Wednesday, May 2, 2018

Never a Dull Moment

You might be tempted to think that I would be bored in Vancouver by now, what with knowing almost no one and spending so much time alone. The truth is, there is never a dull moment here so I am doing just fine. Great, actually.

So, something funny happened on Friday. Driving home from Abbotsford along 1st Street, I noticed some neighborhoods with such amazing Cherry tree canopies, I vowed to find a way to go there on my own. Using my handy app, Citymapper, I discovered I could take the bus from Granville and Drake, only about a ten minute walk away. 31 stops later, I exited the bus on Nanimo and 1st and began walking to Templeton Street. Oh what a sight it was!
As far as I could see, the trees were so full of blooms it was magical. Naturally, my camera was out, HOWEVER, after taking two photographs, the battery died. The crazy thing was that before leaving I put my other battery on the charger, thinking the one in my bag was get-to-go. Shows you what I know. That said, it was delightful walking under the canopy, camera, or no camera. About ten or so blocks later, I walked back over to Nanimo to catch the bus home. One thing that I find so neat about the neighborhoods is that almost no two homes are the same. How that is, I've no idea, but it makes for an entertaining walk.

Before leaving, I was oh so happy that, after weeks of delays, the window washers came.
You've got to imagine that those fellows have no shortage of work around these parts!

After living with bare trees for what seemed like forever, the sight of all of the vibrant green of new leaves is nothing short of glorious. The brightness against one of my favorite buildings along Seymour Street.
I can't remember where I was returning from Friday afternoon, which is irrelevant anyway, I walked into the condo and immediately noticed there was no traffic on the Granville Bridge. What's that all about? The last time there was no traffic was when they were filming that Deadpool chase scene last September.
From my balcony perch, I noticed people looking upward, so back down again to investigate and here's what it was all about.
As one of the major thoroughfares in Vancouver, closing the bridge on a Friday afternoon, well, you can imagine what that does for the rest of the bridges. Talking to some folks, it turns out the same fellow hung from the Burrard bridge the day before, however, they were able to talk him back on. Not so easy this time as the ordeal ended up lasting nearly twelve hours! Or so I read somewhere, however, information was hard to find as they do not report it in the regular media for fear of copycats. All they will publish is that there is an "incident". Bruce woke in the middle of the night and saw the police still gathered. What patience!

Meanwhile the evening light was so beautiful. Again, after so much time under gray skies, it's hard to get enough of this view.
Saturday Bruce went to the office while I did my Saturday chores. That beautiful view from the evening before was no more with rain steadily falling. Because I don't want to miss a thing, after I was done I took a little walk around the neighborhood, wearing my hood and camera under my rain jacket. The extreme red tulips are nearing their end.
Here is where the hair story comes in. Even though I walk this little route most days, Saturday was the first I noticed an Aveda hair salon, that apparently, I'd passed multiple times. Anyway, I stuck my head in the door and long story short, Brent said he could fit me in within the half hour. Slightly nervous having someone new highlight my hair, the woman in the chair piped up, "he's been doing my hair for 25 years so you should do it!" Sold! It actually turned out to be quite entertaining with him juggling about four clients at once, including one older woman who came in for a blow dry. She has him fix her hair when she is in town, living much of the year in London where she has it cut. I learned she used to be a band manager for the likes of Queen and Elton John.  See, I told you it was entertaining. Plus, it turned out very nice.

Look what I see from the balcony--yup Dogwoods.
Sunday was also rainy, and Monday began under very cloudy skies, the perfect time for me to walk to SP. Before I did, however, the bridge provided more entertainment.
This protest was for clean water which I assumed all along that we already had. While this protest seemed relatively mild, apparently hordes of people blocked the doors to City Hall yesterday, demanding affordable housing.  It's hard to argue with their demands when housing costs are so astronomical here.

Back to more lighthearted fare---

The Handkerchief tree is blooming! We are so, so lucky to have three parks within blocks of our place and one of them has what I've just read here, is also called a Ghost tree. When I met the gardeners a few weeks ago, Dale told me to be on the look out as it would be happening soon. Seemingly overnight, these two, very large trees, were covered in both leaves and this cool "handkerchief."
I know you assume I am exaggerating but the flowers here defy imagination. At least mine anyway. If only our azaleas bloomed like the pink ball you see. Should you be wondering, there are leaves on that plant.
Even Bruce noticed the proliferation of blooms, stopping to photograph a red one on his way to work and sending it to me. I'm pretty confidant that this is the only flower photograph on his phone! And oh my goodness, the green of the trees is well, I sound like a broken record don't I?
Even the rocks are turning green!
Green or the Japanese Maple tree? You decide which is more dramatic.
Now I am in the park, with my head bobbing to and fro, in utter amazement over what I am seeing. A smorgasbord for your eyes!
Plus, everything is so big, as I suppose is to be expected in a rain forest climate, but still amazes me. I came across a HUGE Cherry tree with the most unusual color of blooms, that a nearby gardener explained is quite a rare specimen and people are coming from all over to take photographs.
If only there were time and space for you to see what I saw. Alas, both of us would be worn out should I do so, however, I must show you the Anemones that I'm afraid are nearing their season's end.
For the second time, in as many months, the water in the building was turned off from 9-5, leaving me in no rush to return, spending a crazy amount of time walking, and taking it all in. I was thrilled that, once again, I crossed paths with a Northern Flicker, who was, oh so busy digging and digging.
And in a first since coming to Vancouver, I saw a cat and not just any cat, one with super cool markings.
How can you not just gasp with joy when there are these kind of sights to behold?
Unreal, isn't it? Autumn was amazing, however, Spring is pretty darn good. Continuing the same color way, as my friend Irene would call it, here's an interesting tulip I came across.
Growing amongst, what I think are called Bluebells. Looks like this tulip was snatched from the jaws of a paper shredder!

Right about now you are probably agreeing with me that there is never a dull moment here, aren't you? Especially if you are from Florida. Guess what? Continuing that theme, I'm now ready to take the train to Metrotown to see this which should be quite the spectacle, or so I hope! I'll let you know.

yours truly,

Gail

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