Saturday, June 27, 2015

Sharing with Eileen's #80 Critter Post

It is a beautiful Saturday in Vancouver.  Time to share with Eileen's Saturday's Critters meme some of the ones enjoyed over the past ten days.  Thanks, Eileen, for your amazing blog and for finding time to encourage us to participate in the meme that is always guaranteed to bring smiles.

This video of pets interrupting humans in yoga postures made me laugh this morning.  Perhaps, some of you will find time to watch it.

On Thursday, June 18th, we took Black Jack to The Pet Shop Boys to have her nails trimmed.  The cost is only $10, she is never traumatized, and all nail-trimming proceeds go to animal rescues.  We really appreciate this place!  This month, the rescue to receive the funds is Turtle Gardens, one that is near and dear to my heart.  While I waited for David to finish Black Jack's nails, I managed to catch a shot over the counter of the two (adorable) resident Great Danes.
There's Dave emerging from the inner office with Black Jack!
Bill waited outside. It's an uphill ride to the shop so he appreciated the shade.  Black Jack back in her basket, we both looked forward to the downhill ride home.
But first, Black Jack posed for a close-up.
On Saturday, June 20th, we rode to Stanley Park's Lost Lagoon.  This is a view of the lagoon to the left as we stood on the little stone bridge.
And, here's the view to the right.
We hadn't seen this duck before.  A hybrid, but what mix, I wonder.  Perhaps, a domestic and a mallard?
Looking through my lens, I gasped at the beauty of the Wood Ducks.
I do that quite often, but still, their colours seemed.. 
especially vibrant.
A Blue Heron shared hunting territory with the ducks, 
and a Mute Swan nested nearby.  
A few steps further, and we came across this Wood Duck mama and her babies.
The "cute factor" definitely went into overdrive..
Something about those little orange-tipped bills.
Even the swan opened an eye to get a better look.
I've taken a few Dragon Flies lately, but this one staring up from ground level was a new perspective.
We rode to Harrison Gallery's café after that.  Bill (in his new shirt!) concentrated on a crossword and Black Jack concentrated on keeping him company. 
Bill gave me a quick smile (while Black Jack completely ignored me)..
and then it was back to serious matters at hand.
We always pass by Emery Barnes Park on the way home.  That day, a Gathering Place Community Centre event was in progress.  The band had some great tunes and was playing at a comfortable volume (!!) so we stopped.  Bill immediately noticed this rainbow over the fountain. 
I've heightened the definition so you can see it.
There's that cute factor again!
The band, under the leadership of Jack Garton, is called Demon Squadron.  We liked it so much, we found ourselves a seat and stayed a while.  Several people, including a dog, danced to the happy beat.  
On Sunday, June 21st, we heard music in the park across from our building.
Bill and I didn't know about The Gathering Place Community Centre, but.. 
learned that the same organization we had seen just the day before also put on a very pleasant Summer Solstice celebration in David Lam Park.  
I hope to write a little more about that, but in the mean time, 
here are a few of the critters we saw.
On Monday, June 22nd, we encountered Gary and his dog, Yoda.  Gary does not own (or approve of) computers, so I can't give you a link, but he builds sidecars for bicycles that do quite a nice job of accommodating pooches.  I caught a photo of him once but he was on the fly and didn't hear me call out to him.  This time, Bill got him to stop, and we found him to be a creative and interesting fellow. 
Yoda is 13, losing his sight, and beginning to show signs of his age.  However, he is adorable, friendly and happy to be out and about in his riding gear.  He approved of my salmon treats too.  Very sweet dog!
Gary suggested we sit Black Jack in the sidecar for a photo.  She was fine..
with that idea, especially when treats were forthcoming.  There is a harness but since we didn't take her for a ride, we didn't attach it to her.  Gary makes these sidecars for a living and he enjoys building ones with comical themes.  (Yoda does the "Red Baron" schtick as well.)   Though he doesn't have a web site, I do have his phone number, if anyone is looking for a sidecar for their bicycle.
We continued our ride around False Creek to Granville Island and I took a quick look in this shop.  Outside the door was a colourful chair with "chair for the patient partner" written on it.
Bill and Black Jack knew it was meant for them :)

I didn't buy anything from the shop, but liked many of the items.  One of my favourite was this crow doorstopper that was actually in use.
And speaking of crows, it was the following Thursday morning (June 25th) that I saw this one.  I promised myself I would no longer feed the crows in the neighbouring park, but lost my resolve when this one began meeting me each morning.  I began to give him/her two small salmon treats that I always have with me for Black Jack.  Just two.  The crow was especially polite, never demanding more and always waiting quietly.  However, s/he started about a week ago taking them from my hand before I could get a chance to place them on the fence or on the ground.  Then, one morning, the inevitable happened and another crow witnessed the event.  I fed that one, not realizing that s/he wasn't "my" crow.   
Things deteriorated quickly and it looks like I will have to stop feeding again.  This one gave me quite a swat/scratch on the head with his/her feet yesterday.  I didn't reward that gesture, but feel a bit sad, as I have only myself to blame for the problem in the first place.  Don't feed the wildlife, folks, unless you have a feeder.  I wonder if this crow was hinting that I should take Gandhi's quote to heart :) 
On the way back from that morning walk, I caught a shot of this White-crowned..
Sparrow.  We have quite a few of them around lately.
Later in the afternoon we went out on our bikes. Bill is riding my bike in the photo below.  It doesn't fit him but he has a purpose in mind for wanting to know how it feels.  He also wanted to analyze an action that, for him, comes naturally. Though some of you may think I'm athletic, the truth is that I'm fairly strong and I have good endurance but my coordination is not the best. Though I've been riding a bike for many years, I still have problems making tight turns, especially when I'm coming down a hill.  There's a very sharp "S" turn on the Cambie Bridge descent, and I've been coming to a full stop and putting my feet to the ground to navigate it.  That is quite embarrassing when others are behind me.  Bill has no problem with it so we decided to see if his tips would help me improve my cycling skills. 
We began by working on the flat, and with Bill's help, I did improve.  One very simple thing that I had to learn is to look into the turn and see exactly where my front wheel is going.   
As you can see, Black Jack was happy to ride around with us.  She really seems to love her basket.  I'll let you know how the lessons go.  I hope soon to be able to show you a photo of a perfect navigation down the Cambie Bridge "S" turn.
We are in the middle of quite a heat spell (although nothing like some we have heard about around the world).  Bill and Black were happy to sit in the shade after our little practice session.
I took a couple of Redwing Blackbird (female) shots,
and then I returned to them.
It is rare to see Black Jack panting.  She loves heat and she loves sun, but that day, being with her Bill in the shade was about as good as life gets. 
This Bush Tit was in a nearby branch, perhaps thinking we were onto a good thing.  I love these two shots of him/her, this one with head cocked curiously, 
and eyes peeking at us from behind a leaf in the other.
June 26th
We haven't seen many seals lately, but i spotted this one early yesterday morning.  I think s/he was sleeping.
And, a final shot of a Cormorant flying by as I watched the seal. That's it for today.  Thanks, Eileen!  And thanks, as always, to you for stopping by.  Have a wonderful rest of your day!


  1. Hi Carol. Your blog is full of beautiful shots. I loved the yoga and pets video, the white crowned sparrows -- I miss them. They are around nearby but just not in our location. The water in the seal shot is so beautiful. We're visiting in Boise. Back home soon.

  2. Beauty is Black Jack, and I love the video, funny.

  3. Hello Carol, what an awesome critter post! I love the sleeping Great Danes, the Wood Ducks & ducklings are so cute! The rainbow fountain shot is beautiful. Wonderful shots of Bill and Black Jack. And Yoda is one of my favorite, what a cute dog! Thank you so much for linking up and sharing your post. Have a happy day!

  4. Flots of interesting critters you found!

  5. Oh, I like the colour of Bill’s new shirt … and that almost looks like a dab of lipstick painted onto the baby duck’s bill. I hope all the critters are finding ways to stay cool. I hear it will even be warmer next week. Oddly enough, we could use a bit rainfall here on the coast but I don’t think it’s going to happen for a while.

  6. Quite the assortment of images to view. You guys have great days out on the bike. Hope it is not too hot for you now.

  7. Hello Carol,
    Your post had so many beautiful photos of bicycles, dogs, and nature in general.
    Here are the top 4 things I loved about this post:
    1. The bicycles
    2. The Peace sign made by a human on the bicycle
    3. The dogos and the sidecar
    4. That there exists a man who does not use computer

    Your photos show your love for nature and your joy!

    Thanks for bringing that positive energy to all of us.

    Yes, bicycles go where your head is turned, but you will get that, if you need to :)

    Thanks for stopping by my site.

    Have a Wonderful Week & Weekend!
    Peace :)

  8. How I love following your journey with my little brother! You are certainly having fun! I love the Solstice party costumes. In Victoria, we are celebrating (two weeks late) with a potluck lunch, followed by a performance of "The Tempest" by Shakespeare on the Sea on Sunday! The VP of the Victoria Humanists is the director!