New Year 2011

I switched blog sites, so I'm moving this post over.

I'm starting off 2011 by trying to improve my internet literacy. First off, my New Year's greetings.
I enjoyed 2010 and I hope you did too. My basics stayed the same – I’m enjoying my Victoria condo and I’m still a Sr. Program Geoscientist with the provincial government. My work unit is part of a new ministry (Natural Resource Operations) but the basics of the work, primarily cleaning up orphaned historic mine sites, haven’t changed. It’s been a great joy to have my post-bike accident dentistry behind me. My very last treatment was way back in January. A big highlight of the year were the Winter Olympics in Vancouver – I didn’t see any of the sporting events live, but I spent a few days enjoying other Olympic celebrations and soaking up the fantastic vibe the city had going.
I took a break from Outrigger canoe this past year, but got my time in on the water in my sea kayak. Along with numerous day trips, I did a few weekend trips on the Gulf Islands with friends and one guided trip in Clayoquot Sound, out of Tofino. That trip was extra special because my mom came along - we were part of a great group with six other people, including our two guides. We were fortunate to have six days of dry and warm weather, although there were some big winds near the end of the trip. I worked on my surf kayaking skills a little more on this trip and mom did great on the surf landings and launches.
After many years without, I took an international trip this summer. I spent three weeks in Europe, first visiting the Cinque Terre in north-western Italy, then spending a week with my parents on their canal boat in the east of France, and finishing with a few days in Paris. Although getting to the Cinque Terre required a lot of train travel from Paris, it was a fantastic side trip. And my folks have a great thing going with their canal boat. I highly recommend this type of travel. The canals show a different and often older part of the country side, the travel speed is very relaxed, and ‘boat people’ are the same everywhere – friendly, interesting, and helpful if needed. I was able to meet up with friends who were also visiting Paris, making that portion of the trip special as well.
I don’t yet have any big plans to report for 2011. I’ll continue to enjoy the good life here in Victoria. There is so much to do on Vancouver Island – I hope the coming year brings many more kayak trips, ferry-free visits to family and friends up and down the island, and general playing outside. I had some great company this year and really enjoyed sharing my home with them. I do plan to visit the mainland to see friends in Vancouver, and hopefully I’ll even make it further south this year to visit friends south of the border.
All the best to you and yours in 2011. Please drop me a line, especially if you’re going to be in the neighbourhood! Yours always,
(Photos: In front of the Olympic flame; Paddling in Colquitz Creek near Victoria; Reviewing the chart with mom at my favourite Flores Island campsite; Very sweaty on my Cinque Terre hike; Steering the canal boat; Paris boat tour)