Awoke feeling virtually human – even managed a normal sort of breakfast (ie coffee rather than Alka Seltzer.) Chatted a good deal with Bill during the morning, about England, about theatre, and took Bill + Jeanne’s picture in the garden. While I was packing the car, Bill came out and apologised for not spending more time with us, but I assured him I had been made more than welcome. At 12 or thereabouts, we said goodbye.
Just a quick stop for provisions, and then on the road again. We drove due north on the motorway for quite a way, and then turned off east to go and take a look at Mt Baker, according to the signs, so assumed we must be able to see it – tho’ nothing around was very impressive, when all of a sudden we rounded a corner and there it was, utterly breath-taking. It was completely white, and totally dominating. We drove as close to it as we could, but eventually the road turned into a rough track, and tho’ we went up it a short way, it soon became too rough. Driving away from the mountain, the car missed quite a bit, and then stalled. We were worried to say the least, but it seemed to clear itself when I hit the gas pedal, so it may well have been mountain dust in the carburettor. Arrived at the border soon after, and had no trouble at all really, except we weren’t supposed to carry fruit across, so had to sit in the lobby and eat a couple of nectarines we’d just bought. Were driving into Vancouver when happened to see a sign for Surrey – the address we had for Liz. Drove over there, and after a great deal of messing about finally found the place. Brent’s parents lived there – Liz + Brent had only looked after it for them, but in any case L + B had gone to Vancouver Island for a few days. Brent’s parents gave us a meal and a bed for the night, which was very kind, + we went to a nearby beach for a beautiful evening swim – again, the day had been a scorcher.
Some explanations necessary. Liz and Brent were friends from England, Liz a schoolfriend of Val’s brother who had met Brent, a Canadian, on an archaeological dig, and had moved to Canada.