Island Hopping: San Juan (Hop 1)

Trip Start Jun 22, 2010
Trip End Sep 21, 2010

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Where I stayed
San Juan State Park

Flag of United States  , Washington
Friday, July 2, 2010

Heading back up north from Victoria, I cycled to Sidney to catch the faerie (!!) to Friday Harbour. Way hay hay, US Immigration the easy way! We just chatted, she glanced at my passport and then told me the places I should visit in Washington (WA). Sweet!

I met a guy on the boat who told me that Friday Harbour (main town of San Juan) was referred to as 'Sin City'. I was expecting Vegas. I got Cabot Cove ('Murder, She Wrote' but without the murder or J Fletcher). Another ten miles across to the other side of the island and I arrived in the State Park.

The great things about the State Parks is they have hiker/biker sites specifically for the likes of me. And even on a particularly busy weekend like this was, they won't turn you away. It's genius.

The downside of the parks - no showers, no hot water.

So I rolled in to this magic camp area that was forest backing onto a fantastic sea view. I'm going to run out of superlatives in this entry coz everything was fantastic. I literally dumped the bike and walked towards the view to see Orca whales swimming by! Like a scene from Free Willy! It was pretty amazing - I must have sat for half an hour watching them go by - blowing water, breaching. Amayonaising.

And after dinner this woman wandered over to me to say they had too much 'pie' and would I help them finish it?!? I then I woke seriously, it was a good day.

Having done so few miles the days before, it wasn't like I needed the rest but I hung out an extra day anyway as it was so beautiful.

On the second day, I met this guy - Len an ex-fireman from Philadelphia who could talk for the whole US. Anyway, he said he'd met an Irish lady earlier in the day and told her to keep an eye out for me. Sods law, I bumped into her in the great meeting place - the loo! Lovely Dublin woman who'd been living in Seattle for the last 30 years. She was camping with her family and around 3 other families. She introduced to every single person:

She: "This is Mags from Cork! And guest what, she's....'
(nudge in my arm)
Me: "...cycling to San Francisco"

About 20 times. In fairness, the adults were enthusiastic but the teenagers looked at me like I needed my head examined.

There was NO escaping the sing-song that followed. I thank God I escaped without having to dust down my part piece (which, for anyone who doesn't know is to run away really fast). Tunes belted out included a very solemn 'Amazing Grace' and the classic, and my all-times favouite 'horse with no name'!! Finally, as we (they) were halfway through 'Hallelujah' the Park Ranger turned up and apologised for having to shut us down because it was so late.

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