TEA-hee-hee! takes Victoria, BC
9:00 AM: Who needs a teapot-sized Aston Martin? Being a stowaway is riveting! Have successfully smuggled self (1) into The Girl’s luggage and (2) onto ferry bound for Victoria, home of The Empress Hotel and Earth’s most influential Afternoon Tea.
Plan to recruit elite Canadian teapots for key positions in my Delicious Plan starts now. I offer an attractive benefits package. It includes a free gym membership, absolutely no health insurance, and WORLD DOMINATION.
9:04 AM: AAAAAAAAAAAAA my ears bleed! Tea-vil laughter, coupled with motion of the boat, has triggered car alarm of highly sensitive BMW parked next to The Girl’s vehicle. Pangs of longing for teapot-sized Aston Martin. Perhaps I will sneak upstairs.
10:05 AM: Fresh sea air courses through my spout! A gentleman sits alone on a bench in the covered portion of the front deck. He plays a Bach partita on the mandolin. The music reverberates off the boat’s metal hull. Children scamper back and forth and point to the passing islands in wonder and stuff their faces with french fries. Other passengers move slowly, testing conditions on the deck, deciding, at last, that Flock of Seagulls Hair For the Rest of the Day is a small price to pay for a few moments in the salt and the sun and the wind. Melody lilts. Boat lilts. We dance.
10:05 AM plus 15 seconds: Have remembered am SUPERVILLAIN WHO HAS NOT THE TIME FOR POETRY. Especially with so much coffee being consumed on this ferry. To the snack bar!
10:07 AM: Unmitigated disaster. Unable to turn off all coffee makers on ferry without blowing cover. What’s more, discovered residents are not going straight to The Empress because they are staying outside of Victoria in Sooke. Patience. Courage.
2:00 PM: NO OF COURSE YOU DON’T NEED TO DRIVE THE CAR TO VICTORIA RIGHT NOW. Why would you make a beeline for the APEX OF TEA CIVILIZATION when you can stay in Sooke Harbour and eat a salad made completely of flowers?
Oh no no, please don’t DRIVE THE CAR TO VICTORIA RIGHT NOW. Take a long, leisurely walk along Whiffen Spit even though the fog prevents you from seeing past the end of your nose! How delightful. TAKE YOUR TIME.
3:00 PM: Fog has lifted!
10:00 PM: Bah! Girl and traveling companion have retired for the night, and nary a word re: when they will be Victoria-bound. No matter. Will meditate upon the peculiar piece of stained-glass art that separates the W.C. from the sleeping area in The Girl’s hotel room. When the restroom light is on, the fish eye glows red. Soon, my devious, aquatic friend. Soooon.
9:00 AM: Excellent tea selection during vegetarian brunch at Rebar Modern Food. However, attempts to recruit pot of jasmine green tea for Delicious Plan Part #342 unsuccessful. Fool! Part #342 is one of the best parts!
Drowned sorrows in housemade ketchup. Came up for air to steal bites of grilled buttermilk biscuit sandwich.
2:34 PM: For some godforsaken reason, have been forced to mingle with dirty hipsters and browse organic cotton thingamajigs at Sitka—a lifestyle store that sells outdoorsy stuff for surfers and skaters and other people who engage in leisurely, non-world-dominating activities. And yet, I rather reluctantly admit that I enjoy stealing bites of a simple ploughman’s lunch, served by the store’s sustainable lifestyle café on their sustainable lifestyle sidewalk patio.
That salty sea air. Do I hear a mandolin? Briefly consider complete change of Delicious Plan. Will instead become dirty hipster surfing teapot.
4:30 PM: AT LONG LAST.
The Girl called ahead to arrange a vegetarian Afternoon Tea service. Be still my cold, cast-iron heart—are those mini-chocolate teapots filled with earl grey marscarpone? And I see so very many potential recruits.
Good teapots of The Empress: Take me to your leader!
Right after I pilfer a scoop of blueberries and cream.
To be continued ….