For the second time in three weeks I was on the Island; not in Tofino but the little town of Sooke, for my friend Nathan’s wedding. It was a very nice ceremony, nothing fancy, with Sooke Harbour as a gorgeous backdrop. Which became a grey and rainy backdrop the following day, so we really lucked out.
Five of us stayed in a lovely bed & breakfast for the weekend. The scenery was beautiful, the amenities spotless, the breakfasts yummy beyond description. The only irritant was one of the owners, who turned out to be a hardcore evangelical Christian. I only found this out the evening after Nathan’s wedding, when we’d all gone back to the B&B to relax, and he struck up a conversation with Jon, one of our friends who I knew was also a devout Xian (but, to his credit, had never preached to me). I was upstairs, trying to lose myself in Stephen Baxter’s excellent Exultant but I couldn’t tune out the harsh dogma, talk of “church-planting” and other bizarre jargon. Finally I couldn’t take any more, and went for a walk. I headed down the Galloping Goose trail, got bored by the lack of scenery, so I decided to explore a trail following Ayum Creek down to the water. That was a lot more interesting, and washed away the unpleasant taste of dogmatism. Plus, it gave me some very nice pictures.
Things got sour again the next morning as we were heading out. Sandra, an elementary school teacher and very politically active, got into an argument with the aforementioned Xian about the upcoming strike vote and teacher’s demands. He was absolutely opposed to the strike action (and, it seemed, pretty much any social activism), self-righteously accused the teachers of being greedy, and other equally insulting arguments. Sandra held her own but was getting visibly upset by the guy’s assholish attitude, so I stepped in. Partly out of chivalry, partly because I agreed with Sandra’s position, and partly because I enjoy a good argument every now and then. But it’s a good thing we were on our way out.
To be fair: we didn’t see much of him until our last morning, and his wife was extremely nice. Still, there’s no way I’m staying there again.)