YWCA Hotel, it was time for some goodbys because some of the participants were flying home Saturday evening and would not attend the breakfast at John and Cathy’s on Sunday morning. All the participants agreed that it had been a great reunion thanks to the work of John and Marian. Florence and Otto Driedger volunteered to organize the next reunion for the summer of 2015 in Regina, Saskatchewan.