Monday, July 14, 2014

Blue Connections

This blue flower (cornflower?) was growing between rocks at the edge of False Creek.  I noticed it yesterday and thought it would fit nicely in Smiling Sally's Blue Monday meme.
Bill and I are not huge sports fans but we watched the final World Cup Soccer game between Germany and Argentina with interest yesterday.  As the writer of this article states, the two teams were well-matched.  Argentina's blue uniform was handy for this post :) but my biggest interest rested with a detail that Bill told me about Leo Messi.  At age eleven, he began a three year treatment to counteract a growth-hormone deficiency.  In this article, Messi is quoted: "Every night I had to stick a needle into my legs, night after night after night, every day of the week, and this over a period of three years.”  There were many more struggles in his life to get him to the point of being considered by many to be one of the best players in the world.  I admit my heart ached for him when they lost yesterday,  
but I was really happy for Germany at the same time.  They earned the win, fair and square.  When we went for a coffee shortly after the game, it was fun to see some people celebrating.  I was across the street, but they saw my camera and gave a little wave for the photo.  No blue in the German flag colours, but the fellow on the right added just a touch :)
Bill had a special connection to the German team; his grandparents emigrated from Germany to East Russia to farm the land in an arrangement that still considered them German citizens.  His father is shown as a young boy with his parents on the left, and on the right, as a man in his 20's.  I'm not sure of the exact date when he left Czarist Russia for Canada, but I hope Bill and I and his sister can explore some of the stories together.  I've included a summary (found at this siteunder the photo of related historical events between 1871 and 1923.  The last sentence is in bold, because it is such a sobering thought.   
1871 The Imperial Russian government repeals the manifestos of Catherine the Great and Alexander I. The German colonists were to lose their special status and privileges and become subject to Russian military service after a ten-year grace period.

1872-1873 Several groups emigrate from the Odessa area to Nebraska and the Dakotas. Scouts from other Black Sea colonies and the Volga colonies investigate opportunities in America.

1874 The Imperial Russian government amends the 187l decree and institutes compulsory military conscription of German colonists immediately.

1874-1914 Thousands of German colonists emigrate from Russia to North and South America.

1914 The First World War begins.

1917 Political unrest in Russia leads to two revolutions and the beginning of Soviet communist rule.

1919 The United States government enacts strict immigration laws which greatly slow the tide of immigrants. Canada continues to receive German immigrants from Russia.

1920-1923 Famine in Russia. Over l50 thousand Volga Germans die of starvation.

We continued along Homer Street to Harrison Galleries where we enjoyed the art and their wonderful lattés at their café.  I noticed the blue sign to the café.  On the other side, they.
had drawn an inviting (blue-bordered) glass with dancing ice cubes to entice those wanting to escape the heat.  With so much valuable art displayed, the temperature is always comfortable at Harrison's and it felt especially good to be there yesterday.  Afterwards, 
I kept an eye out for blue around us.  Bill noticed the fairly large gathering of policemen at JJ's Coffee House on Davie Street, just across from their car.  I thought of Fundy Blue and her story about a photo that got her into a bit of trouble.  Fortunately, the police either didn't notice me, or didn't mind..
my photos of what I thought was some very nice blue content.
I thought the sky deserved mention as well, especially since I saw a gentleman looking down on us.   Though some might disagree, I think he has a friendly demeanour.
As we arrived home, this machine on the corner of our street reminded me that blue is everywhere we look.  Fortunately, the workers had taken a break for the weekend, but they are hard at it again this morning.  I'm hoping they will finish their job soon!
On the steps of our building, a young Chick-a-dee appeared to be recently fledged.  It seems  to have blue legs.  That officially ends my blue content for this post, though some will appear in our evening walk, marked by an extraordinarily high tide, a beautiful encounter with Tupper, and a fun conversation with the owner of a '56 Chevy.
That's Bill's hand you see with dear Tupper.
She followed us at a running pace across the field (why didn't she fly?),
before settling beside Bill.  I was sitting on the same cement wall with my big lens.  Tupper ran back and forth between us.  When the treats in Bill's hand were gone, she headed to me.  When mine were gone, back she went to Bill.  
When they were all gone (small salmon pellets), she had a drink from False Creek.
The water had continued to rise over the steps and almost to my feet.  
This cyclist looks like he's.. 
biking on water,
and he is :)
At the top of the steps, this fellow was taking a "selfie" of his foot.  I just couldn't resist the photo, and as Bill noted, there was blue content.
Tupper watched from her spot on the rock, and I imagine..
she must have been amused by the happy people, 
excited to walk along the cement landing, shoes on or off, splashing to their heart's content.
Black Jack thought it was pretty neat too, 
but Bill's feet, just to her left, managed to find the last bit of dry pavement (wish I had the photo, but my big lens missed it).
I wonder what Tupper thinks sometimes.  She has so many skills that leave humans in the dust (well, the water).
She flew to the top of this transparent roof over the lookout, 
and proceeded to delight me with her curious expressions, 
as she watched us..
I stood directly beneath her to get this shot.  I don't know how many of you have seen the details in a seagull's foot this closely before, but I can tell you I was thrilled to have been given such a special opportunity.  
She flew to the other side of the roof when another seagull (a suitor, I think) arrived.
Here, she gave a silent yawn, in keeping with what I have interpreted (perhaps incorrectly), as general indifference to the suitors who have shown interest.
One last shot of her.  Come back soon, Tupper.  We love your visits!
I still had blue on my mind when I took these nearby flowers..
and these water reflections.
Bill's eyes lit up when he spotted this '56 Chevy.  He remembered his high school days..
and the dream every boy in his class had to own one.  The next year, with the huge tail fins,
just wasn't the same.  The driver noticed my camera, and made another trip..
around the turn-around, just so I could get the photo.  More green than blue, perhaps, but what a fun encounter!
We started reading Gary Shteyngart's Little Failure after our walk.  I have to admit that my head nodded more than once, and it wasn't Bill's reading that was to blame.  There were inklings of some "good stuff" to come though, so we'll stick with it for a while to see if it grows on us.  I took this last photo of the day around 11:00 p.m.  Just the dying colours of what had been a spectacular day.  For lots more blues, head over to Smiling Sally's Blue Monday meme.  Thanks for stopping by here. I hope you have a great Monday in whatever colour makes you happy :)


  1. Blue cornflower is one of my favorites,lovley.Succer is not my favorite beut my husbund and my son was watching.We are now on holiday att our island.Nice old car.Tupper is a lovley one ,have a nice day ,nette

  2. Beautiful Blues. The water reflections shot was really cool. Lots of beautiful Blues.
    Thanks for sharing. And many thanks for coming by my Happy Blue post. Our prayers are answered. Now we just have 'fallout'. But we're Blessed. Thank you for your kind words and continued prayers.

  3. Hi Carol,

    You certainly prove that blue is all around us. This post is filled with blues! My favorite is the 1956 teal blue Chevrolet Bel Air 2-door convertible. I remember those cars and the fun rides I had in them.

    I appreciated Tupper's feet; what a great shot!

    Isn’t it fun finding blues to share? Thanks for playing today.

    Happy Blue Monday!

  4. tupper's so cute. love the feet shots. :)

  5. Oh my goodness … those shots of the soles of Tupper’s webbed feet are awesome. Don’t think there is anything like it anywhere. And the one foot grasping the wire when landing is another rare shot. Tupper is becoming more and more of a pet and model with personality plus.

  6. Such an interesting blog! Tupper is a darling. So nice she is a 'free' pet. Black Jack looks so much like my childhood dog, Rip only I think Rip was a little larger. Did you know Tupper is actually a Herring Gull? The red spot on her beak says so. At least that's what we called them when I lived in England and studied British birds for a while.

  7. Wow! Lots of terrific blues! Love all the photos you shared. Greta shots! Have a beautiful week and thanks for sharing.

  8. I love the shots of Tupper taken through the transparent surface - especially the ones of the feet!

  9. Tupper is becoming a good friend of all your BBB fans! Of course, I love it best when I get to see pictures of you and Bill!!! Phyllis