We’re cruisers and we’re used to being on the move. We go from place to place and meet different people along the way, and we’re forever saying “hello” and “goodbye”. We end up running into a surprisingly high percentage of people again, sometimes years later, and we love that. Winter is the one time of the year that we tend to sit still somewhere and because of that we tend to “grow some roots”. The more often we return to the same place, the deeper those roots can go. After spending 6 very happy winters in the Keys we had some very tough roots to cut, but the anticipation of new adventures in the Pacific Northwest took a little of the sting out of saying goodbye to dear friends and favorite places.
We’ve only been in Victoria for one winter, in a part of the country where we barely know anyone, but we found that it was hard to cut our fresh roots. For one thing, Victoria is a “sticky place” – it’s a place that’s just nice with lots to do and everything is convenient… so it’s easy to not-leave. But the harder thing is that we’re starting to make some friends out here – some boating, some knitting, and reconnecting with some from our previous lives.
The winter started out pretty lonely – there isn’t the kind of community of liveaboards on the docks that we’re used to on the east coast, and we barely even saw any neighbors much less got them to talk. Thankfully, I am a knitter, and I think it’s a universal truth that knitters like to gather and knit. I found the local knitting meet-up group and started attending the Tuesday and Friday evening knit nights. The first night I met another newcomer who also happened to be a boater and a liveaboard – how lucky is that?! And we hit it off and became great friends, often meeting for coffee and knitting on our own. After a while we got together for dinners with our spouses and it was great fun. Later on I got to know some of the other knitters and made particular friends with two more. Jim often came to Friday night knitting for a little while since we met at a cafe with good food and killer desserts. That solved the problem of what to feed Jim while I was off knitting, and he got to meet some of the gals and enjoy some conversation (and eat dessert – it’s all about the sweets). It’s much harder for guys to make friends, I think.
We headed out into the Strait of Juan de Fuca and had a nice view of the Olympic Mountains to the south.
…and we had a few curious surf scoters come by and check us out.