COURTENAY, British Columbia, Canada – That damn independence thing we did back in 1776 has had long-lasting repercussions, I think you’ll agree. Like, we gained a democracy, but we lost a monarchy.
Back then, we denounced King George III, and while he might have been a dickhead (tyrannical, boorish and batshit crazy), he was our dickhead. He was King. How cool is that?
Old Georgie 3 ruled for almost 60 years, during which time he never beheaded any of his wives, to the best of our knowledge.
Among George’s other notable accomplishments was freeing his American subjects to mess things up on their own.
This week, we Road Warriors stumble out beyond the borders of the US of A, and we have lots to answer for. For instance, we have a presidential candidate who keeps saying, “Make America grate again.” I think we Americans already grate on plenty enough people the world over.
As we planned our international itinerary, we sought to find the closest foreign country with ties to a monarchy. Canada, according to the crack Grey Goatee Research Confederation, has been right there all along.
And yes, you loyalists of Grey Goatee Nation, there will be golf, the global currency. Speaking of currency, our American dollars are worth more than Canadian dollars, even with the picture of Elizabeth II – a real live queen – on the face of the Canadian $20 bill.
All the better to pay for our rounds at three golf courses on and just off the eastern coast of Vancouver Island, which – again according to the GG research squad – is the largest Pacific island east of New Zealand but only the 11th largest island in Canada. Man, that Canada must be a big country.
Vancouver Island might as well be uninhabited for all the Roadies know about it, but we hear there are pockets of civilization – like golf courses. We aim to find ‘em.
The Queen’s Island Tour
Day One: Crown Isle Resort Course, Courtenay, B.C.
After a ferry ride (gorgeous) from Port Angeles, Wash., to cosmopolitan, old-world Victoria, the British Columbia provincial capital, and a night’s stay at a motel (modest, but thoroughly Roadie-appropriate) in Courtenay, B.C., the Road Warriors take an uncharacteristic step up in class at the Crown Isle Resort. Here, you can smoke cigars in the cognac bar in the hotel, apres-golf, and as for the golf, it’s right out the front door, stumbling distance.
Day Two: Quadra Island Golf Club, Quathiaski Cove, B.C.
Here we take another ferry ride off the big island to a rugged little island and a nine-hole golf course that looks, sight unseen, to be more than enough challenge for anybody (slope 134, course rating 72.2). The Roadies don’t know what those numbers mean, so we go, undeterred and foolishly unaware, into the fray.
Day Three: Storey Creek Golf Club, Campbell River, B.C.
This Les Furber layout is among the most decorated courses in western Canada. The prolific Furber is the crown prince of golf design in Canada, and we can expect to be in, under and stuck in the lush forest of trees that line the course. We Roadies could be similarly stymied on a links course with no trees at all, so again, we don’t know what we’re in for.
All three golf courses lie in a part of the world that is ever so near Grey Goatee Global HQ yet all but completely unknown to the Road Warriors. That’s at least half the fun for us commoners on the Queen’s island.