Thursday, August 28, 2014

A Magical Look Up

My sister sent me this photo yesterday and my heart just about burst with an awe almost as magical as the expression in her grandchild's (my great-nephew's) eyes.  He recently turned 3 and was looking up at a ferris wheel before taking the first ride of his young life.  As my sister said, "I read a book recently about the Chicago World's Fair. The Ferris wheel was a wonder when it was first designed and built by a man named Ferris for that fair. He would be thrilled that the magic hasn't worn off yet."  I questioned my sister and learned the book is called The Devil in the White City and is by Erik Larson.  I hope to read it at some point, but in the mean time, I savour the magic in my great-nephew's eyes.  I thought this was the most perfect picture to share with Travel with Intent's meme, Look Up, Look Down.  That meme doesn't appear to have opened up yet for this week, but I thank her for enhancing my perspective of the world, and will share this post when it does.  May every day in all of our lives hold at least one moment of wonder as beautiful as this. 
Our day was a quiet one yesterday, but there were a few other "look up and look down" moments.  In the morning, I took this photo from our 8th floor apartment of the mural by Os Gemeos, happening even as I blog.  The artists are working feverishly to complete it for the opening on September 7th.
Later in the afternoon, we watched a telephone pole being installed outside Harrison Galleries, our favourite café and gallery, and visited almost every single day.
I am more and more fascinated with the day-to-day jobs that keep a city functioning.
 My small lens is still being repaired, so these were taken with the 300 mm, thus..
explaining the necessity of showing you the whole picture in smaller increments. 
 I liked the reflection of the workers in the Harrison Gallery window here.
 These gentlemen have some impressive skills, ones that I hadn't thought of before I became involved in the photography obsession that changed my view of the world.
 Shortly after this photo, they smiled and waved at us.  Sadly, I had put my camera away.
 Bill is the one who really opened my eyes to the fascination of city jobs.  He points out many things that I would otherwise miss.  Black Jack loves all people in reflective city gear because of one worker who was on a project near our apartment and fed her treats.  She could stare hopefully (and in her most winsome manner) at them for hours.  
 And speaking of Black Jack, it occurs to me..
  that the greater part of her day.. 
is spent looking up from the ground or down from Bill's arms.
 And I guess a good part of our day is spent looking down at her.
And finally, a few photos taken at Granville Island Tuesday.  These trees are along..
the side of the bridge over the island. 
This sculpture was in a window of a gallery that was closed for the evening so I cannot give you the artist's name. 
 Standing near the dock before heading home, we looked up into the sky..
and then down into False Creek.  Thank you so much for visiting.  And, special thanks to my sister for sharing a photo that will stay in my heart for a long time to come.  For more up-down perspectives, you may want to hop on over to Travel with Intent's fascinating meme.   

ABC Wednesday - Letter G

ABC Wednesday, founded by Mrs. Nesbitt, and carried forward by a devoted team of loyal volunteers, is now in its 8th year.  This week, "G" is the celebrated letter of the alphabet. 

*A note: there are two videos at the end of this post of excerpts from a street performance we enjoyed on Tuesday.  My video skills are ghastly.  I forgot that video will not work in portrait view, so the view is sideways for the first film and not much better in the second.  But the atmosphere comes through of people enjoying a beautiful evening and impromptu music making.  The first is a bit of "Me and Bobby McGee" and the second is  a sample of some piano improvisations that engaged the passers-by for a couple of hours.  That young man was playing when we stopped the first time, and he was still playing when we returned from Granville Island.  We spent a few minutes talking with him.  He pet Black Jack as we talked.  I found him to be a gentle soul, and a humble, talented musician .  You may want to play those videos without actually looking at them while you read the post.

I begin with an arrangement Bill did a few weeks ago when his gaze fell across some beads on a rock in Olympic Village.
I've been learning a few words each week by checking out an Unusual Words that begin with ** site.  This week, I settled on the following eight words (some of them glaringly obscure), with the last one being my absolute favourite.  Doesn't grinagog have a wonderful ring to it?

1. gallimaufry - hodge-podge
2. gardyloo - warning cry (my 2nd favourite)
3. gaudiloquent - speaking joyfully
4. gelogenic - produce laughter
5. galeanthropy - belief that one is a cat. (Wow! Anyone here heard of that one?)
6. gigantology - study of giants
7. grammary - magic, enchantment
8. grinagog - one who is constantly grinning

Here's a gallimaufry (hodge-podge) account of our good day yesterday.  First, it became obvious that my shoulder/arm issues after a fall on Sunday would not require professional help.  That resulted in a gaudiloquent lilt in my voice for sure.  By the end of the day, I had turned into a grinagog, especially after we discovered that my "broken" camera  was working after all.  We gathered that after musing that I could have fallen on a "button" and changed a setting accidentally.  Shifting a dial (in my defence, that dial didn't exist on my old camera) led to this photo of the tree in front of our balcony.  It was a gleeful moment for sure when the camera worked as it should.  (So, TexWis, only one area of my life appears to need professional help now.  Your gelogenic comment yesterday was just perfect :) 
When we biked through Olympic Village later that day, the cloud groupings..
were especially gorgeous.  
Algae covered most of this tiny offshoot from the creek and green was the colour of the day.
This dog was about half the size of Black Jack and feeling grumpy about her presence.  Black Jack didn't feel threatened so she ignored the dogs grumblings.  I thought the aged pup was about the cutest thing I had seen ever (except for Bill and Black Jack) though a good grooming might have helped his/her mood a little.
The gossamer textures in this flower added to the.. 
sense of grammary (magic, enchantment) all about.  It was a gargantuan challenge..
to keep from gasping and gushing with pleasure as I played with the focus on my camera.
Bill waited by False Creek, happy to soak in the day and guard the bikes.
I found another grammary moment in the refections of a mom and her girl with their dog.
We hadn't seen this grinagog False Creek ferry for weeks, but it showed up yesterday.  I was happy to catch just a glimpse of the grin on the front of the boat as it passed.  
I don't think I have any galeanthropic (believing I am a cat) notions, but perhaps this cat, spotted near the Cambie Bridge, guesses himself to be human.  Certainly, 
he gadded about, happy to mingle with the people who were enjoying Vancouver's Keys to the Streets program.  He balked grouchily when a lady tried to restrict his movement, but she did it for his own good.  She checked the phone number on his tag and then called his human, only to find that he was allowed to roam freely.  His human saw no.. 
problem with his gregarious..
personality and wanderlust, but I grappled with a fear for his safety. 
I admired his grit..
and found his gutsy attitude amazing..
since that space under the Cambie Bridge suggested gruesome possibilities for lurking predators.
Gone!  genuine belief that one shouldn't gainsay a system that appears to be doing just fine without interference told me to trust to the human's judgement and let the cat be.
A schedule of performers had been posted, and passing cyclists stopped to check it out.  Bill and I decided to give it a go later, on the way back from Granville Island. 
The cat, meanwhile, had fulfilled his goal..
and leapt from the gangplank (okay, a tiny stretch there) to the wall.
He decided to take a gander at the treats in.
Bill's hand, but after a quick glance, thought they were better suited for dogs..
and was galvanized into action to head home (I hope).
Bidding him a gentlemanly good-bye, Bill prepared to continue our ride.
The sights at Granville Island..
ran the gamut from reflections of greenery..
to those of the everpresent geese.
There's a genteel live-and-let-live spirit about the place..
that I find most gracious and genial.
We stopped to see if more progress had been made on the work by Os Gemeos
the Brazilian artists and identical twins (Otavio and Gustavo Padolfo) currently involved in a multi-city “Giants” series. The one in Vancouver follows up on earlier creations in their native Brazil as well as in Greece, the U.S., Poland, Portugal, England, and the Netherlands.
The gist of the message..
about giants appears to involve quite a complex range of expressions and attitudes, some of them rather gloomy and perhaps even grim.
A gull sat at the highest point above the silos.  I wonder if s/he "got it" that Os Gemeos are world famous.  Not bad to be governing a project by artists who have exhibited at the Tate Modern in London and the Museum of Contemporary Art in Los Angeles, to name just a few galleries proud to display their work. 
The guard told us that the artists were working on the other side, and that there was no admittance beyond this point.  I didn't see the hands and feet draping down in rather grotesque fashion until I took a closer look at this photo.  One of the things I love best about photography is the chance to grasp things I missed the first time round.
The sky was gorgeous as we rode back again to listen..
to a few of the musicians.  I won't name them as I'm not sure the list we saw was accurate, but I enjoyed this gentleman's singing.  There is a one-minute video with a portion of his song near the end.  Sadly, my video is sideways.   
Grinagog expressions were all about us..
and small wonder why.  The evening felt enchanted.. a grammary time for sure.
Bill and Black Jack waited with the general public, all gratified to feel the positive vibes.
Suddenly Bill stood up.  There was to be an ice bucket challenge.  I'd gamble that most of you have heard about this social media phenomena to raise money for ALS research.
We both worried for this young woman, having watched some videos earlier in the day of ice bucket gaffes that were supposed to be funny but struck us as dangerous.
Fortunately, she asked for two tall volunteers and at least one of them was reassuringly gigantic in a gangly sort of way.  They were well able to support the bucket and the grinagog expression,
even while drenched under a cascade of gelid water,
left no doubt that this was a goal the young woman was grateful to achieve.
Bill and I, again, were of one mind in feeling it would have been gratifying to see someone with a warm blanket to wrap around the girl, but perhaps, she had told no one of her plan until the last minute.  I hope she lived nearby and was able to have a gloriously warm bath very soon after this photo was taken.  That concludes my ABC Wednesday post except for the videos that you may feel free to ignore in the interests of time. I apologize for the post's arrival one day late, but thank the meme's volunteers and Mrs. Nesbitt for their gracious understanding.  Thank you, as well, to you, for stopping by.  Your presence has gladdened my day for sure.  Have a wonderful Thursday!