Valentine's Day: Loving February in Tofino
by Samatha Fyleris, Tofino
Well, we've surpassed that obstacle called January and have "shoveled" the last dump of snow with our baking sheets and dustpans. We're a little cold, often wet, and tired of hearing how Sutton Pass is slippery, slushy, or snowy. Just when we could all use a little love during this home stretch of winter, Valentine's Day turns up right on time with that opportunity to show our good side, or the summer that lives in our heart under all the layers protecting it from sideways rain and storms and winds. Now, we've all been taught, and many would say we've been programmed, to believe that our soundest romantic investments lie in boxes of chocolate, diamonds, and red roses--and those are fine options that I, for one, would never ever turn down --but we didn't up and move to Tofino because we love convention, did we? Try one of these approaches to creative romance by shopping and acting locally:
Don't we all want a work of art without having to break the bank or thin out that stack under the mattress? Sol Maya creates handblown glass pieces shaped like hearts and starfish from his intimate atelier, and no two pieces are identical. They start at as little as $30, and he'll even inscribe your gift for posterity --just look for his glasswork-adorned cedar cabin in the Live to Surf lot behind Beaches.
Time is a luxury we tend to enjoy here in Tofino, and it's the perfect match for absorbing oneself in a great book during these quiet times. Stop by Wildside Booksellers, pick up one of their carefully-selected works, and write a little note of your own inside the cover. Wrap it in a big, red bow, and voila, that's one thoughtful gift.
We're quite fortunate to be situated right next to a National Park--and it's full of great walks that won't leave you too breathless to talk about your feelings, the future of your relationship, babies, kittens, and anything remotely warm or fuzzy. Just slip on those sexy rainpants, and walk down Schooner Cove trail together as you listen to the drippity drip through the forest canopy. Once you're down at the beach, pull out a surprise from Chocolate Tofino from your insulating polar fleece and enjoy the bliss of a few handmade goodies together--the finale to this moment stars you as the romantic hero (or heroine) who sacrifices the last piece of chocolate for your beloved to enjoy.
So far, these suggestions have been relatively unisex, and this last one caters more to one gender than the other, based on purely anecdotal behavioral research (or chats over martinis, whatever you want to call it...) Why not give her the ultimate gift--something she's always wanted: public acknowledgement of your relationship, (Wow!) We all know how to achieve the most effective advertising campaign in Tofino: Use those message boards at the co-op, Common Loaf, Tofitian, and everywhere else! Post your love for her (and all of us) to see, right next to "roommate wanted" and "shared rides to Nanaimo".
Now, that's love in Tuff City.
Samantha likes Pina Coladas, getting caught in the rain, and the feel of the ocean and the taste of champagne.
Tofino guide to Valentine's Day: Alternatives to the traditional valentine's gifts and activities in Tofino.