In a recent post I showed a couple of photos from a visit to the Biodiversity Museum at the University of B.C. Here are a few more from that day, each with a memory or moment that lifts me up when I look back. I guess they could be called uplifting memories.
Black Jack and I walked south on the right side of the Burrard Bridge on the way to meet Bill. It was a cloudy day with rain threatening. Not the best to show off the bridge, but the feeling of unreserved familiarity after years of bicycle commutes returns every time I travel over it.
This photo (taken in pre-retirement days) gives a better idea of the art deco style that the architect, George Lister, chose for the concrete towers. There is a bust of Captain George Vancouver on one side (with a V under it) and Sir Harry Burrard-Neale on the other (with a B under it). The Museum of Vancouver web site shows a photo of people gathered on the Burrard the day it opened (July 1, 1932). My uppermost thought on seeing a cyclist in the crowd was to wonder if he was perhaps the first person ever to ride his bike over the bridge.
Below is a shot taken one night several years ago as I traveled home from work. I can just make out the "B" under Sir Harry Burrard-Neale. He appears unruffled by his lofty position.
Looking over the hedge and through to Kits Beach, these two trees formed an unconventional archway.
These utterly unique flowers were in front of a house a few blocks further on, and also outside a fence. I had never seen anything quite like them.
A bit further on, Cornwall Street turns into Point Grey Road, and it was there that I noticed this rose resting against a garage wall. It seemed to utter these words: "I, alone, survived."
Here, the elephant is at the head of a line of evergreens ushering the way to the ocean.
This useful mirror in the hedge helps drivers back safely onto Point Grey Road. I thought it would be a fun way to show the road, and then noticed Black Jack and I were in it too.
Even with rain threatening, there was an unassuming and subtle beauty in the muted colours around the pond at Jericho Park.
Two crows greeted us near the entrance to the park. They urged me to share a few of Black Jack's treats with them.
I knew Black Jack's unbridled energy would not bode well for a squirrel on the other side of this fence. I had to restrain her, but there was something endearingly helpless in the gesture of her front paws.
Bill met us at the park and we drove to UBC to visit the Biodiversity Museum. We left Black Jack in the truck and Bill unselfishly offered her his down jacket. She was curled up in it as warm as toast when we returned.
I was grateful for the mauve patterns and tree reflections in this campus building and for the architects who add unique touches to their work.
In the museum, many aisles like this one had beautiful displays and drawers to investigate. The colours were inviting and the seemingly unlimited quantity of specimens made me feel like I was unearthing a treasure chest of goodies.
I have mixed feelings about these next three photos, loving the opportunity to see this cougar's head and to observe the hinged action of its jaw and the fitting together of its upper and lower teeth, but definitely maintaining a healthy respect for cougars. That is to say they scare me :) I am unsure that this one died of old age, but like to think that may have been the case. You can see a little of our guide's face here. He was knowledgeable and friendly and one could tell that his work is a labour of love. We could have wandered about on our own rather than taking the tour but for this first visit, it was good to have a guide.
After leaving the museum, Bill and I had tostadas at Salsa and Agave (mentioned in a previous post) but I hadn't shown you these two photos that I took in the restaurant. They were just lights hanging from the ceiling but we were going out moon-chasing after our meal, and I thought if we were unsuccessful, these could be the stand-in.
This light was on the wall. I know it's not a moon, but perhaps the umber hues will send some warm cheer into your day as they did mine.
The display in front of St. Paul's Hospital, noticed as we drove along Burrard Street after supper, was another pick-me-up moment.
In preparing this post, I went to a link to learn a bit more about these Lights of Hope.
While at that site, I randomly clicked on this uplifting video and listened to a 23-year-old mother who would not be here today, had it not been for St. Paul's.
That concludes my photos for this "U" post. As always, I like to include one artist and one musician previously unknown to me. Somehow, I came across Jim Unger, a cartoonist and as this site explains, a person who had a natural ability to make people laugh. Of course, I knew his work but I had never really stopped to think about the person behind "Herman." Jim Unger died about six months ago in Victoria. It was inspiring to learn that, two days before he died, he wrote seven more cartoon gags.
There are lots of examples of his work on line; here's one that made me laugh:
Lastly, Chinary Ung is a composer born in Cambodia. He teaches at the University of California, San Diego. The opportunity to study in the U.S. almost definitely saved his life. Three brothers and a sister weren't so fortunate, all four dying at the hands of the Khmer Rouge. Bill's sister, Phyllis, and her husband are presently on a trip that includes Vietnam, Thailand and Cambodia. They visited the Killing Fields and have been deeply affected by that. It seemed prophetic that Chinary Ung came up in my search for a "U" musician for this post. As this article states, "Ung has spent a lifetime looking into his heart, considering his circumstances and contemplating the fragile nature of life." You can hear Mr. Ung and his wife talk with a group of middle-school students at this link.
Thank you for stopping by my blog today. For other "U" words and themes from around the world, perhaps you will find time to stop by the ABC Wednesday blog meme.