travel

Summer 2018 Vacation Roadtrip to the PNW: Victoria B.C. and Oregon (Part Two)

Summer 2018 Vacation Roadtrip to the PNW: Victoria B.C. and Oregon (Part Two)

This post is Part Two about our 2018 summer vacation road trip adventure to the Pacific Northwest and Canada. You can read Part One here.

I hadn’t been to Victoria since I was a kid. Andrew had never been at all. Part of the reason we wanted to head north of the border was to have the excuse to ride on the ferry. The other was to go to Butchart Gardens. I’ve heard it is a breathtaking tourist attraction and I wanted to go see if for myself.

When you want to take your car to Victoria by ferry, there is only one option: take a vehicle passenger ferry that leaves out of Port Angeles, WA. Thankfully there are several trips made per day. Accessibility on a vehicle ferry is tricky because of the way they load the cars. They pack them in so tightly there is no room to let down the van ramp. We hadn’t made arrangements prior, so on the way over we had stay in our van and ride over in the belly of the boat. It wasn’t the most ideal, but the trip was only like 90 minutes, and we were just thankful to be headed on our way. (Going home we were able to load our van first so we could exit it before other cars got parked in around us. So we were able to scoot upstairs via the exterior ramp to the passenger/viewing levels.)

Summer 2018 Vacation Roadtrip to the PNW: Heading North to Washington State (Part one)

Summer 2018 Vacation Roadtrip to the PNW: Heading North to Washington State (Part one)

It had been about six years since Drew and I had taken a proper road trip to the Pacific Northwest. My family lives in Washington State, and he has a sister who lives in Portland. Every time we make the trek we always make time to see both. But because we had more time for this vacation we wanted to add something new into the mix: head even further north to Canada!

In our planning phase we were initially torn between going to Vancouver or Victoria. Drew thought it might be easier just to drive north into Vancouver. But I really wanted to us to experience the ferry, and I wanted to revisit Victoria. I had been there a couple times as a kid, and I wanted to go back and share that with Drew. Additionally one other place we knew we wanted to visit, that was new to the both of us, was Butchart Gardens. I have several family members who have gone there who said it was breathtaking, and sure enough, it lived up to the hype. But more on that in a minute.

Getting Help for My Fears About Flying

Getting Help for My Fears About Flying

I started the process of facing my fear of flying weeks ago with small steps by simply Googling "fear of flying." Online I found resources that answered some of my questions about the mechanics and safety of flight. I even looked at some YouTube videos of passengers experiencing moderate to heavy turbulence during flight. One of the best realizations I made in my cursory online search for help is that I am not alone in my fear. This was a great comfort and relief and indeed, this helped me feel less afraid over the course of the next few weeks. But when I went to actually book our plane tickets, that familiar paralyzing feeling-- tightness in my chest and a sinking in my stomach-- returned with as strong intensity as ever before.