We got an invitation to join some friends of ours for a picnic on the beach last weekend. Actually, the invitation said “Jericho Beach/Spanish Banks”.
If you park in Spanish Banks, Jericho Beach can be a long way off. In fact, we parked (got a ride there with Matt and Oana, who we had invited to join us) and started walking, calling periodically by cell phone to try and locate our other friends. “We’re near…let’s see…a red and white Canadian Flag Umbrella”, they said. (Matt and I agreed that she might as well have said “We’re near a blade of grass”) About an hour later, we reached the right picnic blanket, which was indeed at the edge of the Spanish Banks. I guess I’ve learned that if you take a short bus ride or drive to Jericho Beach (which is just a little beyond Kitsilano Beach), you can walk along beach-front for what appears to be a couple of miles. It never seems to end! I got a little sunburned, but not too badly.
For the picnic, I brought patÃ© and cheese I had picked up at Granville Island, as well as fruit, some bread and crackers. Pam brought olives as well as some stuffed grape leaves. Matt and Oana stopped at Meinhardt’s (a very nice high-end food store not too far from us) and brought other good food. I guess the only thing we were missing was Champagne (actually, in this heat, alcohol would have dehydrated us, not to mention carrying the bottles and keeping them cold!) Later we played Bocci ball, and Pam and I briefly dipped our toes in the Pacific (which was still pretty chilly). The beach was crowded, but as someone commented, everybody in these multitudes ‘got along’; No one tried to sell us anything or bother us, few people smoked, and there seemed to be enough room for the thousands there on a warm and sunny summer afternoon of a holiday weekend. I think we’ll make another visit to the beach some time before the season is over, but I have to admit, I feel like I’ve seen more sand and surf here then anywhere else I’ve lived.
Tomorrow we’re going on another summer outing. This time it will be some berry-picking to the south of us (not that far south, because we’ll be staying on the Canadian side of the border) in Steveston.