David and Goliath

We got out on our first little sail of the summer the other day, the winds were light but steady and the sun had finally burned away most of the clouds. We didn’t venture far, just around Snake Island four miles out due to the light air. We were kept company by a couple of these big fellas waiting at anchor to get into Vancouver’s port across the Strait.

They are a bane to some of the residents here, hearing the rumbling as they let out their chain rode to drop heavy anchors, complaining of their noisy generators running during the night, and their sometimes bright lights, especially if they anchor particularly close to our island, but I’m fascinated by their  scale, the engineering of their structure, and the historical connection they carry.

Moving cargo by sea is ancient, the world’s economy has hinged on floating vessels up and down great river and ocean systems for millennia. I don’t want to comment necessarily on the cargo they now transport other than to say besides the many loads of sneakers, import cars, stuff for the Wal-Mart’s, or raw log exports – lets face it we buy all this stuff, no right to judge what is necessary goods; there is perhaps much more that is down right dangerous like the diluted  toxic Bitumen that will be coming through the pipeline from the Alberta tar sand’s channeled through B.C.’s mountain range and pristine wilderness for freighter export out of Vancouver’s busy harbour.  Odds are certain this big red ship from Majuro will have such cargo.

It’s the paradox of human ingenuity, we can create incredible feats of engineering that by the same token can harm or destroy. The double edge sword that’s hidden in our many revered works. The Pyramids or the great wall of China can inspire and we marvel and congratulate our innovations, but the lives of thousands of slaves that severely toiled and perished seem to escape us.

And while these ships are striking to see up close, their tenuous journey out to the open pacific before first threading through our narrow passages and skirting our active gulf islands causes some amount of disdain.   But what can we do? We are hypocrites all.

 

 

 

Back home

I’ve been home for two weeks now after spending the month of May in Kimberley visiting my daughter while Bob was working in the area, and I’ve been so busy I haven’t put time aside to post. Upon our return we were greeted with a lawn of very tall grass, and because it was already the end of May we had to get busy buying seeds and vegetable starts and flowers, getting the vegetable gardens planted, putting flower baskets together, mowing and weeding.

We did have a little parcel we discovered in our hedge while weeding, a nest of twelve quail eggs. The mother must’ve been out feeding when we saw the pale and brown speckled eggs nestled in the tall grass. When I checked them the next day I thought they were gone, that a raccoon had gotten to them, but then I looked again I could then notice the excellent camouflage of the male parent spread out over the nest.

I also needed to get up to see my Mom for some serious breakout time; I take her out about three times a week, taking her for lunch, drives, and walks down at the beach front. Although my sister got her out on the weekends while I was away, mom was getting a bit of cabin fever being cloistered during the weeks.

Yesterday Bob and I worked hard in pulling up a massive bamboo type ground cover that had gotten away on us and was encroaching on the veg garden area, and today- I’m beat! Coupled with staying up too late last night to try to watch Saturday Night Live and then waking at 6 this morning, I can never sleep in no matter how late I go to bed! I feel like a wet rag today~

So after doing a bit of raking I’ve surrendered to the remainder of the day to give it a rest. Find a comfy spot in the sun maybe and read. I do need a trip to the library, having finished Paradise by Toni Morrison while in Kimberley, I’ll see what I can re-read from my own library ~

Taking a walk

I now have to bombard everyone with a series of photographs of areas where I’ve been on daily walks with the rugnuts. As mentioned in the previous post Kimberley is replete with hiking avenues for every level of adventurer, and the views are gorgeously absorbing.

 

The unpaved Volksmarch trail, about 2 kilometers in length, follows along side the 28 kilometer paved Northstar rail2trail below.

The ridge trail above the town of Marysville that links up to the Volksmarch trail and to the NorthStar trail. This is where I come to walk most days because it is open and sunny, easy access, great views and it gets in a good length of a walk.

 

 

The Northstar Rail to Trail though is a fantastic path for a good long walk or bike ride, which my daughter and I did last year. It will take you all the way in to Cranbrook 28 kilometers away. The hounds and I spent a better part of the day on it starting from Marysville. And like I mentioned the entire area is gorgeous!

Clouds over Kimberley

Coming out of the woods from a walk with the dogs I glanced up and saw this. Stopped me in my tracks, I thought- Hmm that’s impressive. Googling them I learn on a BBC iwonder site that these are called Mammatus (for obvious reasons) and says that these clouds are not clouds in their own right but an after effect of other clouds, are made up mostly of ice, and come on the back edge of a retreating storm. I just say WOW.

 

Kootenay Dogs Life

Into my second week in Kimberley which means I am now dog sitting daughter Roo’s two Rugnuts, a.k.a. her Chihuahuas Dexter and the younger Jackson, (or should it be Jackson the Younger?) while she and CJ take their Babymoon in Puerto Vallarta and while she can still comfortably fly and stand the heat, or at this time of year in Mexico the humidity, which as she texted me yesterday is muggy, muggy, muggy!

The pooches have been very well-behaved contrary to what we were expecting. We braced for LOTS of barking from 2-year-old Jackson being that last year when we were here Bob couldn’t so much as shift in his chair, let alone stand up without Jackson going Baaallistic. Ear splitting barks. The worst kind. Dexter is 8 and has mellowed well. When Roo got him as a pup while working up in Northern Manitoba (not the usual place to find a desert breed!) he was bundled and packed off everywhere she went no matter the weather. He’d be swaddled up warm in a back pack with his head sticking out the top when she went snowshoeing or in a sweater and off leash on spring back country hikes. Turned him into a pretty cool little guy. Jackson still needs work.

We (dogs and I) get out for one long walk or two shorter walks (morning/afternoon) each day on one of the many great walking/hiking trials that are part of the extensive trail system weaving  and winding all over the Kimberley- Marysville mountain area and, oh so conveniently, there is one such trail just outside this door. We only need to walk a few steps that puts us on a wooded path leading into a not too dense pine forest with well-marked trails.

There is also the Trickle Creek Golf Course adjacent to these woods and directly behind the condos and some of these wooded trails meet up with some of the paved paths on the course. The course is closed at the moment so it’s all right to walk it with the dogs, and so many times we’ll start out in through the woods and segue onto the golf course, a great work-out walk by the way due to the very hilly terrain, It’s in the mountains after all! The dogs love it, they get all that nervous energy out of their system. Mostly applies to Jackson.

As a consequence of  the daily hikes, and puffing up the long inclines, I’ve noticed a drastic improvement in my stamina in just this short time. When I first arrived just last week and went on a long walk I was very noticeably winded very quickly, now I notice my breathing isn’t nearly as labored and my legs keep a nice steady gait even up those slopes! Bob says it might be the altitude that was making me winded, and while ascending to  3,670 feet in Kimberley from Vancouvers 269 feet, there may be some affecting circumstances but I would venture isn’t the only reason, being out of shape is. Bless his heart anyway.

Dexter, Let’s go!

Oh and  I should clarify, Jackson is actually a Chihuaweenie or is it Chaweenie? Anyway part Chihuahua, Dachshund and Alarm system.