|Sea Birds Cottage in Victoria|
|the perfect room for a lady traveller|
One of the aspects of solo travel that I enjoy most is spontaneity. Travel partners often have different expectations. I am content to wander without purpose, to pause at a seaside bench to read a chapter of my book and watch dogs play. I enjoy eating at the neighbourhood restaurant whatever it might be. On this trip, it was The Beagle Pub in Cook Street Village.
|lunch at Vis-à-Vis in Oak Bay|
Since I have been yearning for La Belle France, I decided to celebrate Bastille Day in Victoria. I checked that L'Alliance Française had no celebrations. Pas de tout! So I planned an itinerary for myself. Déjeuner of moules with a glass of rosé at Vis-à-Vis restaurant in Oak Bay and some French themed browsing in the neighbourhood. Malheureusement, there is a shortage of kitchen staff right now so the French bistro is only serving an English pub menu. The most Gallic item on the menu was a garden salad with tuna which I ordered in French for fun. Déçue, I thought of Bastille Days that I had spent in Saint-Malo and in Nice. Fireworks, crowds, the sea! I telephoned a travelling friend from those days and we revisited our trips of yore. She thinks that I look like the French country ladies that we met in some of the villages in the Auvergne.
|a little shopping in Fairfield and Oak Bay|
I really don't need to shop at all. But there are small purchases that delight. My friend, Leslie, the Hostess of the Humble Bungalow, often shops in neighbourhood vintage stores. I visited Kay's Corner and I saw a street sign. Mais voilà! It wasn't just any street sign. My mother had told me about going to Victoria 75+ years ago to visit her grandmother's cousin. Her grandmother's maiden name was Colvin. I could not resist.
At French Vanilla, in Oak Bay, I spied a pair of cushion covers with an avian print. They will brighten my bedroom in the winter. Along with an edition of My French Country Home magazine...All to ease the yearning.
|My bedroom is getting more and more French.|
I'm definitely in one of those moods of shameless francophile longing. My reading this week will be The Selected Stories of Mavis Gallant. What better way to recapture Paris Days?