Just Another Day for the World's Luckiest Children

So, today a pod of about fifteen porpoises came swimming and playing in front of our boat.

We initially saw them jumping off the side of the boat. Then we realized they were converging from all sides, and racing to catch up with each other. They leapt, they splashed, they raced, and they kept turning sideways to look at all the kooky creatures hanging off the front of the boat, frantically waving at them. The kids squealed and screamed and giggled and exclaimed, as did the adults. (Even so, Iz never once let go of Fairest, her most recent Gail Carson Levine book.)

Here are the girls looking at the dolphins:


We went shrimping and crabbing and fishing today, too. Sometimes we did not catch creatures we were hoping to catch. Sometimes we caught biology lessons instead:

India and the Sun Star

But shrimp is still on tonight's menu. Especially if we draw the luck of the manager of Echo Bay resort, whose latest shrimp pot excursion yielded four hundred of Those Who Make My Bisque:

Transparent Prawn

(I are holding it in front of the sun so you can see its BRAAAAAINS.)

We're still mostly doing a lot of this between our visits to various islands, bays, and coves:


Yesterday we went to Sullivan Bay on North Broughton Island. Every last house is on floats; there is nary a structure on land except a few water tanks. People there keep helicopters on their roofs, and float planes and yachts moored outside their front doors:


Earlier we went to Alert Bay on Comorant Island. Iz got to try poutine, we got to see some astounding art at the Namgis Recreation Centre and U'mista Cultural Centre, and we saw the world's tallest totem pole. We also got lost on an island the size of your thumb, but it was worth the wander to see the art adorning the exterior of so many homes on the island, and the the enormous murals covering the fronts of the local school and longhouse.

Carving on front of U'mista Centre

Base of world's tallest totem pole (173 feet) and Longhouse


Kicking myself for not verifying whether the building above is Alert Bay Elementary or the T'lisala'gilakw School. Kids in this area often do their schooling by correspondence in the uppermost grades.

At the moment we are in Echo Bay, but we're leaving in the morning for Blind Channel. All these small cove communities seem to have free and open wifi, which has been very cool, if not predictable. No cell coverage, though -- I spoke to Seymour for less than sixty seconds today; just enough time for him to reassure me that the horrible dream I had about Leelo had not had any repercussions in the real world.

We are all having the very best time ever. It has been emphasized to me that the girls deserve this, they need to have regular vacations, real family vacations without their brother. I still wish my son and husband could be here. It feels as though we're masquerading as a divorced family, really -- everyone keeps asking where my husband is. I doubt that my partner and I will ever get to break in this wonderful bed in our stateroom. Not together, anyhow.

But I am focusing much less on the bitter, and have almost completely succumbed to the sweet. This trip has been a treat and a delight, even if it is taking place in an alternate reality.


  1. Those porpoises are soooo cool! I wonder if porpoise mommies say, "be careful, you are going to land on your brother's head!" You vacay is awesome!
    Like you, we give up things to keep our little family going. My hubby and I no longer sleep in the same bed, someone needs to keep an eye on the boy, between his seizures and feeding pump and he is the lucky one.

  2. Anonymous9:55 AM

    It seems like you are having a fantastic time. Pics are beautiful, and your girls look happy. You ALL needed a vacation:)
    Have fun!

  3. just amazing. thanks so much for sharing. I showed the porpoises to Alfredo and told him that Mali was there too. He wanted to be there with her, too (and me too, actually!!)
    So glad you are having a great time. So nice of Seymor to insist for you to go.

  4. Someday you and your husband will have a vacation together (it just may take awhile) with the kids. But for the meantime enjoy your time with your daughters! I am envious of you with the beautiful surroundings!

  5. Sign Leelo up for sleepaway camp. Really. Next summer he'll definitely be old enough for it. And he'll love it - swimming, 1:1 attention, lots of structured activities. And your girls can have a vacation with Mommy and Daddy. Everyone wins. Really.

  6. Wicked cool! Those porposies look like Phelps!

  7. Seconded on sleepaway camp.

    I went shrimping when I was 12 or so. I headed shrimp. Then, I didn't even think about it. Now, I don't think I could.

  8. too lovely----have just been thinking about how Charlie swimming reminds me of those porpoises! thanks for sharing your vacation!

  9. Super photos. Certainly sounds delighful!


Respectful disagreement encouraged.