Wednesday, April 18, 2018

I Asked for Wonder

At church, two weeks ago, hoping to relieve his overflowing bookcases, one of the congregants offered up part of his home library, bringing about 300 books to give away. Arrayed on tables, the mostly theological books had many takers, including me who brought home two, one for Bruce, and one for myself. Not that I knew anything about the author, Rabbi Abraham Heschel, but how could I pass up a book with that title when it so perfectly describes how I've felt these months in Vancouver?
Well, really, all of my life.

I could not.

  1. 1.
    a feeling of surprise mingled with admiration, caused by something beautiful, unexpected, unfamiliar, or inexplicable.

    "he had stood in front of it, observing the intricacy of the ironwork with the wonder of a child"

  1. 1.
    desire or be curious to know something.

    "how many times have I written that, I wonder?"

    synonyms:ponder, think about, meditate on, reflect on, muse on, puzzle over, speculate about, conjecture
    be curious about
    "I wondered what was on her mind"
  2. 2.
    feel admiration and amazement; marvel.

    "people stood by and wondered at such bravery"

    synonyms:marvel, be amazed, be astonished, stand in awe, be dumbfounded, gapegoggle;
    informalbe flabbergasted
    "people wondered at such bravery"

    Referring to God, in a preface to one of Rabbi Herchel's books of poetry, he writes that "I did not ask for success; I asked for wonder. And You gave it to me. Apparently he met with great success in his life, and perhaps, being in a constant state of wonder contributed. 

    Whether that is true, or not, obviously, I cannot say although it seems as if it could not hurt!  For me, I am always wondering about stuff, particularly here,  where I wonder if it will ever quit raining? I wonder why they allow people to live on the streets. I wonder about the mountains, the flowers, the trees. 

Then too, I wonder why I cannot get this darn blog to format correctly!! Apparently, we will have to make do today because it seems to have a mind of its own. I wonder if seagulls actually eat the entire starfish? Actually, recently I read that they are now called "seastars" and I wonder when that happened?
As to the rain, holy cow! Thinking it must be more rain than normal, I did come across an article that states there had been rain on 13 of the 15 days in April, and to that total they can add another day as it poured on Monday.
I could not help but wonder why the two ferries were running so close together, perhaps one is broken down? Then too, I wonder what the big trees, that have yet to get their leaves, are, and when will they get leaves anyway?
Now that the tulips are coming up everywhere, I am in a state of wonder, both the noun and verb variety usage. Further, I kept wondering when would they turn the park fountain back on after it was shut down for the winter? I'm wondering about that no more as it came back on about a week ago.
What color will this tree eventually be?
And what about this plant? Only recently have the leaves sprouted on these bright red stems.
Does a fruit bearing Cherry tree look different than one that is sterile? How long do the blooms actually last? There are so MANY things I know nothing about here!
I've been having a little fun taking pictures of people taking pictures of the blooming flowers, mostly women, but I've seen some men too. And why not? Beauty makes life worth living for everyone!
Taken during a short walk in extremely dreary weather, the red is startling in its intensity.
I saw it again yesterday on my walk to Stanley Park when the sun appeared briefly. Perhaps a better descriptive would be scarlet? Doesn't that just conjure up intensity?
While on the subject of intense color, who doesn't adore spring green? Not this gal who lives for it.
And to think that less than two weeks ago they were but sticks rising toward the sky. I am learning first hand why I've heard, countless times from folks who have moved to Florida, how much they miss the seasons. Not enough to continue living with them, mind you, but it all makes so much more sense to me now. I was talking to the cashier at Shoppers Drug Mart who is originally from the Phillipines. I'd gone there for something or other during a break in the rain one day last week. She mentioned that despite the rain, she loves living in Vancouver because the weather is never boring. She, of course, is from a climate similar to ours in Florida that I describe as "greater and lesser summer." Thinking about all the different types of weather we've experienced here, including fog, snow, rain and then no rain for months, it is most definitely not boring. 

Perhaps by now you are wondering about no flower pictures? I'm doing my very best to not overload you because, well, I don't want you to experience flower fatigue, although how that could be possible is unimaginable to me! Nevertheless, I cannot keep all this beauty and wonder to myself, can I?
I came across these the other day, making me so very happy with their intense color and beautiful shape. Since that time I've found them in white as well. 

Trout Lily is the name of the neat yellow flowers, apparently in extremely cold climates, a harbinger of Spring.
When I showed you the Vancouver House the other day, it was from one angle that really didn't do the complexity of this building justice. Bruce seems to think it has "topped out."
What I'm wondering about is whether or not they will have the same sort of problems that occurred in London when an oddly shaped building reflected the sun so intensely that it burned a car down below, because one day last week, when the sun appeared briefly, I turned around to look at it and had to turn away the sun reflected so strongly. I guess time will tell. (note the incredibly dull sky!)

In an effort to get a Spring photograph of me (although I'm not dressed very springy), Bruce took this near our lunch spot on Sunday.
I very much wish I was not wearing a coat, tights, sweater and skirt, however, the temperature is still much too chilly to wear less. Not wanting to stay in the condo all afternoon, after a stop by Hudson's Bay, we took the ferry over to the North Shore. I wonder if, in the future, Orlando might organize more festivals like they have here where every month there are dozens of them. This month one such festival features photography exhibitions all over the city. Our mission was to go to the new Polygon gallery. So not what I was expecting when we went inside, although this view of piles of sulfer and coal, as art, should have given me a clue. Newly constructed, we wondered how in the world one of the large windows broke.
Should you be wondering, the art installation in the foreground is made of construction paper.
I must admit, in person, the printed words went unnoticed. Mostly my disappointment came from the lack of photographs, rather than their quality. The one in the back is made on a huge lightbox which was very cool. 

The North Shore was home to most of Vancouver's industry, and there still is quite a lot along the water, however, what drove the economy for many, many years, was shipbuilding. The new gallery and other development is replacing the former shipyards, however, they have not forgotten the men and women who worked there for so many years. This was a very interesting display.
Stacked on the ground and along the top are concrete time sheets for the workers, many of whom were women, all of them working for wages that, well, you can imagine how low they were. We walked around a bit, however, it was darn chilly and time to head back on the ferry.
Before we came here I had no idea how much American news and politics would be discussed as part of everyday conversation. Robson Square did not disappoint as we walked through, but I sure wonder who these folks are.
Does anyone really look like they care about Syria? As I've stated before, it is a wonder to me how much protesting is a part of life in Vancouver. By the way, remember the folks who tie-wrapped themselves to fences in an effort to stop the pipeline? The project is now on hold, for how long is tbd. Furthermore, Alberta is now threatening to cut petroleum deliveries to BC until they concede. Gas prices are dependent on Alberta and there is talk the price will go up significantly. I have no idea what 1.50/litre translates into but I do know it is far more than we pay in Florida!  Wait a second, for someone who says she wonders about stuff, this is something I need to know. Turns out a litre is about one quarter of a gallon. But you knew that already, didn't you? 

The days are crazy long now with the sunrise at 6:15 and sunset at 8:09 today. That is a lot of daylight for there to be almost no daylight, if you get what I mean. However, the good news is that we may have turned a corner, as it is merely mostly cloudy today, rain again tomorrow, and then, my favorite symbol on the weather phone app appears for days!! Hallelujah and hallelujah. Bears repeating you know.

And you thought all I would be writing about was flowers. Surprised you, didn't I? They will be back my friends as the walk to Stanley Park yesterday was, well, a wonder. Seriously, I was speechless. Come back again and wonder right along with me.
yours truly,


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