Veep – season 1

I tried. I failed.

Could not get into Veep even though it would seem to be perfect for me.

I simply don’t care about ANY of the characters. If there was only one NORMAL person, it might have worked.

And the overuse of profanity turns me off.

A wise man once told me: “Profanity is part of a good vocabulary”.

Veep ain’t it.

Click PLAY or watch a season 1 trailer on YouTube.

Game of Thrones (season 6)

Excellent. George R.R. Martin should put away the draft of his next book and simply fill in details around the TV series.

The Starks are some of my favourite characters. They feature very prominently in this season.

Arya training with the Faceless Men is one of the most interesting subplots.

And Jon Snow? … I believe he was killed.:-)

Though too violent for me, I was pleased that major things actually HAPPENED this season. It wasn’t all set-up. Winter is here. Daenerys sets sail to Westeros with her companions, armies and dragons. Cersei is now the new Queen of Westeros.

Click PLAY or watch it on YouTube.

cycle hiking Gulf & San Juan Islands

7 islands. 10 days on the bike. Perhaps 1000km in the saddle.

I tented for free every night aside my rest day in Port Townsend.

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I picked up my new bike at MEC in North Vancouver. Took the train to the ferry at Tsawwassen.

First up was Galiano Island. Then over to Pender. And on to Mayne.

BC Ferries Discovery Pass gives a discount on routes not connecting major cities.

I rode excellent dedicated bike trails from Swartz Bay to the terminal in Victoria Harbour. The Black Ball Ferry got me to Port Angeles.

My toughest day was riding P.A. to Port Townsend. There is supposed to be a route, but it’s very confusing.

Cycle trip 1

I took a much enjoyed rest day in P.T. Then caught the short ferry over to Whidbey. The next island is connected by bridge – Fidalgo.

From Antecortes I sailed to Orcas and then San Juan.

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my first cycle touring trip

The ferry Friday Harbor to Sidney BC departs only once a day in the morning.  Many times ferry schedules determine your days.

Once back to Sidney CANADA, I cycled to Swartz Bay and rode the big ferry back to Tsawwassen.

Some say you cannot ride out of Tsawwassen because bikes are not allowed in the tunnel. Just in case I put my bike on the front of a bus.

A local on that same bus recommended we ride together downtown from the River Rock Casino. That’s not bad. You spend a lot of time on a street called Ontario.

Cycle trip 2

The best hiking was on Orcas. The best riding perhaps Galiano and Whidbey.

I’d love to go back to Orcas too for mountain biking.

It’s easier to carry gear by bike than on your back. But hills are murder. I’ll definitely lighten the load next time.

full hiking pack in addition to panniers
full hiking pack in addition to panniers

I’m planning a future short loop from Whidbey to the mainland and back to Port Townsend by road. Perhaps in winter when traffic is lighter. And – of course – I’ve many of the Canadian Gulf Islands yet to explore.:-)

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The GOOD reason I bought a 4th bike.

I bought a hybrid bike for touring May 2016. It’s in Calgary. I’ll be doing some Rocky mountain biking in August.

July 2016 I bought a second identical bike to be stored in Parksville, BC at my parent’s place. (I’ll now have a mountain bike and a hybrid in each city.)

I got the second on sale for $550 as it’s now last year’s model. It would have cost me well over $100 to ship a bike Calgary to Parksville. And another $100+ to ship it back. THAT’s the good reason. It’s less expensive for me to own two bikes than to ship one back and forth.

I’ll be cycling a lot both out of Calgary and Parksville on the two bikes.

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However … MEC bungled my order for the $550 last-year’s-model. Instead I had to buy this year’s model now $775. AND I needed to accessorize twice. Quite costly.

adding water bottle and pump
adding water bottle and pump

 

BC Ferries Experience™ Card

bcf-experiencecard-2015The BC Ferries Experience™ Card is an electronic swipe card that can be loaded with money and used to pay for ferry travel on participating routes.

Participating routes are all but the BIG trips from Vancouver to Vancouver Island.

As is so typical of government programs, the actual benefits are confusing. And not explained well, not even in the FAQs.

But I can confirm fares are significantly reduced using this card island to island. And my bike is free.:-)

You must put a minimum of C$65 on the card to start. There’s no expiry.