Victoria is hot and cool

And I'm trying to believe
In things that I don't know
The turning of the world
The color of your soul

I've been in a poetic mood all day - I was thinking as I cringed at the giant blister on the side of one of my toes about this lyric - that the color of my soul is purple. A rich and warm color, of royalty and bruises, a mix of warm and cool.

Last night and this morning I finished the initial edits on my wedding photos from last month, and after my morning editing I took a glorious shower with borrowed honey shampoo and made scrambled eggs from free range chickens that were orange instead of a sickly yellow color. The eggs were lovely. My hostess explained to me the bussing system to get downtown, so I hopped a bus and got off beside a Shopper's Drug Mart when I realized I had no hand cream and my hands were dry and crackly... After that I stopped at Chapters, chiefly to find their washroom, and ended up capturing a photograph that I couldn't have planned out, but that perfectly matches another photo I took previously.

I proceeded to shop in Downtown Victoria, take in the waterfront and two of the other local attractions, and generally wander about enjoying myself with camera in hand and life on autopilot.

Physical things I ended up with:
  • blisters
  • hundreds of photographs
  • a tiny shell that has huge oceanic-sound magnification skillz
  • a box-less crank music box that plays the Pink Panther theme song. Best thing ever.
  • A unique and perfect Christmas gift for a friend
  • An original Lego figure Spider-Man from a geek store (because it caught my eye, it's rare, and was just too cool to leave there)
Today also marked my first time in a red telephone booth. So special! I wish you could have seen my face when I rounded the corner and saw it, literally sitting there in a shaft of light. I totally should have called someone from it but I didn't think about it at the time. Totally took lots of nifty pics of it and a couple of self-portraits and wished vehemently I hadn't been travelling alone because it was so cool and I was SO bubbly about it and my great mood was wasted on silent walls and strangers who were not amused.

The two local attractions I saw today were the Bug Zoo and Miniature World. At the former I actually took several stunning photographs of nifty bugs (especially leaf bugs) that made me very happy, though I didn't get to hold any cool living things because the place was stuffed to the gills with kids and I had to give them all dibs. Miniature World was way cooler - some of the dioramas were impossibly detailed and I know I could go through there 2-3 more times and not be bored as long as I kept picking different focus points. Worth seeing, would see again with friends to make them better.

There were tons of performers on the docks - several human statues, a juggler, a man playing romantic music on a piano (it captured me and I sat down and listened for awhile - he played with heart), banjo players, harmonica players, and more. Vibrant and interesting. Lots of market-type shops, caricaturists, and nifty food. I intended to buy lemonade from a stand shaped like a lemon, but after a brief conversation with the lady in front of us, who was in a great mood, she bought my lemonade for me, and I was so surprised and pleased. Then I caved and bought myself a belgian waffle from the vendor there, too - it had carmel and sugar embedded in it. So crunchy and sweet and good.

I totally loved Fisherman's Wharf and the harbour in general - actually got out in the tiny little ferry boats on the way to and from the Empress Hotel pier. It was a wonderful time. The man driving the ferry had camera lust for my D300 and opened a window so I could shoot unfettered by plexiglass.

As is my wont, I went further than the average tourist at Fisherman's Wharf and actually walked out to where the boats were used and smelled like fish. There was a ship called the Enterprise. Betcha that was for geek cred. And there were lots of great things to photograph, a tire covered in seaweed and junk on the actually used ships...

I have a bunch of closeup photos of the seals that hung out by the docks to get fed fish by tourists. Big, fat, lazy seals who lay on their backs in the water several feet away from me. That was a pretty cool thing to see and beats only whale watching from afar and was totally free.

After the seals at Fisherman's Wharf I headed back to downtown for more not-exactly-aimless wandering. I entered every store I thought looked cool and every toy store I saw. It was great.

There was a Christmas store downtown (only in a tourist town, eh?), so I took the opportunity for having Christmas in July. My goodness. Some of you may know that I collect nutcrackers? Well, if you're at all familiar with Nutcracker collecting, you'll know that there's one very famous German company called Steinbach who makes the coolest Nutcracker characters ever, most of which are limited edition... Well this store had HUNDREDS of them, the really super expensive ones ($300+) too. There was an Amelia Earhart nutcracker, a Jester nutcracker, a Moses with the tablets nutcracker, and the one I wished so hard I could have - the Queen of Hearts from Alice. I wanted her so badly, but I didn't buy anything there. All the things I really wanted were over my entire monthly budget, sadly. Someday, someday.

I got really tired towards the end of the afternoon and shops were starting to close. I got a toasted sandwich from a hole in the wall called the Sandwich Corner (recommended!) toured back down through Chinatown, went into the tiny little alleyway of shops and took a cool detail shot of a dead weed in a window ledge which sounds lame but was really quite pretty.

Took the bus to my hosts' place... Found out I have a terrible sunburn and iced it, then my host was good enough to walk over to Shoppers to pick up some aloe After-Sun lotion for me since I am the primary color of red all over my back and shoulders. It doesn't hurt much but I could rent myself out as a furnace. Took a walk after this with my hostess to a great little Chinese food place nearby and took an even longer walk afterwards talking and checking out the Victorian style houses in the richer area of town.

This part of the trip has had me in my element, enjoying good company and good sightseeing. Tomorrow I will be taking it much easier, as I rather wore myself out today with six solid hours of touring. I think tomorrow I will stick around here for my hosts' son's birthday party and shoot it for them, and then likely walk over to Government House Gardens, which is rather nearby. I will probably take Sunday morning to go see the other major park that everyone loves, and then I'm on my way home...

Today was a totally fantastic day of great awesomeness. No regrets. Except perhaps not thinking to wear sunscreen when out on water at noon.
  • Current Mood: thoughtful thoughtful
  • Current Music: the sounds of Victoria
Oh man, what a delicious exciting day! :D I can't wait to see some photos of it! I'm sorry you got sunburned though! You have to be careful about that! I think my leg is almost finished peeling from the burn I got on the canoe trip.