There are places on this planet that seem to nurture us simply by being there, and I find Vancouver Island to be one of them. Even from on board the ferry, one gets the sense of moving into a different place of beauty and serenity.
|Roxy enjoying a walk in the forest.
On the journey home, we paused at Cathedral Grove - a truly magical place. Just steps from the main road, ancient, moss shrouded, old-growth trees tower above some of the biggest, most lush trilliums I've ever seen. Birds flitted about, including delightful Winter Wrens shouting their spring songs from tree stump podiums, and a gorgeous Varied Thrush that paused briefly on a branch. Kestrels called from the tree-tops and an unseen tree frog added an amphibian song. This place is soothing to the soul.
|A massive trillium sprouting from the base of a giant tree
|A Varied Thrush on a mossy branch
|Can you spot the tiny Winter Wren?
Before heading to the ferry terminal, we made a diversion to the town of Crofton to call on another friend. We took the dogs for a stroll on the sea-walk at Crofton Bay where I was hoping I'd see one of my favourite bird species, the Pacific Oyster Catcher. What I did see was this plump otter happily munching on a large fish on the beach just a stone's throw from where we stood. A beautiful pair of Mergansers rested nearby, also observing the feasting otter.
|Seafood lunch in Crofton Bay
|A silk painting of mine featuring an Oyster Catcher
Back on the mainland I made one last stop. In the trees growing against some bluffs near the ferry terminal is a heron rookery. The trees were dotted with the shapes of Great Blue Herons flapping to and fro or standing guard over their nests. Spending a few moments observing this natural wonder was a fitting conclusion to my trip.
And now I'm back in my studio, feeling refreshed, renewed and ready for the tasks at hand.