Friday, December 7, 2012

Skywatch Friday, Season 6, Episode 22

If you were to ask people in Vancouver, B.C. what the weather has been like lately, most would answer that it has been quite dismal.  However, for those of us lucky enough to be able to head outside when the sun strikes, there have been some exquisite skies.

Last Tuesday, it was dark for most of the day, but in the early afternoon, a light drew me outside.  At first, it was just a path across False Creek.

A seagull caught the beam..

as did Black Jack.

The subtle colours in her coat brought a little thrill of pleasure..

and then that same light caught an under-sheen in this Bushtit.  I had a feeling that something special was coming..

and I was right.  Suddenly, over the Cambie Bridge, I saw the rainbow.  Although I had only my 300 mm lens with me and couldn't get all of the rainbow in one shot,

it still caught enough to preserve the memory. 

I've learned that rainbows don't give you much time.  Definitely not enough to run home for a smaller lens.  I backed up as far as I could and tried to show its long reach upward.
A car on the Cambie Bridge picked up a little of the green.  I wondered if the driver noticed.

The buildings and trees under the bridge were transformed as well.

Then I noticed a very faint second rainbow.  I wanted to voice my pleasure to the world, perhaps not as passionately as this fellow but still, there was a feeling that people around me were missing it.  I satisfied myself with upping the saturation so you can see both rainbows, and I do confess to telling one little girl (she was waiting outside Starbucks for her mom and later, I saw both of them enjoying it) and three guys in a Hydro truck.  They got out their iphones and took some shots, so I guess that was my good-news message for the day :)

This fellow on the bridge was too far to reach.  I hope he noticed.  I thought he looked like he could use a bit of a lift.

I'm pretty sure the bushtit noticed.  It was chirping away quite lustily.

Yesterday was another of those dull days that turned out to have some lovely skies for an hour or so before sunset.  I headed out with Black Jack and as we walked toward the Burrard Bridge, I could see pastel shades between its towers.  

As we passed the tower on the right, it seemed a painting had emerged in front of us.

In the distance, one opening in the sky yielded most of the light.  My photo didn't do the mountains and billowing clouds justice, but several people had their cameras out, and I knew I wasn't alone in my appreciation of the moment.

As I watched, the pastel shades..

became a little richer, and this view through Bernar Venet's 217.4 Arc X 13 was perhaps my favourite of the day.  That link will give you a lot more information about the sculpture, but I will just put one small quote here for those of you with little time for links.
"The titles of these solid steel sculptures, including that of the present 217.4 Arc X 13 provide an exact description of the sculpture's mathematically determined composition. ... They begin and end at different degrees on the imaginary circumference, their gyroscopic motion bringing the near realization of the circle which the sculptor has left incomplete."
What I have noticed about this sculpture is not its mathematical properties, but rather the enjoyment of adults and children alike who play in and around it.  

Perhaps the rest of these photos..  

taken during our walk home..

need little commentary.

Here, a little sweep of light..

and here, a meeting of the trees, were just about the end of the lovely show.

My last photo before supper was of this palm tree on Beach Street.  I thought it had mathematical properties of its own, although articulating details of that are impossible :)
Good food, conversation with Bill and an evening walk to check out the trees in George Wainborn Park were the perfect conclusion to the day.   

Bill stood by the tallest tree to give you a sense of perspective.  Thanks, dear Bill, and thank you, much appreciated blog readers (I know I say that often, but it is seriously true), for letting me share my skies and other happy moments.  For more skies around the world, check out the amazing blog meme, Skywatch Friday.  


  1. the trees silhouetted against that swoopy sky are perfect. and the rainbows are beautiful. little black jack steals the show, though, with that sweet face!

  2. The sculpture (perhaps because of the mood of this post) looks to me like a great big smile in your photo. As you say, there is a cheering light to be found amid dismal days and even rainbows to be caught. Thanks as always for sharing these bright moments of your day. :)

  3. Hi Carol, I so enjoy all your photos especially the ones of birds and of course Black Jack. You didn't read about my departing for Kauai because I deliberately don't advertise when we are going away - safety reasons. We have been back about a week now. I hope to post some photos soon, but since we have been going over there quite frequently and I have posted many photos before, there will not be too many scenic shots. My sister who was with us for the first time took quite a lot. Her blog is I have written it all out in words because I think blogger removes e mails in comments.

  4. That second photo of Black Jack is priceless!!

  5. Hi there - thanks for the comment on my blog - I think I'm trying to take more than "just" pictures of the sky - I love sunset shots (and rainbows!) - but I want to see what else I can come up with as well.

    But of course, this does not mean I wont still post classic orange sunset skies!

    I was drawn to the picture of the hotel script by it graphic nature - sort of sky writing!

    Cheers - Stewart M - Melbourne

  6. Hi Carol. I have some 'catching up to do here...
    This was a wonderful walk around a very familiar neighbourhood...we lived at First and Maple in Kits and took the Burrard Bridge daily.
    I know what you mean to take advantage of the 'light' when it became available in Vancouver.
    And you have certainly done it perfectly here! My goodness what beautiful captures of that rainbow(s) and the commentary was full of restrained excitement....that fellow you linked to was how I wish I could be when seeing something beautiful nature throws at me! What a spirit!

    I really feel I just had a walk in Vancouver again. I know it has changed since 1981 but it is essentially the same.
    A great weekend ahead for you, Bill and Blackjack.

  7. Beautiful pictures! And a most interesting sculpture. Sort looks like the hull of a boat.