Sunday, October 14, 2012

Weekend Reflections

I'm making a contribution to Weekend Reflections blog meme for the first time and also adding some thoughts about giving thanks. First, the reflection photos: 

Autumn leaves along False Creek in Vancouver, BC.

The Granville Bridge at night, seen while walking with Bill after a Thanksgiving meal.
Along False Creek, a day or two earlier, as the sunset wound down.
 And, I'm a week late, but It feels important to express some recent "thank-you" reflections after the Thanksgiving holiday.  
Times with Bill that made me smile
He and Black Jack communing at Lynn Canyon Park

Posing for me (yet again!) by False Creek on Sunday evening of the Thanksgiving weekend.  

Note: someone asked how False Creek got its name, and here finally is a little information that I found at this site:
False Creek is not actually a creek, but more like a shallow inlet from the ocean that separates downtown Vancouver from the rest of the city. The name "False Creek" was given to this body of water by Captain George Richards in 1859, before Vancouver even existed.

Writes author Catherine Gourley, "On entering the creek he expected to discover a water link to coal deposits he had noticed in Burrard Inlet. When he met a dead end he gave the basin the mundane name of False Creek. "

The shores of False Creek were used for industrial purposes during the first century of Vancouver's existance, however, industry has slowed since the 1970's, and the land has been turned into popular residential and commercial neighbourhoods, including the famous Vancouver attraction, Granville Island.

False Creek is surrounded by a man-made wall - the sea wall, as it's known... which makes for a very scenic and peaceful route for walking, cycling or rollerblading. 
Trying to give a deer an escape route, thinking that it might be trapped on the Salt Spring property.  In fact, the deer refused to cooperate and we haven't seen it since.  

We're still wondering if it remains in a hiding spot or whether it has a secret enter/exit point.  It was inside the fenced area early that morning, and we caught a fleeting glance a bit later on, but then it disappeared, although not by either of Bill's two planned escape routes.

People and animals often feel Bill's magnetism.  When we arrived at Sunset Farm Studio on Salt Spring Island a few days ago, first the cat and then the goat found his "magic" hands.

Not only going along with my "Autumn Leaf" photo idea, but embellishing the humour. 

Times with Black Jack that made me smile
During an early morning walk at Salt Spring, she barely noticed my attempt to make a size comparison.  She was focused on a sound or smell just ahead.

Sitting in Bill's hand as though in an easy chair, confident that this privilege was her right.
Still in Bill's hand, and still completely trusting, but eyes bugging out at some distant attraction I can't detect.  I laughed so much at her expression, I could barely focus.
 Nature sightings within a 10-minute walk of my apartment
A seagull enjoying the afternoon sun.

A starling searching for breakfast along False Creek.

A young seagull calling and calling its mother, and finally taking a bit of a leap from the.. 

top of  a high-rise.

With determination in its eyes,

it belly-flopped to a landing beside her, but sadly, was ignored.  What a hard lesson for many juvenile birds to accept the gradual cut-off of free handouts.

A House Finch in a tree outside my window.  I hadn't seen one there for ages.

A funny expression on the face of a False Creek cormorant when it turned to eye my camera inspired some laughter.  I also enjoyed the light on its wings.

A crow eating berries in David Lam Park.  

A King Fisher at the marina near my apartment.  As with the House Finch, regular sightings had stopped sometime before Summer arrived, and I was happy to see its return.

A young male mallard, still working on his emerald green markings.

An American Coot with glistening, red eyes.

The same crow, perhaps?  This time, I had my big lens with me.

Birds and Critters seen on Salt Spring Island
A few days with Raven at Salt Spring yielded lots of wildlife and farm life sightings.  I didn't get photos of this, but I felt happy and thankful each time Black Jack raced to greet Raven.  In just a few visits, they have developed quite a bond.

Hummingbird at the feeder.

A well-fed Dark-eyed Junco looking rather like a cigar-smoking gangster.

An elusive Nuthatch that finally perched for long enough to get a fuzzy photo.

A hen wandering across the road in search of food.  I learned that many farm critters on Salt Spring enjoy the truest version of a free-range life.  Hm... I could swear she was raising her eyebrows at us.

Her mate, perhaps?  He was behind the fence but keeping a close watch.

This pony was enjoying a good feed on the neighbouring property to Sunset Farm Studio, but allowed me some "nuzzle" time before returning to the business at hand.

We didn't stay long at the sheep farm.  The freezer full of lamb and the sheepskins definitely conflicted with my vegan lifestyle, but I did appreciate the cat's obviously happy life and the many soft beds at its disposal.

These pygmy goats appeared to be happy as well.  

They had a huge field, were very friendly and certainly seemed well-fed.

Still, the "greener grass" on the other side of the fence seemed attractive.

I have a really hard time with the idea of killing any animal, but if they must die to feed and clothe us, it was comforting to me that all of the animals in the area appeared to be living a good life.  The sheep below had a huge field that I tried to capture through the truck window.

Creative Vancouverites
It was Bill who saw the ad for a free concert at The Roundhouse Community Centre (half a minute from my apartment) and suggested a last minute change of plan so we could see what it was all about.  To quote the program: "Drones/Revelations (by Richard Reed Parry) is a multi-channel moving surround sound composition for synthesizer, choir, string ensemble and french horn.  Its primary inspiration is the military's increasing use of pilotless drone planes (UAB's/Unmanned Aerial Vehicles), and contains sung text taken from the King James' Book of Revelation._ _ _ It is performed as a 25-minute choreography by a large group of bicyclists in a dark room with speakers mounted on each bicycle, each speaker broadcasting a different element of the composition as they ride, encircling the audience." I will not say it was an unqualified success, but, in my opinion, it came close to working. It inspired some thoughts about how it might have been more successful, and mostly, I was just thankful that Bill suggested going, and that Richard Parry was given the space and opportunity to realize his ideas.  We also heard "Express Your Voice" under the direction of DB Boyko.  The blurb about this course (offered once a week) said, "Lead by a professional singer, composer and musician, we create sound, sing, and listen deeply as we delve into the world of vocal expression. Participants will shape this project together as they follow their own interests in a creative and collaborative choir." This was also, I felt, a work in progress with enormous potential to be brilliant.  Seniors brought together once a week at the local community centre improvising avant-garde music ..  a concept that continues to play through my mind.  

The Moment of Forgetting was also an innovative and thought-provoking performance.  Accomplished musicians (flute, violin, viola, double bass) performed while simultaneously  following dancers about the floor in an attempt to portray the experience of losing one's memory.  Difficult to do..  some said impossible..  but there was courage and determination in the carrying out of these ideas.  The performance did not keep me fully engaged..  I think the germ of the idea will take hold and evolve, but young minds are being encouraged to develop outside traditional moulds and who knows where their ideas may take us.  

I noticed this lady doing a head stand, and then saw her dog, as we walked toward Granville Island.  I love it that she was able to express her mood so freely.  The dog looked happy too.

Vancouver's Autumn Colours
Just past the Emily Carr Art Studio at Granville Island, I spotted these.

They seemed to get brighter as I got closer.

Near David Lam Park.  I liked the layers of wall, hedge, trees and building.

Every year, I do at least one shot of Sumac leaves in their Autumn colours.

A brilliant tree on the West Georgia side of the seawall.

Bright berries.

A sunset over False Creek..  not brilliant..  but there seemed to be a spotlight on the little gathering of trees near the centre.

The fallen leaf that we used as a prop for Black Jack's photos.  There appeared to be a map on it.

I rose very early, hoping to catch a sunrise.  That wasn't to be, but I loved the mist over the trees.

Taken through the truck window.

Not sure what the yellow flowers were, but we both loved this scene.

Back in the town of Ganges after our drive to Sunset Farm.  I liked the stain glass windows and Autumn colours.  

I don't know.  Could those be reflections on the centre leaves?  Or shadows?  Whatever they were, I liked the picture.  For more reflection photos from around the world, do take time to check out the "Weekend Reflections" site.  Thank you so much for stopping by!


  1. A grand series of photographs! Very productive outings filled with romance and good times with those that matter most. :)

  2. Chickens and farm animals make the nicest pictures, don’t they? I also think your “mist over trees” along the bending road would make a great West Coast greeting card. And I like all the little leaf shadows reflected on the surrounding leaves of the last photo. About the play: It is encouraging when an artist is willing to tackle the harsh realities of life such as those unmanned drones that we in the west mostly try to ignore.

  3. your bridge reflection shot is stellar! the photos of blackjack made me smile. bill is a kind soul, for sure. the fall colors are lovely - thanks for sharing them!

  4. Just stopping by to say hello, great blog.

  5. Absolutely gorgeous reflections!

  6. Carol, these are incredible shots and subjects!!! LOVE the heron/crane/stork photo!! I really enjoy what you see.