Einstein was dead-on when he came up with the Theory of Relativity. Every single thing seems to be relative to everything else, especially on North Island. For example, if you think it rains a lot in Port Hardy in the winter, spend a few weeks in Zeballos. Zeballos, on the other hand has relatively mild temperatures in winter compared to Woss. A few millimetres of rain in Alert Bay means a foot of snow on Mt. Cain, etc.,etc. No surprises in these comparisons.
Compared to the rest of Canada, North Island has relatively cool summers. Weather-wise, I am convinced that this is the best place in the world to be in the summer. With no scorching heat to contend with, we have moderate days to enjoy the great outdoors and cool nights to do whatever you do at night. However, there is only one drawback to the cool nights syndrome: if youre a gardener its a real challenge to grow a tomato or any of the other veggies that like heat.
Having knocked around this neck of the woods for about 33 years now, there is one place that consistently surprises me when I go there in the summer, This is where you can grow, not only tomatoes but bananas, if you like. Last September, when we had a friend from Bavaria visiting, we did the grand tour of North Island, covering as many of our attractions as we could, including each town or village. She loved them all! Most of them were near the ocean and the daytime temperatures were on the cool side indeed. On the day we went to Port Alice the sun was on our shoulders and we were happy, but as we ascended to sea level, compared to the other towns, it was as if we had entered another world. It was afternoon when we got there and the temperature was hovering around thirty degrees Celsius!
Once again it was imperative that we do the famous walk along the ocean with all of its incredibly stunning views. What caught my eye this time were the palmettos that the people of Port Alice had planted. Ive seen them in other spots on North Island but, beautiful as they are, they always look a bit out of place. Somehow, they seem to fit in Port Alice! I had been in Palm Springs not long before and had practiced sketching these sword-like palms, so when I did this painting it went quite smoothly. Port Alice Tropical Paradise!