Thursday, June 19, 2014

Yaletown - open fences and open hearts.

I am sharing this post with a fine meme called Good Fences.  Thank you to TexWisGirl for hosting it.  There are three main parts to the post, one about Paul Dragan, the next about fences and the last about Modus Operandi dance initiative.

Paul Dragan and the people of Yaletown
Yaletown reeled nine days ago when Paul Dragan, bicycle shop owner, pillar of the community and all-round good guy, was shot and very seriously wounded by a mentally unstable ex-employee.  I blogged about it here.  He remains in intensive care but he has wiggled his fingers and toes, joked with his family and called to speak with his staff at his work place.  His injuries were devastating but the quick thinking of a retired doctor who happened to be very nearby and the determined efforts and skills of emergency staff at the hospital brought him back from the brink of death.  For more details, you can read here about his call to his wife to tell her he loved her just an hour before the shooting, and here, about the town gathering yesterday to show love for Paul and to affirm that this is a peaceful community that will go on celebrating the spirit of open energy that, I'm realizing only now, is vital to its sense of well-being.

Below, just a few of the people lined up to show their support for Paul. 
 These musicians provided enjoyable and lively music..
 and there were art projects for the children.
 I was struck, as always, with the way Black Jack reaches out to strangers who..
 begin to feel like old friends.  This young father stops just about every time he sees Black Jack.  I can't tell you his name but I sure can feel his warm nature and kind heart.
Annetter O'Shea, Business Improvement Association executive director, organized the making of this enormous card..
 that people signed.
 There was a little dancing..
 and a lot of.. 
This is Ryan.  He and all of the staff at the bicycle shop have kept things going even as they tried to deal with their own grief.  I have stopped by a few times and seen the sadness in their eyes but also their determination to carry on for Paul.  I will keep you updated on this story.  For now, I just needed to share my feeling of gratitude for the people in my community.
After stopping by the b-b-q gathering and the bike shop, Bill and I walked through Yaletown. We had lattés at Harrison Galleries and did 99.9% of a crossword puzzle.  Then we stopped by Chintz where I took a photo of my handsome Bill and some orange flowers.
As always, some flowers..
 and buildings (I like this one for the way it evokes the hard-working history of the area)..
 my eye.
So did the show of "yellow" that appeared.. 
 all around town..
 at businesses..
 wanting to show their support for Paul Dragan.
Bill took this photo.  You had to be there, but it was one of many happy moments in the day.

 Fences for TexWisGirl
It occurred to me that we are encouraged.. 
to reach out..
 and touch..
the worlds..  
 the fences in Yaletown.
This fence welcomes us to The Roundhouse area.  The birds and trees rest on it, we bike through it and walk through it and meet people behind it.  My idea of the perfect fence :)  Thank you so much to TexWis for her friendly meme and warm heart too.  It would be well worth your time to get to know her and the fences her readers love to share.  

I have posted about Tiffany Tregarthen and David Rayond a few times.  They are about 2/3 of the way down this very long post.  I am out of time this morning, so have to make quick work of expressing my gratitude for the performance by students in their education initiative called Modus Operandi.  We attended their students' final performance of the term last night.  Just before the performance, Tiffany saw us waiting in line, welcomed us and gave us some postcard photos with information that I hope to share in more detail.  This one speaks, I think to the sense of community that struck me with such comfort yesterday. I photographed the photo by laying it on a coffee table that I am just beginning to appreciate.  It belonged to Bill's mother.  The faces over the photograph struck me this morning.  I hope to find out more about the table and its history soon.
What I sensed last night as I watched the dancers..
 was not only their fine technical skills..
 and extraordinary energy..
 but something else..  something intangible.. something greater than dance itself.
 The mark of fine teachers..
 was felt last night.  I have seen these dancers a few times and they have grown.
 They have done it together..
 while exploring laughter and tears and just about every emotion in between.
 I felt Tiffany and David's influence, but it was a gentle touch, 
leaving the spirit of these youth to emerge with all the discipline and technique they could ever want, but without the constraints that have concerned me in some of the classical groups I've watched.
 There is joy and pride and friendship..
 and love in their faces.  I came home feeling enriched and energized.  My thanks goes to each one of them.  It goes to you as well.  The time you give me to share my thoughts is valued so very much.


  1. hooray! i could load it now. i read it before in feedly, but couldn't get the post to open in order to comment. i do like all the blooms growing along those fences! great dance troupe. and sweet outpouring of support for paul. i hope he can fully recover. just melted on the photos of black jack and the gent that stops to see her. :)

  2. Wow, what a collection of great photos! Very nice, and enjoyable to see.

  3. I was so happy to read the update on Paul Dragan's condition and I was touched by the community support that has emerged from this tragedy.
    I loved the photos of BJ sharing her enormous love. I was captivated by the photos of the white flowers that seemed to reach out from behind that lovely fence. I'm also happy to know that Bill is taking his place behind the camera from time to time. I wonder if you were meant to model in front of those flowers??

  4. love the flowers with the fence around them.

  5. Wow, what a collection of great photos! Nice Blog..Thanks for sharing it..
    orange media studio

  6. Once again a spectacular collection of photos. That dancing performance looks amazing. Such talent they have!! Wow. If I tried that I would sprain an ankle. Happy Friday!!

  7. Thank you so very much for such a touching message, generous words and beautiful photos. With much appreciation for you and your support from Modus Operandi and Out Innerspace. xo David and Tiffany