Friday, August 7, 2009

A fun day

Yesterday was fun, almost from start to finish.  It began with a certain amount of dread, knowing I was down to the wire in having to deal with a Telus conflict.  The tedious route through voice instructions to reach a human always drives me crazy, but it went slightly better than the previous attempts to straighten out an unfair billing for service that never happened.  The unusually sympathetic person I finally reached gave me hope for an eventual resolution.

Dreaded phone call completed, I packed Black Jack into her carrier, and we were off to North Vancouver.  The plan was to meet my friend, Dianne, and her dog, Haley.  Dianne's birthday was on Tuesday, so a celebratory visit to Thomas Haas was in order.  But first things first - we met near the osprey nest:)

With the tide out, Dianne, Haley, Black Jack and I climbed down the rocks, and walked out to where we had an excellent view of the nest.  Junior was alone, and was NOT happy.
Haley loves the seaside, and was busy greeting everyone who came by with a gentle wave of her tail, and if they were lucky, a lean to say "I'm happy you are here."  She is a sweet lovely being.  I have never done her justice with my photos, but here is the best of my attempts yesterday.  
Mama finally returned.
Both she and Junior were waiting for Papa to return with some food.  I think the time was long, because Mama made a few short trips away, gathering nesting material.  I felt she was just trying to relieve boredom and pass the time.  (There goes my anthropomorphism again.)   
Papa finally came in.  He isn't shown here, but as you can see, Mama and Junior are still not happy.
I thought the last picture showed about as much anger as any one bird could muster, but I was clearly wrong.  Mama is really telling Papa off in no uncertain terms.
Black Jack could not understand what all the fuss was about.  She had lots to explore, and..
.. Dianne gave her an absolutely beautiful massage whenever she asked.
Meanwhile, Mama and Junior continued to call loudly.  That is one of Junior's wings you see at the left.  I am guessing that he will soon begin to stand at the edge of the nest and flap those wings in preparation for what I hope will be a successful fledging.
Papa was the source of all the frustration.  He brought a perfectly excellent looking fish to his own pylon, and proceeded to flip it around.
After that, he began to eat it!  With the tide pushing us further and further back to shore, Dianne and I finally had to give up waiting for Papa to do what we felt was his job.  I couldn't believe he wasn't sharing that fish.  Hopefully, he did so after we left.  I am wondering if this is one of Papa's strategies to encourage Junior to consider getting out there and finding his own food.  Or, maybe he was just very, very hungry.  
 We headed to Thomas Haas, stopping along the way so that Dianne could show me a favorite rock that always gives her pleasure.  Now, that pleasure is X2.  I like to think it may have been one of the students from my school who spent time carving "love" into that rock.  
Thomas Haas, one of my absolute favorite haunts.  Great lattes, amazing sandwiches, and divine sweets created with the eye of an artist and the touch of honest to goodness caring.  Thomas and all of his employees take time to know their clients and to make them feel welcomed and appreciated.  If you have never been there, it is at the end of Harbourside Drive, with access to some excellent dog walking trails, and absolutely worth the visit.  We sat outside, having one of those comfortable times that are the mark of a good friendship, and enjoying the flowers in Thomas' window. 
Souls and stomachs replenished, Black Jack and I said good-bye to Dianne and Haley, and headed home.  We stopped for a rest along English Bay.  Although Black Jack always seems happy and comfortable in her carrier, I don't like to keep her in it for more than a half hour, so we take frequent breaks.  She chased her ball, got tummy rubs, watched the seagulls, crows and pigeons and had several lovely interactions with children.  I didn't take pictures, but it was another part of our good day.

Home, a nap, some food, and we were off again, this time to Jericho.  There always seems to be a heron in the same spot by the little bridge. 
The beaver made an appearance too.  It was hard at work..
..but took a little break to check out Black Jack, who was watching intently, her head between the bridge railings.
We took a walk over to the beach to see the sunset..
.. and came back via the rabbit patch, where Scruffy, the black rabbit with the torn ear, and a companion, were busy having a tete-a-tete.  Sorry about the glowing eyes, but I haven't figured out how to avoid that when using a flash.  
Almost an hour later, and the heron was still in the same spot when we crossed the bridge to go home.  It was now completely dark.  Black Jack managed to elicit another massage, this time from two young girls, and I had a conversation with a cyclist who was also enjoying the beavers and heron.
Home for the night, the icing on the perfect day was an e-mail (and great pictures to describe his day) from Bill.  Now, it is 10:27 in the morning, and I have had the luxury of doing a blog post.  With the day ahead to do absolutely whatever I choose, I'm not sure yet what that will be, but I do know for certain that I love holidays.


  1. I'm so glad you had a fun day and such a picture-esque one too! I love the expression on the beaver's face in that second photo - how nice to be able to see him so clearly.

    As for the pics of the ospreys - they made my day! I, too, wondered if papa's lack of sharing is part of the strategy used to persuade junior to fledge. Maybe mama wasn't yelling at papa to "Hurry up with that dinner" but instead was saying "Don't you dare give this child any more snacks today!"

  2. Wow Carol that was a fun day, along with other photos, I also the most enjoy your night photo of the heron, absolutely amazing. Anna :)

  3. I agree with Anna, the night shot of the Heron was amazing. Your camera isn't afraid of the dark and neither are you. Just be home before midnight unless you are having too much fun! Too bad you can't always be on holiday because then we get more blog posts.

  4. Hey Carol, you know sometimes I just wanted to take a bike and bring along my two dogs but how can I manage haha. The photos are very interesting...what is anthromorpism? Did I spelt it right? I asked because I think I am sometimes like that. Everytime BJ on your header appears of my screen it reminds of me Scott, how I love black dogs? Have you seen new black lab?


  5. Thanks for the comments, everyone:)

    Jean, if we are both right about Mama Osprey, she is one very assertive lady.

    Anna, I am just wondering if there is a way to avoid the eye glow in night shots. Maybe a topic for your next post:)

    Bill, it's a deal. And yes, holidays are definitely blog supportive:)

    Al, I have seen Oreo. Beautiful dog!

    Yes, it's a bit tougher to take more than one dog along on bike rides:)

    "Anthropomorphism" is attributing human feelings to animals. Scientists believe that is a big mistake. For example, a scientist would say that a dog can feel emotions like sadness or happiness, but they don't believe it can feel thoughts like revenge, guilt, jealousy etc.

  6. Hey Carol try shooting at different angles, avoid direct flash with the eyes, they are like mirrors. I practice this with the mirror. Hope it helps. Anna :)

  7. Anna, thank you:) I will try your suggestion for sure.

  8. Theres beaver in Vancouver? Huh? Really? lol
    In all my time I only saw one and it was at Stanley Park. Did it escape?