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  • Writer's pictureRuth Mcbride

Shampoo, and rinse...!!!

And that was Newman’s day...not mine just mine! I left Richard this morning with the plan for the day to make sure Newman got a shampoo and rinse. Richard and Jim (the neighbour) had been wanting to wash both of their RV’s, but we needed a sunny day, so today was the day. And today was also the day Benny from Viper Fuels in Chermainus was coming to fill Newman up with more propane, so why not wash the rigs while waiting for Benny to arrive?


Newman is so very special he gets expensive RV/Marine soap to clean him, diluted with water, in a bucket. The RV scrubbing brush is on an extended pole, to be able to reach all of the high spots on Newman. Richard scrubbed both Newman and Jim’s Newmar Bay Star RV next door, while Jim manned the hose to rinse off both of the RVs.


Jim rinsing Newman.


Operation clean two RV’s!


Newman with the awning out. We never keep it out here in Fanny Bay, because it is usually too windy. We are looking forward to when we can go RVing somewhere that we can sit outside on the picnic table, with the awning out, and eat outdoors. Summertime RV life! And it would be nice to be able to light the firewood in the fire pit too and sit outside, but it is NOT that kind of weather!


Newman still has a fabulous view, despite not being able to sit outside him or enjoy the picnic table.


On my first official day of retirement (as in I didn’t have to go to work after Christmas and New Year’s break), I had to set an alarm today! Mon dieu! What is wrong with me? I had to get to strength training in Courtenay before my hair appointment, so off I went with my ”take out” breakfast prepared for me by Richard, so I could there on time.



After working out with my trainer for an hour, I had some time to kill before my hair appointment. It was a sunny day and I knew of this park that Richard and I had not yet stopped at in Courtenay, which was quite near the hair salon, so I decided to have a walk about and see what I could see, while killing some time.




I found myself at Simms Millennium Park a 9- acre park along the Courtenay River. The park was dedicated on July 1st, 2000 and had originally been the been the business district of the City, when in the mid-1880’s William Lewis had built the Courtenay Hotel. In 1935, the Cottonwood Motel was built for “motoring“ visitors at the entrance of what is now the Simms Millennium Park. The Cottonwood Motel as was common in that time period, had stand-alone cottages which had a bedroom, kitchenette and sitting area, to provide a home-away from home atmosphere.


The Park is named after the Simms Family who owned the majority of the current park property. The Simms men were “old world English”, honourable gentlemen who could always be depended on. Charles Simms, a prominent watchmaker, jeweller and local businessman, operated a high-traffic wharf on the site and served as Mayor of Courtenay for 9 years. He had entered politics because of his great concern for the quality of the local drinking water. In his native England, he had seen the high mortality rate caused by unsafe water. In 1922 Courtenay began to pipe water from the Browns River. His son Harry Simms also was elected Mayor of the City and another son, Tom, also served as Alderman.


Simms Millennium Park is valued for its role played in the defence of the West Coast of Vancouver Island and in training for the D-Day landings on the beaches in Europe during WWII. From 1942 to 1944, the Courtenay River Slough was used to moor the several assault craft used in Combined Operations training and was only one of two sites of its kind in Canada. Currently used as a government dock, the Courtenay Slough reflects the presence of the federal government in the City.



Harbour at Simms Millennium Park.



Flanked on two sides by water, Simms Millennium Park’s scientific value lies in its situation in a riparian zone. The grouping of mature trees, shrubbery, grasses and water around the park provide an immensely important habitat to a variety of wildlife, ranging from numerous species of salmon that spawn in the area, to birds and small mammals.


Rotary Centennial Pavilion in Simms Park. The hillside around the pavilion is purposefully built up to provide the opportunity to sit and listen to outdoor concerts on warm summer evenings. Last summer the ‘Simms Summer Concert Series’, like most things in 2020, was cancelled due to Covid. I hope they bring the concerts back another year! What a nice, small intimate venue and one I would have enjoyed playing at, when I was playing trombone in a concert band. It might be something I have to get back to, once Covid is over for good!


I could not find the significance of this building anywhere, but it sits in Simms Millennium Park and I liked the moss growing on the roof. It shows how much rain falls here and how moss grows anywhere and everywhere!



Even on the sidewalks! There is moss everywhere!



Walking from Simms Millennium Park, under the 5th Street Bridge, to Lewis Park, in Courtenay. I found it very curious that under this main bridge, someone looks like they have their recycling bin and some sort of trash receptacle, neatly stored under the bridge!


The Cona Hostel. A guest of the hostel in September 2019 decided to set the place on fire. I guess then Covid hit and that’s probably why it has not been rebuilt, and instead it is for sale. While it got great reviews on Trip Advisor, and the location is right next to downtown Courtenay, I’m not sure it would have been my first choice of accommodations in Courtenay.


5th Street bridge. Downtown Courtenay is within walking distance immediately to the right of the Courtenay River.


Walking under the 5th Street Bridge, I did not realize I was now in a different park. Lewis Park is directly across the road from the Simms Millennium Park in downtown Courtenay. I didn’t take any shots of Lewis Park because it was really under water. We’ll save Lewis Park for another day, as it also has a very interesting history.


After killing an hour downtown Courtenay I went to meet Christie, my new hair stylist at “Extreme Ends” in downtown Courtenay. After answering the standard Covid protocol questions, Christie gave me a disposable mask and she worked her magic! From Christie, I learned about a few great trails we should hike. Christie, who has lived in Courtenay and Cumberland since 1996 joined the military after graduating from Royal Roads University but she was originally from Niagara Falls. After finishing her military term, she decided to become a hair stylist and come back to the Island for the lifestyle. It is always nice to get recommendations for local restaurants and I asked Christie what she would recommend. These were her top for recommendations we will have to try: Locals, Atlas Cafe, Avenue Bistro and Yiamas Greek. We will try these spot for takeout lunches when we are back in Courtenay.



New hair for the newly retired look! No fuss, no muss. I even said, please don’t curl it, since I won’t be bothering with that in my new life!


After I left the hair salon I was hungry and decided on the first official day of retirement I would treat myself! Its not often I stop for fast food on my own, but why not celebrate with a small treat on Day 1 of retirement?


A small DQ chocolate dipped cone!


I decided to stop at the Post Office in Union Bay. Our mail has still not arrived since December 7th! While waiting to go into the Post Office, didn’t I bump into our neighbour Jim who was waiting in line in front of me! It certainly is a small world.


I arrived home to find that someone was parked in Jerry’s parking spot.



St. Steve had come for a visit to try and fix the hinges on Newman’s door. Unfortunately the original hinges won’t work anymore, so St. Steve is going to get a piano hinge and hopefully replace the two original hinges. It was nice to see him again and we know he will be back!


The broken door on Newman will be propped up in place, until we get the new hinge.


I noticed that a local fisherman was removing his oyster traps from his boat and loading them onto his truck. I’m not sure why and didn’t want to ask either, as they appeared very busy, but he definitely needed a lot of assistance from the winch to get all of the traps loaded onto his truck.


Tomorrow we are supposed to golf at Qualicum Beach Memorial Golf Club, but the course was closed today because of wet conditions and we are supposed to have 100% chance of rain tomorrow, with 70-90km/hr winds overnight and into tomorrow. I can bet with 100% certainty we won‘t be golfing tomorrow! All we hope and pray is that Newman’s roof handles this upcoming rain and wind and that nothing else goes wrong with winds that strong!




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ronporter38
Jan 05, 2021

Looks like a nice blue sky day, you beat us we‘re looking for some of those next week !!

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