Friday, 21 May 2010


Inspired by our fabulous Greek meal last night, today we went “island hopping” around the San Juan Islands in the Strait of Georgia between WA State and Canada. We caught a ferry from Anacortes to Orcas Island, where we cycled around the whole of the West side of the island, before catching another ferry late afternoon to San Juan Island, our destination for tonight. Orcas was beautiful, and we met some cool people as we were waiting for the (late) ferry from Orcas Island to San Juan Island– hello to Doug at the Orcas Hotel, and the couple from Edinburgh with your cousin, and friend from Bellingham –sorry, we didn’t get your names before we left for the ferry.

Arriving in San Juan, we felt that all was good with the world. But that was before we had checked into our hotel. Our hotel for the night was literally minutes from the ferry. Pulling up to the hotel, we were greeted in the very tastefully decorated lobby by the German manageress who kicked off by telling us that we would not be able to take our bikes to our room, and would have to lock them outside. When we gently explained our trip and therefore how important the bikes are to us and that we don’t have locks with us as we always take the bikes to our room, she looked at us as if we were stupid and asked sharply why on earth we weren’t carrying locks? We explained how essential it is for us to minimise weight (unnecessarily carrying very heavy locks) when attempting to cycle 14,000 miles up and down 8,000ft mountains …duh… but this still had no impact. Jeez… had she not heard of German technical efficiency, or vorsprung durch technik? We believe she wasn’t really German, because she continued to look equally unimpressed and instead showed us to the side alley outside where we were invited to lean the bikes against the dustbins…nice.

We were then shown to our beautifully appointed but tiny room on the 3rd floor with… a shared bathroom on the 2nd floor. OK, so perhaps we have become a bit “princessy” on our trip, but for a room that is over $100, no matter how stylish it might be, it is inconceivable that we would choose to stay in a place with a shared bathroom. When we think back to the joys of Ahoskie NC, Andrews SC and other such gems, even they had their own bathrooms…

Unfortunately, the hotel had no other rooms available, but did have a room with a bath at its sister motel down the road. Traipsing back down the 3 flights with all our bags, and back on the bikes, we found that our German lovely had, of course, called ahead to tell the staff at the motel that we should under no circumstances be allowed to take the bikes into the room, and they greeted us with this message as we stepped into reception. By now, that we were not only island hopping, and hotel hopping, but were hopping mad.

In the end, we found that our room had a balcony (derr), so Trusty & Steed are taking their rightful place out there as we type. But that wasn’t the end of things, oh no, not for a minute. We won’t bore on about the other issues we have had, save to say that the reason that the blog will not be posted tonight is that the internet in our overpriced room doesn’t work, and the reception staff, presumably inspired by the directness of management, suggested it was our fault for having an Aluminium Mac Air. Don’t ask….

Anyway, giving credit where it’s due, reception did give us a good recommendation for dinner, and we ate fantastically well. So, we’ll pipe down and turn in for the evening. Whale watching tomorrow!

Us x

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