Friday, September 14, 2012

Jean's World

It has taken me a few days to process the memories after our eventful week on Salt Spring Island.  Walks and talks and wildlife and culture and perfect weather and "salt of the earth" good people slip in and out of my thoughts.  A visit to Jean's world (award-winning writer and photographer for My Life with the Critters) is jumping the cue, but I will come back to catch up on Raven's world (previously shown here and here), hikes with Bill and Black Jack at Mount Maxwell and Ruckle Provincial Park, ferry rides and other fun soon.

Jean's colourful humour, her say-it-like-it-is personality, her critters, her family and her friends all reflect, I think, nature's blues and greens and pastels, but with liberal splashes of red and gold thrown in for good measure.  A metaphor for the way she lives, those vivid accents inhabit her surroundings and make their way into the hearts and minds of all who come to know her. I guess I sensed this the first time I read her blog (maybe about five years ago), because I have been coming back for more ever since. 

Jean's backyard was familiar and new at the same time.  I had seen photographs and read posts about it, but nothing replaces standing in the middle of its bright energy.

Her much-loved patio table, one that I had admired in photographs when she bought it (maybe two or three years ago?), was every bit as warm and friendly as I expected it to be.  Beautifully framed by her red and yellow flowers, it was a work of art.

We decided to walk at Osborne Bay Park,

and that was a great choice (of many nearby walks that Jean can choose from).

This, and the next, are my two favourite photographs of our visit.  I loved meeting Eddie (he's such a sweetie) and was thrilled to see how he is responding to Jean's love and excellent care. Jean has rescued more critters than I (or, I suspect, she) can count, but she is taking a much-deserved break right now to shower all of her attention on Eddie and Ollie (her cat that i could only see through the screen door because a certain little black dog who shall remain nameless but her colour is a hint thinks cats were put in this world to develop her chasing skills).

Isn't Eddie gorgeous?
This family of river otters that Jean spotted as we sat enjoying the beach sure had me excited, but I apologize for the quality of the photos.  Even my big lens was challenged, but if you strain your eyes, I think you will see a smile on the one at the left.

There were quite a few little "bumps" in the water, and I was never sure how many we were seeing.  My guess is that there may have been five.  I do believe the one in the middle is showing off its fish.

They continued travelling away from us, and were quite a long way down the beach before they decided to come up on land.  I followed as quickly as I could, but they weren't really enthusiastic about posing.  Through the branches of two huge logs on the beach, my camera managed to pick up this shot.  The otters were under a sort of log dock, and the minute they sensed my presence, this one (maybe Mama?) stood up..

.. and then led the others back to the ocean and away from us.  Bye-bye, dear otters.  It sure was a thrill to see you, even if from a distance.  I don't know how you arranged it, Jean, but that was the icing on a delicious walk.

These last two photos, taken as we walked back to Crofton are proof that Jean carries her "golden" light around with her.

I completely missed the exposure setting on this one, but love the "full-steam-ahead" action in Black Jack's gait.  She, Bill and I really enjoyed our visit.  Who knew, when I started blogging, that it would lead to meeting such colourful and entertaining friends. 

You can read Jean's version of our visit here and check out some of her winning photography here.  Our thanks again, Jean, for taking time out of your busy life to show us your beautiful world.  For more posts reflecting the lives of people all around the world, I hope you will take a few minutes to read the meme, Our World Tuesday.


  1. i like the colors in the garden on the 2nd shot. and her pup is beautiful. cool to see the otters!

  2. Hi Carol! Thanks for describing our visit so wonderfully, and I was thrilled the otters came to entertain you. I'm also happy to see that you made it to Ruckle Park - one of my favourite places in the whole world - and look forward to seeing your posts on it, Raven's world, and your other adventures last week.

  3. What a treat to see those otters. Well done for capturing them at all. I think I would have been so captivated I would have forgotten to use the camera.

  4. I like all the colours in Jean’s world, including that vibrant patio table. How neat that you got to visit her after all this time in her home surroundings. Eddie the dog is so cute and lucky to have found such a caring individual. Now that you’ve introduced us I will be visiting her blog. :)

  5. Sounds and looks like you had a great visit. It's so much fun to meet and see people you read about all the time. - Margy

  6. Thanks for sharing your visit to Salt Spring. The gulf islands are truly a unique experience.