Saturday, 18 June 2016

Planning for the Summer Ride

Photo from http://whyweride.com

Due to an interesting development, I have a little time on my hands this summer.....

My father-in-law is taking my wife on a cruise this summer - very nice for her - and that has freed up a bunch of time for me to tour in the summer! Of course, there's visits with the kids and a fishing trip but there is also time to take a longer scooter trip than I usually take. 

The total trip will take about 11 days and I am REALLY looking forward to it. I hopefully haven't planned too many really long days or bitten off more than I can chew.... I would LOVE to read any comments you have on my route as I have never done this before. Anyway, here's the plan:

Day 1 - Maple Ridge to Seaside, Oregon. 525km
I have taken minor highways all the way to Longview before, on my Vespa 250, and that's almost at the Washington/Oregon border. The plan on this day is to blast down the I-5 until Olympia and then cut over to the coastal highway until Seaside. It's not a particularly pretty ride but it will get me there rather quickly. That way I can check into my fancy hotel (with a number '6' in it) and then have a beverage and look at the ocean. I plan to leave around 7am so hopefully that will give me plenty of time to get there.

Day 2 - Seaside to Crescent City, California 642km
This may be a REALLY long day, but I hope that I will be fresh and energetic (as it is the beginning of the trip) and able to handle the time. There's a ton to see so I will have my GoPro camera on for part of the way and have the tunes cranked on my helmet SRC. There's espresso places, cheese factories, lots of viewpoints, kites, more cheese and more viewpoints! I don't intend to stop at every place - that would take forever - but certainly at some to see what I can see. Again, I will start early and I don't know if there's a lot to see at Crescent City (maybe a big crescent wrench?) so I will probably just crash at my hotel when I get there and rest up for the next day.

Day 3 - Crescent City to Mendocino, California 367km
Finally, a shorter day! I actually was originally going to go from Crescent City to San Francisco in one day but realized that I was doing days that were too long and I needed a break so I broke up the day in two. Again, a ton to see including more cheese, viewpoints, redwoods, and a giant totem pole. If I start early on this day - and I don't see why I wouldn't - it will give me some time to explore Mendocino - as well as stop at the occasional place on the way down. 

Day 4 - Mendocino to El Granada, California 281 km
Maybe this will be a lie in day! Not a long trip at all, although going through San Francisco is bound to be nerve-wracking! Happily, there are still lots of things to see on the way (although no cheese factories) and I can actually take it easy. The reason that I'm going to El Granada is that I will be staying with my friend, Mike, who I met in Japan over 30 years ago, and his partner, Shirley. We stayed with them and visited San Fran a few years ago and had a fantastic time. We also stayed with them on St. Martin, in the Caribbean, when they invited us to a time share - and that was also another absolute great time! I had originally planned to stay a bit longer with them but, as I looked at the giant distances I was attempting, I realized I had to add a couple more travel days. Looking forward to seeing them!

Day 5 - El Granada - Visiting!

Day 6 - El Granada to San Luis Obispo, California 363km
This is the only day that I have a bit of a time crunch. On the way down the coast, I have a reservation to stop at Hearst Castle for 3pm. I'm sort of guessing on the time so I will need to leave early enough that I don't miss my reservation but late enough so I won't be sitting outside the castle for 3 hours. Some nice scenery including Carmel and the whole road down through Big Sur sounds wonderful! After visiting the castle, I hope to spend a little time in San Luis Obispo before turning in.

Day 7 San Luis Obispo to Lodi, California 412 km
The route I'm taking takes me away from the soul-sucking Interstate and onto hopefully quieter highways. Again, I originally was going to go all the way to Reno but realized that I was trying to do too much in a day so I split it in two. Cheese, nuts, and a Swedish town await my possible inspection on the way to Lodi, where I can sing, CCR-like, how I am stuck in Lodi again (even though it will be my first time).

Day 8 Lodi to Reno, Nevada 277km
Ok, maybe the real reason I decided to split up the trip was to give myself time to play blackjack at the tables. I am staying in the Eldorado - the same hotel I stayed in when I took a trip while going to UBC back in 1980. Wonder if it looks any different? There's a gold rush town as well as Virginia City to see on the way so there are a couple spots to see. 

Day 9 Reno to Klamath Falls, Oregon 409km
I'm not sure if there's anything to see here. Trees? Lakes? Mountains? I guess I'll find out. Hopefully some good craft beer in Klamath Falls.....

Day 10 Klamath Falls to Yakima, Washington 581km
I used to have an excellent bike rack for my bicycles that fit my old VW Golf. It was called a Yakima - not sure if that was the model or if that was the company that made it. Anyway, it will be interesting to make my way to Yakima. Again, I'm not sure if there is a lot to see as I had a hard time finding any information on the internet. There is some sort of Stonehenge recreation in Biggs so I am thrilled to be seeing that! If anyone can assist me with anymore information for the Day 9, 10 or 11, it would be greatly appreciated!

Day 11 Yakima - Kelowna, BC 512km
The last blast of the trip will take me through the American Okanogon (I think that's how you spell it in the US) which is a bit of an overlap from last summer. Other than than, I guess I'll see some trees, some desert-y land, and some lakes and mountains.

Why Kelowna? Because my eldest lives there, of course! Eventually I will work my way back to Maple Ridge. 

It might be a bit of an ambitious trip but I think I will be ok. I've got hotels/motels booked the whole way and they are all cancellable if things go pear shaped. I'm working on my packing list and my exercise program for when I arrive at each destination right now. I will go into that in another blog entry.

Any suggestions, blogosphere?




Monday, 13 June 2016

Harassment Ride - Glen Valley

Today's route



My friend, Dale, is harassing me.

No, not that kind of harassment!

Since he has bought his motorcycle, he texts me, sometimes several times a day, to go for a ride!

I DO enjoy riding with him, but I do have some semblance of a life outside of my scooter!

Anyway, we went on Sunday for two reasons; one, the rain had stopped and two, he broke down my resistance!

Due to time constraints, Dale couldn't go until 2:30pm and I had to be back by 5pm so we went for a very enjoyable but all too short ride.

First, out to Mission, stopping at Silverdale to fill up with cheap ($1.21 / litre for premium) gas. Then across the river to Abbotsford and then onto enjoyable country roads.

Luckily, Dale was leading because he had a much better idea of which direction the route was. I think the last time I had been on this route was part of a bicycling trip about ten years ago! Or maybe one of the rides on my Vespa LX50!

It is a great ride - not very much traffic - and the two thirds point was Glen Valley Regional Park. In fact, the area is referred to as Glen Valley.

Two fine two wheelers, parked in Glen Valley Park

We stopped there and had to actually take off our jackets as it was quite warm. We met a fella there that had a big 1300cc Yamaha bike and was testing out a magnetic tank bag. The thing looked almost a bit comical because it was so tall that it obscured the gauges when you are riding! The guy was testing it out because his wife and he were heading on a trip that started east to Saskatchewan, then south to Mt. Rushmore and then back to the west coast through the states. Quite the trip!

After our pleasant visit, we headed on back to Langley and then over the Golden Ears bridge and home. I was back for 5pm and parked my scoot, happy to have been harassed sufficiently to go for a ride!


Sunday, 5 June 2016

Scooter Season Begins



I't been such a long time.

Makes me think of one of the bands of my youth, Boston, whose song, Long Time, began with those lyrics.

Life just gets too damned busy and, also,  I find that throughout the non-summer months, I just don't have a ton to write about. Better to say nothing than to babble-blog. But things have been happening over the past year and I will get to them over the next few weeks.

But first, today's ride.

My friend Dale has a Honda CTX 700 - he had a 300, but as soon as I bought my BMW 650, I guess he had to out-cc me!

Anyway, Dale suggested going for a ride today as it was a beautiful summer-like day with summer temperatures and wonderful clear skies.

We met up at Bruce's Market in Maple Ridge and headed east on the Lougheed Highway. We both have nice super high viz green jackets now - I bought mine at the Abbotsford Motorcycle Show a few months ago - and had all of the liners out. It was a bit chilly at 8:30 in the morning but that definitely wouldn't last. After gassing up in Silverdale, we made our way to the Ricky's Restaurant in Mission for a filling breakfast.

I've done all this reading about how you should eat light when going on a longer ride so that you don't get sleepy so I'm not sure what happened when my farmer's sausage skillet arrived at the table. I did leave a fair bit behind but still.... We recalled that the last time we were in this particular restaurant was after cycling to Mission about 7 or 8 years ago....

After breakfast we continued east on the Lougheed Highway (7) until Hope. There were a TON of motorcyclists out there on every sort and type of bike. Other riders in fluorescent green always waved, most others did as well, but some of the leather vest and tiny helmet crowd just ignored us when we gave them the motorcyclist wave. The ride was enjoyable although we hit some super strong wind gusts just before Hope.



From Hope we took the freeway and stopped off at the Hope Slide for a break. The Hope Slide is Canada's largest landslide - ever. It came down in January, 1965.  Two cars and a truck were buried under the slide - 47 million cubic metres (that's a lot!) of rocks killed four people.  Luckily, a Greyhound bus filled with passengers felt an earthquake and turned around just before the slide happened, saving many people.



I remember stopping at the Hope Slide as a kid - it was a lot more recent when I was young, I guess - and I still enjoy taking a look at what mother nature can do. Unfortunately, my photos are more focussed on my friend and our shiny bikes than on the slide!

After our break, we continued down the road on Highway 3 - the Hope-Princeton. This is one of my favourite highways for even driving a car - lots of nature, nice windy roads, good condition, and not packed with vehicles. It's a bit of a slower road - perfect for riding.

While enjoying the road, I must admit that I had my tunes playing in my helmet. When I bought my BMW scooter almost a year ago, I also bought a fancy Schuberth helmet. It came with pre-installed speakers and a mic. Last month, I bought the electronics (called an SRC) so I could connect with my iPhone. While the music certainly isn't blaring away, I can hear it over the wind and road noise - and it makes riding wonderful! I still can hear other vehicles, still am focussed on the road, but a layer of enjoyment has been laid on top of my already bountiful enjoyment!

Our next stop was Manning Park. This is a provincial park that has ski lifts, camping, hiking and a lodge. When we got to the lodge, we took a road on the opposite side of the highway for the 8km climb to Citadel Viewpoint.



The road was one that my wife would hate, what with all the nasty edges, but I enjoyed the great views on the way up. We passed a guy on his bicycle - man, it would be a grind up that hill!




At the top was the viewpoint which was very nice. There was a sign with a bunch of metal arrows that showed you where different mountains were but, unfortunately, I didn't recognize any of the names. By this time it was quite hot and we enjoy the break from being on the hot pavement.

Heading back always seems faster and this trip was no exceptions. We basically retraced our route and it was similar except hotter - my scoot showed a high of 36° C. - in the upper nineties, I believe, in ol' fashioned Fahrenheit. We rode our way back through the same lovely roads until we got to Hope and then gassed up. At the gas station was a mini A&W so I bought s small root beer to supplement my water.

That brings me to another purchase. I had already purchased a small backpack (counts as a second carry on item) when we went to Arizona in March. Last month, I bought a Camelbak bladder and tube to stick in it for riding. Several blogs I have read said that this was a good thing to do. Unfortunately, I only lasted until Mission with the backpack because a) it was hot and b) I had to run the tube under my helmet strap - otherwise it would flap around and be inaccessible. This bothered my face as the tube tended to rub. Luckily I had room under my seat for the back pack and I just grabbed a drink whenever I stopped. I had filled it with ice in the morning and topped up with water. The good news - even at the end of the trip, the water was still cold.

By this time it was way past lunch but neither of us were that hungry. We decided to stop at the Sasquatch Cafe for a beer (one only) and some chicken wings.

Not my photo - and about 40 more bikes.

The Sasquatch Cafe or Inn is in Harrison Mills on Highway 7. We pulled into the rather large parking lot and.... it was full of bikes. Not a single scooter and I don't know if we saw another Japanese bike, either! It was definitely Harley-ville with a few others, such as Nortons. I parked beside a beast of a bike with a tiny helmet emblazoned with several version of the F-word emblazoned all over the helmet. We took off our bright green jackets (no other green jackets were in evidence) and attempted to cooly walk to the cafe.

There we had a beer and their amazing chicken wings. It was a great break and the cold beer was a welcome relief. I wish I had taken some photos there but it was a bit intimidating to be surrounded by the Harley crowd. No problems, though!

After our refreshments, we headed back, diverting onto Dewdney Trunk Road in the east part of Mission. We wended our way home, arriving around 4:00pm. Total mileage, 370 kms.

A great ride - and a great restart to my blog!






Tuesday, 4 August 2015

Cascade Loop Scooter Trip - Day 3



Despite the well crafter beers imbibed the previous night, I did not sleep well. The room and the BnB was upstairs and was hot. There was a small fan but it just did not kick out enough of a breeze to cool me down - maybe if I had suspended it from the ceiling....

I got up, took another shower (using what seemed like someone else's stuff) and then ate my, now warm, mixed fruit container. I did hear some movement in the house but when I came downstairs, I didn't see anything. I lingered by the door, trying to sniff out the breakfast that I would have liked but smelled nothing. I called out a tentative, "Thanks," but heard nothing in return.

Sighing, I left the BnB - or should i just say the Bn, and sorted my recycling as requested by the hosts. I packed my scoot and then managed to rock it off the centre stand, despite it being on a steep hill. I sped off from the street thinking, I would definitely stay in Seattle again, just not here.

One of the things that caught my eye - and had the night before - were the book boxes (Little Free Library) that I saw dotting the neighbourhood. There was even one outside the pub. I think it is a great idea to be able to take a book or donate a book at one of these. Some of them were quite fancy (they can be outside a home or business) and I was impressed that they showed no signs of vandalism.

Once out of the neighbourhood, the next item on the agenda was... coffee.

I stopped at a Starbucks, ordered a large latte, connected to the wifi with my iPad, and relaxed.Ah!


Eventually, I got back on my scooter and headed for the city centre. I parked and bought a parking voucher which just stuck to the front of my scoot. I took a photo of it just in case someone decided to help themselves to some free parking.

After a brief wait, I entered the EMP - Experimental Music Project - museum. I had heard a lot about this facility and was very impressed by what I saw.





The feature exhibit was on the costumes of Star Wars. I do enjoy those characters and am really looking forward to the upcoming movie.




After that, I went to another favourite of mine, the Science Fiction display. Some very cool displays ranging from Mars Attacks to Bladerunner to Dr. Who.


There was a fantasy section where the actual costume from the cowardly lion was on display.



The sort of historical fantasy section had things like the knight hats from Monty Python's The Holy Grail ("You English pigs!") and the Imp's outfit from Game of Thrones.

Then I went to more of the musical exhibits. One of the best is an area where you can try different instruments and either play them on your own or jam with other people in the EMP. I ended up jamming with a couple of teenaged boy scouts on a trip - fun!


There were exhibits on Jimi Hendrix, Nirvana, and some of their contemporaries. There was also this giant tower of guitars situated in the middle area between all of the music type displays.


So much to see! I ended up at the Warner Brothers animation section which brought back lots of fond memories from my childhood.

After almost three hours, I was pretty much done. I left and went around the building to the restaurant connected to the EMP. I had a chicken panini which was actually pretty good and then wandered back to my Beemer.

There was a motorcycling couple from California parking near my scoot. We had a bit of a chat and when I asked them how they got here, they said o the I-5. I was a little surprised they didn't take a more scenic route, but that's when they explained  - they take their motorcycles on their motorhome and then do day trips from their destination!

I left Seattle and managed to find the I-5 without too much trouble. It was a rather uneventful ride on the way home. I did take Chuckanut Drive again, giving myself a bit of a break from the fast traffic of the interstate.

When I got to the border, there was a 40 minute wait but I managed to make it to the little booth without being too cranky, especially after I jumped a bunch of the line going into the duty free for a bottle of kahlua. I arrived  at the booth and the guard was a bit annoying. He seemed to fixate on the fact that I had gone on my own and hadn't met anyone in the US. I explained a few times that I do this sort of thing every summer but he still seemed suspicious. Begrudgingly, he finally let me pass, and I headed home.

It was an excellent trip overall. The BMW performed so well - a dream compared to my Vespa 250 - and I thoroughly enjoyed the ride. I would strongly suggest that if you live in this part of the world (the Northwest of the US or the Lower Mainland of BC) that you check out the Cascade Loop.

Great ride!

Monday, 3 August 2015

Cascade Loop Scooter Trip - Day 2 Part 2


"I was somewhere around Cashmere, on the edge of the desert, when the sugar began to take hold."

My apologies, Hunter. But I did enjoy the Aplets and Cotlets from Cashmere - and then I pressed on. By this time is was very hot - I think the temperature on my Beemer was around 36 or 37° C. 

Next stop was Leavenworth. This was a popular lumber town during the beginning of the 20th Century and was the railway headquarters but from the 1920s on to the 1960s,  the popularity took a definite dive as the railway headquarters moved to Wenatchee. Then, the citizens decided to do something crazy - they decided to make a Bavarian village out of the town. 



Today, everything from the gas station to Starbuck's has a Bavarian theme. It's a fair sized town and it's cool that everyone agreed to get on board. Apparently Winthrop got their idea to be a theme town cam from Leavenworth. 


I loved everything about the town - except the utile public toilet. Ugh - I thought I was back in Italy where some places don't have seats for the toilets. Luckily, I managed to hold off.

Anyway, as I wandered around this pretty town I thought, well, if you are in a German town, you must have a German lunch! I stopped in at a the Icicle Brewery pub that had a nice looking menu and, more importantly, shady tables outside - and even more important, served a nice variety of beers!


I ordered a flight of beer (although the waitress called it something else) which featured their specialty beers. They were all delicious and very pleasing! I resisted the temptation to order a pint of each.... 


To accompany the beers, my lunch was the charcuterie plate (Farm to Table Meat and Cheese) which had an excellent assortment and was perfect to nosh on while I sipped my beer. 

All too soon, my plate was empty and my 4 little glasses were dry. It was time to move on. 


First stop was this cool water feature in Monroe - I don't think it has any special use except decorative - although it might be some sort of water management. I just thought it looked really nice!



Then I stopped at the Iron Goat Trail. There was this nice caboose (something you don't see very often, especially in Canada) at the trailhead. 



There were a variety of walks so I took the one that seemed most novel (and, again, involved a manmade structure), the Big Long Wall. It is a snowshed that was built to project the railway that used to go through. The photo at the interpretive centre had a picture of water rushing over it in a giant waterfall but, unfortunately, there was no waterfall for me to see! Still, it was impressive, out there in the forest, and was over 600 metres long! That's 6 football fields (or 5 and a half Canadian football fields!). 

After I left the Iron Goat Trail, I headed towards Seattle. Traffic became gradually more crowded until it was stop and go. When I finally got into the city limits, I just happened to drive by the BMW Motorrad! I felt a pang of belonging!

I ended up in the city centre about two hours before my checkin time of 6pm at the B and B. Not enough time to go to the EMP, but too early to checkin. I basically drove around Seattle in rush hour for a couple hours until I finally made it to the B and B. Total distance for the day was about 390 kms. 

OK - this is my first experience with AirBnB. I have booked several places with VRBO - but always a whole apartment, etc. I have booked B and Bs when travelling around the UK and Ireland and had fond memories of these places. Well appointed rooms, friendly hosts and a great breakfast. I was kind of looking forward to this sort of thing in Seattle. Sadly, it was not to be.

I still haven't decided whether I will put an honest review into AirBnB because there are around 48 reviews of the place I stayed and all of them glow with how wonderful the room was, friendly the hosts, etc, etc. I don't want to be the only jerk that disagrees. But I will tell you about it here.

I arrived and parked my scooter on a hill, managing to figure out how to get it on the centre stand without pushing it onto the grass or letting it drop onto my legs. Not easy, though!

The BnB was part of a bigger house. I arrived and knocked on the door. I had booked through a women name Luyao but her husband answered the door. He was not exactly unfriendly but didn't exude warmth, despite my attempts to be chatty. He pointed me in the direction of the room and up the stairs I went. 


The room was clean, that's for sure, but rather spartan. There was a double closet full of shelving - if I wanted to stay for a couple of months, I would have had room for all of my clothes as well as a few other boxes of belongings. There was a desk with a chair and a small fan on the floor. The bed itself was ok but the pillows meant for sleeping (not the decorative ones) were pretty flat and small and there were only two. I was hoping for a TV but none was in evidence. There was wifi, thank goodness, so it was a good thing that I had brought my iPad. 

In the write up for the BnB, they had said that shampoo and soap would be supplied for people staying short term. I went into the bathroom and the only shampoo and soap were half empty containers in the shower and a used piece of soap. Oh well, I thought, I got to get clean and I went ahead and used what was there. 

As for the B and B part - well I was welcome to use the kitchen, according to the instruction sheet, but there was nothing about breakfast being provided or food, for that matter. I didn't want to buy a loaf of bread in the morning just so I could have 2 pieces of toast!

I went back down after the shower to go for something to eat at a local pub. I made a bit of noise at the door because I knew my hosts were there but I didn't get a response. I called out "Bye!" and left. Not sure if I will try AirBnB again.

\


The pub was called Mulleady's Irish Pub and had great beer! I had a flight, then a pint, and finally another pint! I also had their steamed mussels which was cooked in one of the best sauces I have ever had! They gave me a small loaf of bread to soak up the sauce but there was still some left and I was tempted to ask for another loaf or just slurp back the bowl like soup!

As I was getting ready to leave, another patron had heard me talking to the waiter about doing a scooter ride. Turns out this guy works for - wait for it - BMW Motorrad! Talk about small world. Mind you, he spent a fair bit of time telling my why the US wasn't going to carry the Sport version any more and just the GT but I said, "Hey, they weren't offering $5000 off of the GT!"


Afterwards, I went to the QFC grocery store and picked up a container of mixed fruit for the morning as well as a bottle of cherry Coke Zero! We don't have that in Canada! I returned back to the BnB, cracked open my Coke, and watched Netflix until it was time to sleep. 





Sunday, 2 August 2015

Cascade Loop Scooter Ride Day 2 - Part 1


After my tequila infused sleep, I woke, feeling a tad bit dry, at around 7am. After enjoying the room shower, once again,  I headed to breakfast, complimentary, in the hotel lobby.

Now, when I'm riding my bicycle on a trip or hiking, I have no problems chowing down on eggs, sausage, and the like. But I knew what I would be doing today and, while riding does require energy, it probably doesn't require 1500 calories (logical thinking, to be sure, but remember, I am still a big guy!). So, instead of going for the eggs, sausage, and waffles, I happily plunked two pieces of whole wheat bread in the toaster, grabbed a thing of peanut butter and a banana, and sat down with my coffee to read my iPad. 

After my brekky, I packed my stuff, started up the Beemer and headed on down the highway. 


First stop was this strange radar cluster. I'm sure it is rather a simple scientific research station but it's kinda cool to think it is a secret listening post for known aliens. 

My next stop was to fill the tank in Pateros. When I downloaded the Cascades Loop guide, Pateros had a whole page dedicated to the town. I was expecting some bigger town, something like Winthrop or even bigger. What I found was a gas stations, and a few other stores, on a road parallel to the highway. Maybe I missed the turnoff and this was just the outskirts. I certainly hope so as it was rather small.

Onto the highway - and it was another nice day, although a bit hotter than the previous one. It was such a satisfying ride because of the lack of traffic. And if I found myself behind a slow vehicle that I couldn't pass, There were plenty of interesting things to look at. 



Next stop was Wells Dam. I am fascinated with manmade structures contrasted against nature. If you haven't already guessed from my blog, painting is another one of my passions, and I really enjoy painting nature that has something manmade in it. Wells Dam did not disappoint - it seemed like a very large dam and I took many photos, a couple I have shared here. Perhaps a painting is in the future?


In the hydro electric producing part of a dam, giant turbines spin, connected to generator, which, in turn, creates electricity (any questions, class?). I've seen the turbines at a local dam but Wells Dam had a very cool outdoor display featuring a turbine that you could walk right up to. It's really, really BIG! 

Another heritage marker followed and, while I didn't take a photo, it was basically talking about cattle drives. There were cattle raised in this area of the Okanogan and, during the Cariboo gold rush, the cattle drive went all the way up to Baskerville, BC where gold was being found! That's around 500 miles or 800 kms! That's a long way and that was back in the 1860s!

My next stop was Wenatchee - a pleasant surprise! It's an actual city and it was nice to ride through streets with stop lights and traffic once again. After parking my BMW C600 Sport,  I wandered the downtown core. 



They have a program that encourages sculptures to display and sell their paintings on the main street. I've included some of my favourites but there were a lot more.


Then, on to the important stuff - a visit to the bathroom and a nice mug of latte! The coffee shop was nice but, more importantly they a) had shady tables outside and b) had free wifi. Heaven!

After Wenatchee was a short ride to Cashmere. Another nice little town, one of things Cashmere is famous for is its fruit candy - Aplets and Cotlets - sort of jellied apricots and other fruit (or maybe turkish delight) which is very soft, formed in rectangles like chocolate bars, sometimes includes nuts, and covered in icing sugar. There's a version in our Okanagan in BC but it's hard to come buy and quite expensive.  

I walked into the shop and there was a big display with three open boxes that you could help yourself to samples (and, oh, I did!). There were tours available (which I gave a miss) so I looked at what was for sale. I found the little bars on sale for 3 for $1.50! What? That's incredible! And a box of Fruit Delights - $2! I should have brought the car and loaded up! Unfortunately, I had little room and was worried about everything melting to the consistency of molasses so I left with a box, three bars, and a sugar buzz that kept me going for the next part - but more on that later!