Four words: chocolate lavender ice cream. I might as well use one: heaven. The goodness from Pelindra Lavender Farm was the highlight of my trip to San Juan Island. AND THAT’S JUST THE BEGINNING FOLKS
I walked off the inter-island ferry after standing outside by the rail, soaking in one of the most gorgeous rides on public transportation I have ever been on. (Hard to beat islands all around and miles of sea and sky...) I walked less than five minutes to the Farmer’s Market I had read about online. It was great…but could be walked through, slowly, in less than ten minutes. I got a virgin pomegranate mint mojito and walked along, when Tracy texted me asking if I was on the island yet. (She was staying there with her parents for the next few days). She came to get me and we walked around the town, in and out of boutiques and bookstores. We stopped at Serendipity, a charming and well-known used-book store on the island. It was jam packed with books and absolutely lovely. We might have knocked over a couple bookshelves though…
Next door to Serendipity was “The Market Chef” –a wonderful sandwich and deli place I had seen online. We went in and I was getting coffee when Tracy came in from a phone conversation and announced that her parents would be picking us up for a picnic. We got sandwiches and chips for everyone and were off to the other side of the island with her 80 year old parents. I couldn’t believe it. We first went to the Pelindra Lavender Farm, where you could walk right up to their lavender for free and breathe in the soothing aroma. The entire field was blazing purple. Our picnic, however, was in Lime Kiln, a park area with a light house known as an ideal spot to whale watch. Orcas, aka Shamu from SeaWorld to me, abound in this area and even come close to the shore looking for salmon. I didn’t see any, but that didn’t take away from the fact that I was eating at a picnic table looking out onto British Colombia and the vast ocean. On our way back, we picked up the chocolate Lavender ice cream from the farm and ate it in the car. I felt so incredibly spoiled and could not, still cannot, believe my day.
I was so humbled by Tracy and her parents. I had known her at Our Lady of the Rock for barely three days, and already her family was hosting me around the island and making sure I got to know it well. I easily feel like I have known Tracy for a long time. Perhaps it was our walk the day she came to OLR that set the tone. She had lost her glasses and was going out to find them. I decided to help and we ended up walking around sunset, having a deep conversation about life. Here we were days later, showing each other different candles in quaint boutiques, meandering through book shelves, feeling like kids at camp. Women at least two decades apart. How friendships, relationships and moments with other human beings like this occur, I can only wonder and marvel and thank God. But as I sat in the backseat of her parents car, eating chocolate lavender ice cream after a long, full day of beauty, all I could do was smile.