A tanker sits at anchor in front of Gabriola Island on a March morning. Some don’t appreciate them here, sometimes there have been several waiting here to get into Vancouver. I don’t mind them. It adds some interest to the sea scape. We can hear and even feel them drop their anchors in the channel. There will be this deep rumbling / scrapping sound and sometimes a little boom when it hits the sea bed.
Bob though is a bit sensitive to the sound of their generators running, a low hum, especially at night.
Unfortunately I don’t hear it – or it doesn’t disturb me enough.
“Can’t you hear that? What you mean you can’t hear that? !”
I crossed the water to see these guys a few nights ago at the theatre downtown, a great show. I adore Lyle, his vocal styling , his masterful writing and guitar prowess, and to be frank it was he that I was really excited about. I didn’t know a lot about John Hiatt, I knew some of his work, watched some You Tube videos, but all that changed with seeing him in live performance. He was Amazing. IS amazing. A harmonious contrast to Lyle and equally powerful.
Coupled with their (really funny! ) dry wit bantering it was an intimate, warm welcoming night with two of the best music masters, made us feel we were just sitting with two guys singing and playing guitar in the living room.
I have spent the day working on watercolor sketches, choosing a couple of past prime roses that were given to me on Valentines – yes they sat in the vase as their water slowly evaporated till now. I can be inattentive at times. Using low-grade student quality paints that have sat for far too long, some of the tubes rock solid from age, I thought I would begin. But the paint quality isn’t an issue at this time since my focus at this stage is to get a feel for the medium, and practicing looseness.
Watercolor is a different animal, once the paint touches down on paper it’s there to stay. It is key to be fluid and not overwork a piece, it almost becomes a meditation on the balance of letting go, and knowing when to withhold, and it is so very evident that I need a lot of meditation practice. I have very seldom ever worked in this medium, choosing Acrylics for its speed of drying and forgiving plasticity. Right now I have these poor little paints at my disposal to facilitate my getting back to painting again. And, it’s better for me to work small-scale for the time being as I reawaken those once dormant creative muscles.
I craved some sun so I went to town. My island neighborhood is so heavily treed that much of the road is shady this time of year. There are spots to sit in the sun but not so much for a long walk in the sun. For that I needed to go across the water to town where the entire waterfront bathes in light. And fortunately there is a splendid walkway that hugs the shoreline for about 2 miles. All totaled I clocked my 10,000 steps easily, and a sufficient dose of good ultra violet therapy. Skin damage be damned.
When I look at this view of my little island and Newcastle Park from town I know I must live in one of the best little corners of Canada by far.
In truth it has taken me some time to have real affection for my town even though I’ve lived here longer than anywhere else in my 59 years; went to college here, had my daughter here, met and married my husband here, built a home.
But there is nothing not to love about Nanaimo, although it took years of desperate struggle, it has blossomed over the years and it’s harbor front is its winning card hands down. It’s a bit urban, some quaintness, great concerts, and celebrations, and what city can boast an 800 acre island park right in its harbor accessible only by boat?
Oh, a note about the Photo of the pirate at the top. That is our late, great (hmmm.) pirate Mayor Frank Ney. Black Frank, immortalized in bronze. He held the office of Mayor for 21 years and was also a developer. He was the guy to subdivide my little island, shown behind him, and responsible, among other very important things, of naming many of the city’s streets; Dingle Bingle hill, Twiggly-wiggly Road, Buttertubs, and Berger-Op-Zoom. My island didn’t escape unique naming, we received his Piratey legacy with Captain Kids Terrace, Pirates Lane, Treasure Trail, Captain Morgans. It’s said he’d delegate the business of street naming to his young children. He had eleven, so.