Yesterday was one of those days when Vancouverites slipped out for some sunshine and play time. We do that here. Though the weather has come nothing close to the days and days of dismal, depressing, miserable rain that people warned me about as I planned my move here, there seems to be a "go outside whenever you can" mentality that is perhaps linked to the past. I am well aware of the devastating affects of climate change, and do feel guilty, sometimes, for loving the climate in Vancouver, but truthfully, it works well for us. Not too hot, not too cold, not too wet, not too dry.. just right.
Here is the day as it unfolded for me yesterday. I will post it to Sundays in My City, with many thanks to Unknown Mami for hosting.
I took these photos in the park across from our apartment yesterday.Quite a cross-section of humanity.. (yes, the front of that guitar was painted green)
and I could swear there wasn't an unhappy face in the crowd.
I watched this photographer on the dock below me.
I do love to see passionate photographers..
and it was clear to me that he was fully engrossed in capturing his very expressive subject.
The lengths some will go to to get that perfect portrait.
I tried to get my camera out quickly enough to take photos, planning to check with them afterwards so that they could see how they looked from my perspective. But, they finished their session and walked up to the level where I was standing. Here's the best part of this story. I told them I had loved watching their interaction and had tried but missed out on getting photos. I don't normally ask favours of strangers (I'm actually a tad shy about such things) but something made me ask them to recreate the moment. I couldn't believe it when they agreed! So, back down the steps they went to do this little reenactment. I was delighted, though my exposure was way too dark (I've used shadow reduction to lighten them) and I couldn't bring myself to ask them to pose again. Still, I love the photos for the warmth and energy and just plain goodwill in them.
As I waited for the two gentlemen to come back up the steps, a lady passed, with her little dog, Molly. The lady remembered me from a previous encounter. She had admired Black Jack at that time, and was thrilled to show off her new dog, Molly. Molly didn't give me much of a chance to catch a shot of her..
but tossed her little ears with wonderful attitude. I have a feeling you have lucked into a very happy life, Molly!
The gentlemen arrived at the top of the steps just as Molly was about to leave. I loved the saxophone earrings and learned they were the result of a happy experience in a school band. I asked for one more photo and though I didn't catch the saxophones all that well, I thought the feeling of a good day came through beautifully in the young man's expression.
Molly had continued on, but turned to look back and I caught one more shot of her.
A few steps further on, I came upon another small dog having a great day with her humans. They gave me permission to take photos and even continued to run a bit more just for the camera. This time, I was looking up at a grassy mound, and that confused the autofocus.
Still, there is something of the happy energy that..
I think comes through in spite of my focus mistakes.
This little dog..
was having an absolute blast..
chasing her human..
around that small grassy hill. I'd say the young lady was having a great day too.
By now, my heart, as I sometimes say, was full of happy.
Bill and I had a date to go to a movie, so it was time to head home with Black Jack. As I turned back, the trees in the park were..
hard to resist.
They shimmered from just about every angle.
A crow tried to figure out how to drink without getting his/her feet wet, but I think finally gave up..
and a gentleman slept with all of his life possessions (I'm guessing) around him. I've been watching him for a couple of years now, but this is the first time I've taken a photo. I didn't disturb him but hope you will feel the respect that I have for all who find their way to get along in life. Perhaps he is homeless, but he rests well, eats well and is dressed appropriately for the weather. When it rains, he sleeps under the shelter that you can see three photos up to the far right of the trees. He is often there when I photograph the cormorants. I have a feeling he knows their habits in at least as much detail as I do. If ever we have the feeling that he is not doing okay, Bill and I will do what we can to help, but for now, I think he is living the life he chooses.
As said, it was hard to stop taking photos..
of the foliage.
The colours and textures are at a peak of beauty right now.
Home to pick up Bill, drop Black Jack off (guiltily) and then we were off on our bikes to Harrison Galleries for a good lunch and some wonderful art as well. This oil painting went up in the last few days. I love tugs and loved the same bright colours that seemed to follow me from the park. You can read about the artist, Stephen Unser, here. He calls this "Working on the Fraser River" and that brings back a memory of some wonderful drives that Bill and I did before he sold his truck. One of our pleasures was to watch the tugs move the log booms along the river.
The movie? It was called "The 100-Year-Old Man Who Climbed Out the Window and Disappeared" and we thought it did a very good job of representing the novel with the same title that Bill and I read aloud together, first in the hospital when he was ill, and then finishing at home several weeks later. The main character is played by Robert Gustaffson, quite a feat, given that he is only 49 years old. His make-up was apparently such a lengthy process, he once remained in it for three consecutive days. This imdb site gives some very interesting trivia, if you are interested.
In retrospect, I think we should have skipped the movie. I did worry about the use of an elephant in it, though the imdb review said animated affects were used for the scenes of concern. I checked into the possibility of abuse last evening, and there are facts that I believe the movie makers didn't know until after filming. Though I feel fairly confident the elephant wasn't abused during the shoot, there is no question that her previous life was horrific. Her name is Vana Mana, and you can read about her here. Because of her story, the circus was forced to stop showing elephants (yay!) but she does remain with the disreputable trainer described in several news stories, and she was rented out for this movie. I hereby am making a promise to myself not to attend any more movies using trained wildlife.
After we returned home from the movie, Bill and I had a happy conversation with his sister before watching a little bit of news together on television. As we sat, I suddenly noticed a drone outside our balcony window. Yikes! I am not a fan of drones, and especially when they hover in front of windows! You can see the drone on the left, lower side in my photo.
It was difficult to get a focus on it in the dark. I went to manual focus for this shot..
but here are some interesting affects that my camera caught..
when the autofocus was going through its attempt to work out an image.
I think I photographed a gentleman here, taking a photo (as I was) of the drone. I wonder if he called the city. I am concerned for the accident waiting to happen with drones. I also worry for birds, as the youtube of a hawk attacking a drone is one that makes me unhappy for the hawk.. not for the drone.
Late in the evening, Bill and I walked along False Creek with Black Jack. We laughed a lot.. the feeling is still with me as I write.
Someone posted lately about a book that claims there is no such thing as a soul mate. (More about that another day.) That may be true, but my feeling that Bill and I are soul mates is strong. Just the way it is.
I took a couple of photos of lights..
and of the lit-up ferry-dock before we returned home.
Some new flowers were placed in the centre of the lobby.
I asked Bill to sit by them.
LOVE these shots of him. Black Jack's curiosity about the flowers..
grew and this last shot is my favourite of all. So, lots of "happy" to begin and end the day with a couple of lessons learned and perhaps some decisions still to be made as my mind continues to turn. Many thanks to Bill, to Black Jack and to all who helped bring moments of their lives into mine. For more Sunday stories, perhaps you will find time to head on over to Unknown Mami's meme.