Friday, July 19, 2013

Form Mimics Function

Haiku My Heart
July 18, 2013

Each week, on Friday, many gather and share their life, art, comedy and tragedy under this Haiku My Heart heading. All started over three years ago by my friend Rebecca, a vibrant soul that gives us all a lift in all her beautiful postings.
You can see more Haiku My Heart and find out how to participate at her blog, recuerda mi corazon.

(I can't get the link to work, so here's the blog URL. Please just cut and paste it, I'm a dunce)

Reflected sunset aboard the M.V. Coho, Strait of Juan de Fuca

Travel on water

Seasick behemoth floating

Form mimics function

The amphibious Hippo Bus

If you’ve stopped by recently, you’ve seen that we have been on an adventurous road trip. I wrote about the trip itself in the posting previous to this one entitled Motoring West. One of many highlights of this trip were the three ferry rides we took from Vancouver on the Canadian mainland to Vancouver Island and the British Columbia Provincial Capital, Victoria. From there, we ferried again to the USA across the Strait of Juan de Fuca.

The city of Victoria is a pretty large metropolitan area and in fact, is the 15th largest city in Canada. Being near the sea, there is a lot of tourism and many of the attractions include the water.

We could have driven across the border as we traveled from the East of Vancouver through the mountains of British Columbia, but we chose to use the ferry and have that experience.

Of course we saw a plethora of boats of every shape and size. Kayaks, small aluminum fishing boats, cabin cruisers, Coast Guard vessels, cruise line ships in port, freight haulers, the ferry boats themselves and the many water taxis and novelty watercraft that lured the tourists in for fun, adventure and sightseeing.

One of these boats was called "The Hippo".The photo at the beginning of this post is a stock photo of a "Hippo" from their website. These giant vehicles are amphibious and can move about on land and in the water, yet they are the size of a bus, a very large bus.

We had seen them driving around Victoria as we were looking to park so we could eat at Nautical Nellies, a famous and expensive seafood restaurant in the bustling downtown of Victoria proper that has, as we were told, been voted as the "Best Restaurant in Victoria, BC". By the way, a full restaurant review of Nautical Nellies and a few other great dining establishments we encountered along our journey will be forthcoming in the days ahead. Finding unique coffee shops and places to eat is a passion that both Mrs. Spadoman and I relish to the max.

I didn’t snap any photos of the Hippo Buses we saw that were on dry land, but I did get a couple of shots from the ferry as we were waiting to depart the dock. These behemoths do indeed float!

So, we were relaxing on the rear deck in the sunshine. The weather was pleasant. A lot cooler than the high inland temperatures we had just experienced, so we sat outside, even though many folks sought the coziness of the inside cabin during the ride. Locals, I’d guess.

When I saw the Hippo bus coming towards us, and as I was grabbing the camera out of the case to get ready to take some pictures, I pointed in the direction where I saw the very large bus/boat coming from and exclaimed, rather loudly, to Mrs. Spadoman:

“Look, here comes the Hippo!”

The Hippo on the horizon

As if on cue, a cue that would have been good enough for any Hollywood producer either of us had ever worked for, a woman of portly proportions walked up the metal stairway and stepped onto the sun deck, directly in the path of my gnarled pointing finger!

The Hippo, afloat and underway in the harbor

I put my arm down and quit pointing immediately and got up and walked to the rail to take the pictures. I never looked back to see if the woman saw me pointing “at her” or nearly shouting with enthusiasm what I had said about her size.

I mean, what if this happened to you? You or I walked into a room and someone pointed and called you a hippo? I’m still a large framed man, and although I don’t weigh in at a svelte 270 pounds, (122 kilograms), like I did in 1985, I still have some girth to contend with and would have easily accepted the fact that someone could perceive me as a hippo, or a rhino, or even an elephant! Yet I would never believe in a thousand years that any normal human being, who was a stranger, would call me any of those things to my face! 

Maybe if they knew me well enough to get away with it, but an imbecile in a place as public as the sundeck of a ship that holds 410 cars and 2100 people that has just pulled away from port for the nearly 2 hour journey across the sea!!??

Oh well. Luckily, she didn’t seem to notice, Mrs. Spadoman informs me long after she left the area. But all the while, I was waiting with one eye scanning fore and aft of the ship and keeping plenty of space between myself and the rail for fear of being pushed overboard. Imagine, a Pirate Cap’n, well seasoned such as meself, in fear of his own life on any ship, even if it wasn’t under my command.

Avast Ye Mateys! Thar be large animals aboard. Shiver me timbers. Retreat to starboard and pass the cutlasses and flintlocks. Ye can’t know when trouble will strike.

Next time through Victoria, BC, I’m gonna take a ride on a hippo.

Late edition to this post is this short, 1 minute, 22 second YouTube of the Ferry and the Hippo:

Peace to all


Fallingladies said...

I love your story, had me laughing out loud by the end... I will have to go back and read the post i missed after work, as usual i don't have much time right now. it does look like you had a grand time!

somepinkflowers said...

{{ good morning,
dear traveling haiku*writer,
i bet
you are
The Best Fun
on road trips ... }}

Mel said...

Hahahahaha.....ohmygosh, you are suuuuuccchhhh a lucky fella.
Seriously--over the railing coulda been an option! LOLOL

Ramesh Sood said...

Oh, loved the write...your exprience appears to be beautiful..keep travelling that I seldom get a chance to do..


deb did it said...

boats boats boats
all shapes and sizes
stay afloat

Jean said...

Love it! Poor lady - but maybe she's well aware of the real "Hippo" and knew you weren't speaking of her.

I've been to Vancouver but it was such a quick trip that we never got to see the Island.
My daughter-in-law was also in BC when you were - but much further north visiting her mom on yet another island. I love BC - only been there twice, both brief. And we seriously thought of moving there at one time - or Australia. I wonder what adventures we missed.

Nanka said...

Aye! Aye! Cap'n!!
Excellent narration Spadoman and took me years back to my sailing days with my husband aboard oil tankers, massive ones no doubt but sleek and shapely like a woman!! ;)
The Jack Sparrow role could fit you right!! Smiley!! My favorite!!
I really miss those sailing days and all the fun we had on strange soils with strange people and stranger tongues!! :D
Excellent photography Spadoman!!

We catch th' early evenin' tide 'bout 7 bells to ye Olde Haiku me Heart from across th' seven seas Friday nightfall,whar plenty a fair maiden serve Haiku in spiced rum 'n ale,Yars can sort ye own boat home here ... :D Arrr!! Arrr!! To err is human, to Arrr!! is pirate ;)

Spadoman said...

Oh Nanka... I love the connection you have to the sea.
If you are so inclined, please refer to this post from some time ago which explains the Pirate reference.
Nothing quite as beautiful, daunting and sexy as a female Pirate Queen!
Thank you for stopping by.


Spadoman said...

Andrea... Thanks for paying my blog a visit. Glad you got a chuckle from the story.


Pinkness.. Thanks for stopping by. Always good to see your name and parenthesis flying around.


Mel.. Yes, I did get lucky. If the ship hadn't been loud and sorta crowded, I'd have been toast!


Ramesh.. Thank you for the visit and the compliment, you are very kind.


Deb... You do it so well. Thanks for coming by.


Jeannie.. Thanks for the visit. I fell in love with BC and i am planning another trip out that way as soon as I can make it, maybe on the motorcycle next time and spending more time in Vancouver, Voctoria and other towns and cities we passed along the way.


Magical Mystical Teacher said...

Thanks for the laugh this morning, Spadoman. It's been a long, hard week in the Four Corners, and I'm longing to get back to my Sonoran Desert hideaway!

Barbs of Loneliness

rebecca said...

you have kicked all the haiku hearts into a morning frenzie of laughter and merriment! you have a way about you captain!

love knowing you and your coffee queen are after high adventure; on the road and on the seas. there's no keeping you down captain of our hearts!

Dawn Elliott said...

Indeed, I think that you and Mrs. Spado should include rides on unique amphibious crafts to your list of fun things to do on the road! Love your predicament of timing, which is!

Kim Mailhot said...

Oh, no ! That is so funny ! But I am sure she didn't hear you. Those ferries are so noisy! Nudge nudge, wink, wink.
We all forgive you, not to worry.

Yes, I think a Hippo ride is a must for your next visit through that port !
Happy Weekend, Man!
Peace to you !

Karen said...

Hip hip hooray, for the hippoboatbus, what a unique watercraft

Spadoman said...

MMT.. Thanks for the visit to my blog. Glad you got a chuckle. Hope we can connect again one of these days.

Rebecca.. You are so kind. Thank you. Always a highlight to have you grace my page. Thanks

Dawn... After all, I was a Pirate Captain in a former life. Makes perfect sense that I get in trouble on the high seas. Thanks for stopping by.

Queen of Hearts... Thanks for coming by Round Circle. Really, what if she did actually here me and see me pointing right at her!!?? I'm so sorry it happened, but maybe it was supposed to.

Karen... I like your alliterative nature! Thanks for visiting my blog today.

Peace to all of you!

Priti Lisa said...

You do live life to the fullest, don't you?
Beautiful photos, Joe.
Fun(ny) story.
Wonderful to see you happy♥♥

Spadoman said...

Lisa... Thanks for stopping by Priti one. I don't know about living life to the fullest, but i can say, I don't have a bucket list, as they say, because I just do stuff as i think of it!


Anonymous said...

I really enjoyed your seafaring post. Lovely photos. Thanks for coming by my blog.

gma said...

Once my sister said "Oh look at the ferries", two gay men looked around...when she saw them she said "I meant boats" (making it worse) Funny thing is she is gay too. LOL Sounds like you are having lots of fun!
I'd ride the hippo.

Nonnie said...

oops! That was rather an "open mouth, insert foot" moment, yes? my eyes would probably be as round as half-dollars in seeing the Hippo bus! rather incredible! thanks for sharing!

Unknown said...

That's hilarious...great description of an embarrassing moment!!

hears to a fabulous weekend!

J C said...

Laughing, Mr. Spadoman. Still laughing!

Lea said...

Oh my! Was that ever timing for you, for her, for the "hippo ferry"! I've never ridden one of those, but will never quite see any type of ferry the same after this! You & Mrs Spadoman were so close! Next time, OK? Much love to all of you!

Anonymous said...

Oh this is hilarious! Thank you for taking us along on this adventure.... and I love your pirate voice! Enjoy the rest of the ride.

Kalyan Panja said...

beautiful captures...lovely words!

Anonymous said...

Oh how I love Victoria! Perfect Haiku!

susan said...

I'm glad you both enjoyed such a wonderful holiday. It was very sweet for me to see the BC ferries again - but there were no Hippos when I lived there. Just as well, I think.