Tuesday, January 10, 2017

The theme of "light" for "Our Beautiful World" meme.

On Saturday, January 7th, Bill and I walked home from our favourite café with our little dog, Black Jack.  I felt inspired to record some of the lights we saw along our route, and only the next day, came across a blog meme named Our Beautiful World.  The title attracted me as our immediate world (Yaletown, Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada) is chock full of beauty.  The meme invites readers to submit a photo each week that represents a one-word theme that is announced each Wednesday.  When I saw that the word for this week was "light" I was hooked.  Yesterday (Monday the 9th) we were again at that same café and "light" was still on my mind.  Two ladies at a table near us were deep in conversation.  One of them was wagging her foot in sync with the words she enthusiastically emphasized.  We couldn't hear those words but I was mesmerized by her foot and its shadow playing against the light on the floor.  I will choose this first photo as my submission for the week, but all the other photos in today's post speak of light to me in one way or the other.  Many thanks to Kirsty for coming up with this meme idea and to Ros, Mandysea, Ariadne and Riitta, her blog buddies from different parts of the world, who help her with the meme.    
Here's the lady's foot in the down position.  (I showed her these photos and they made her smile.)
I took the photo below yesterday as well, before we went to the café.  That's Bill, my full-of-light and much loved partner.  We were playing pickleball in the tennis court by David Lam Park, about a two-minute walk from our apartment building.  You can see False Creek in the background.  We bike and/or walk along the paths by False Creek every single day.  The rain began to fall as we played and I loved the tree reflections on the tennis court, the light in the sky, and of course, Bill, who spontaneously jumped..  
into this pose as I took the photo.
Taking you back again to the café where the post began, it is in an art gallery so we get to bring Black Jack with us.  She sat on Bill's knee, watching the bouncing leg with almost as much focus as the camera.
Do you see the light in her eyes?  And, I love her crossed paws.  My last dog, Scott, used to cross his legs like that but it was unusual for Black Jack.
I thought you might like to get a sense of the art gallery.  I love that we sit with our refreshments in the midst of paintings and light all about us. The back of the gallery changes all the time.  Sometimes, this nook is set up for people to sit, but the last few days, it has functioned more as a storage area.
Remember that I mentioned photographing lights as we walked home? Well, I though you might like to see those photos as well.
 I'm short on time to explain exactly what you are seeing in each photo,
 except to say that these are all Yaletown sights.  Below is one of my two favourite places to shop for groceries.  I've always loved the way they light that building.
 We've been admiring the lights of this store for a couple of years.
Those "snowflake" decorations are illuminated for most of the winter season. When summer arrives, they are turned off but they wait, ready to be reawakened the following year.  Such a clever way to save time and energy and brighten the atmosphere for the season with the least light.
These trees are at the corner of Mainland and Davie Streets.  Again, a familiar lighting that returns each winter and remains for a couple of months.
This is Mainland Street.  You can read a bit about the history of the area here.  We had never before noticed that lit-up cross at the left of the photo.
 A train museum is pretty well in our backyard.  We have visited it several times.
Engine 374,The Roundhouse and the train museum are described here.  We have long admired the beautiful lighting in this part of our neighbourhood.
 Engine 374 is lovingly tended by history buffs who appreciate its significance.  If you live near Vancouver, the museum is free by donation and there is almost always someone ready and willing to tell you wonderful stories and answer any questions you might have about Vancouver's history.
 This is our doorstep, lit up for the Christmas and winter season.  Bill and Black Jack light up my life too, so they fit right into the picture and theme.
I did not take this next photo.  It is a selfie taken by my friend, Lynn-Anne, of herself and her daughter, Sage.  The light in their eyes warms my heart.  Sage will undergo a very serious surgery tomorrow.  It is expected to last for at least 13.5 hours.  Sage's body temperature will be lowered and her heart stopped, so that two small tumours can be removed from the vein between her liver and her heart.  She had a similar surgery a year ago that almost got rid of cancer.  That surgery gave her another year of excellent quality life and let her, as her mom said, just be a kid.  Sadly, two small tumours grew back and they are resistant to both chemo and radiation.  It is hoped that this 2nd surgery will be the final one needed to eradicate the cancer once and for all.  If you are so inclined, you could send Sage's mom a message of light and optimism at Sage's fight page.  Tomorrow will be a very, very difficult day for her, but she and the doctors have great hope for a successful outcome. 
Finally, Bill and I often go to Jazz Vespers performances at St. Andrew's Wesley, on Sunday afternoons.  This past sunday, Reverend Dan Chambers' talk was titled "Cracks of Light. Epiphany" and that, along with the music, left me feeling so uplifted, I thought you might enjoy a few small quotes from his talk as well as this light-filled performance of California Dreamin' by Don Stewart and the Ron Johnston quartet. Thank you to each one of you for stopping by to read today's post.  May you all find lots of moments of light today and every day.

Quotes from the talk:

"When events seem overwhelming, I look for survival strategies. As Vanessa Lapointe [child psychologist at BC Children's Hospital) recommends, I instinctively hunt for the light like someone in a room when the power goes out. Catching glimpses of light reorients and grounds me; seeing light rekindles the flame of hope. It’s a first start, and allows us to see well enough that we can find our direction."

He went on to tell a story of a young girl who offered her seat on the commuter train to a derelict man whom others were avoiding.  He added: "I drink in events like this like a thirsty hiker on a dusty trail.  I bow in gratitude."

"We live in a tenuous age. Our neat maps of the world order, which have been sufficiently reliable in the past, are no longer working. Well-travelled roads are blocked. The footpaths have changed. The world as we knew it has been disrupted and is cracked. But, as the poet sang in his gravelly voice, 'There’s a crack in everything. That’s how the light gets in.' May we have the eyes to see the cracks of light, the heart to recognize them, that hope is rekindled and the journey ahead embraced." (I bolded my favourite words of his talk.)

I hope you enjoy Don Stewart and the Ron Johnston Quartet performing California Dreamin'..  if you wish to skip the talking portion and go straight to the music, start at the 2:00 minute mark.


  1. We need light to bright up our lives and you have given us many different examples of the leading lights in your life.

    1. And your lovely comment is another example. Thanks so much, Fun60!

  2. What a lovely post with great and especailly light shots bring light in my still dark morning. Cute dog is watching...
    Good Luck for Sage and greetings from Germany

    1. Thank you, Mascha! Kind thoughts all the way from Germany for Sage are very special. I will pass those on to her mom.

  3. A smile is a light that I see it in the little girl and her mother, despite their enormous challenges. Courage, truth and optimism are lights strung together. So many sparkles everywhere.

    1. Yes, Sage and her mom radiate courage, truth and optimism as does the medical team. Thanks for the comment, Maria! It brings light into my heart as I wait to hear news from Lynn-Anne. It will be a very long day for them.

  4. What a beautiful post !! You have a lovely dog! He has such a noble face :)
    I sincerely say that he is just a very photogenic !!

  5. Interesting post. You have a lot of light in your life and I think you appreciate it. I like the picture with Black Jack and lady's shoe. Also Black Jack is so cuuute!

  6. so much light everywhere in your life and your surrounding. Love everything I have seen here. :)

  7. Ah, Carol, it took me a while to know who you were, but couldn't get to your blog until now. Your comments about biking, seemed we "knew" each other. Now I know had contact when I was on blogspot(my blog was called "Artistique"). Not knowing how wordpress exactly worked (2011), I lost contact with several people! Great to see you back again!

    1. Ah, of course, Jeannette! I, too, knew you seemed familiar, but now, you have put the pieces of the puzzle together. Great to see you as well!!

  8. Terrific photos! Thanks so much for sharing at OBW!!

  9. Hi there Carol,
    I have enjoyed reading about the Green Heron, but why is it called 'green' I think I may be missing something?
    You snaps of the 'Spectacle of Lights' around the city are amazing.
    The awesome smile of the little girl created an aura around her,
    and her loving Mama.....truly touching!
    I hope all went well with her
    and her family.
    I had to smile at Bill's pickle Ball, (what's that)? stance, looked more
    like he was Fencing, 'En-gerd'....
    Then there was Black Jack's delightful laid back pose, sitting nonchalantly with front legs crossed and those dainty little paws dangling so elegantly over the edge of the couche.
    I loved the jazz version of 'California Dreaming'.
    I would dearly love visit Vancouver one day, it seems to be such a vibrant
    and interesting city.
    We have an open invitation from Leslie (The Pedalogue) who knows? One day maybe...In her Apartment block there is a suite for visitors which would be ideal.
    So good to catch up with you again, I've thoroughly enjoyed reading you meme
    again, so interesting,
    Best wishes,
    ABCW team.

  10. This post gave me shivers, Carol! The loveliest photo was of Lynn-Anne and Sage. But then, all of your photos capture beautiful and uplifting light in this post. I thought the first photo of Bill jumping on the court was a gorgeous capture of light. I always think of photography as painting with light. rev. Chamber's quotes about light were inspiring. Thanks for sharing!