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...a glimpse into life on Vancouver Island, needle felting, photography, food, gardening, etcetera...etcetera
"Happiness always looks small when you hold it in your hands, but let it go, and at once you learn how big and precious it is."
Maxim Gorky

Thursday, March 20, 2014

Across the puddle...

On Monday I went across the puddle to the mainland to have
a visit with my brother Dan, affectionately known as Brogorman,
and my nieces who are on spring break.
Dan lives in North Vancouver so aside from the big ferry you also take
whats known as the Seabus. It's a 10 minute ride across to the north shore.
Looking back to the city from the north
Burrard Inlet is part of the Port of Vancouver where goods coming
and going to and from all over the world are moved about from
rail cars, shipping containers and on and off of huge freighter cargo ships.
 rail yard on the city side
Container ship being unloaded

These ships are huge! 
You really get a sense of their size when you are close to them.
Each of those containers are the size of a rail car, so about 40 feet long
 and there are hundreds on board. 
Sometimes humans are smuggled in these with (as you can imagine) not very good outcomes.
We took our nieces to Granville Island which I've posted before about here.
It's a wonderful place with shops and food and art and boats but this trip 
I was focused on galvanized metal we have the gang walking through the 'gallery'...
 The textures and colours were so beautiful...
...metal turned bad ...
 ...and then good again...
 ...well, in my eyes it looked good....
Under the Granville Street bridge...
I also fell in love with the winter kale plants...
 Even in it's decay, it had a colour scheme to dream up some ideas for
felting? knitting? painting?
Canada goose feathers were all the rage this day as well...
 Hello there!
 How handsome you are!
We made time to play on the slide...
 ...gazed at kites in the market...
After we dropped off the girls to go home we stopped by 
one of my all time favorite buildings in the world.
The Marine building down on the waterfront.
Surrounded now by the most modern of architecture, this beauty remains a show stopper.
At one time it was the tallest skyscraper in the British Empire.
Built in 1930 for a cost of $2.2 million dollars, it ran $1.5 million dollars OVER budget.
During the height of the depression this was not a good thing and it was sold to 
The Guinness Family of Ireland for $900,000 dollars.
The architects who designed it wanted it to, according to Wikipedia,
"evoke some great crag rising from the sea, clinging with sea flora and fauna,
 tinted in sea-green, touched with gold."
And indeed it does just that...
 the art deco features are stunning ...

The entrance way alone stops you in your tracks.
The outside of the building is decorated with all manner of sea flora and fauna
as well as the great transportation methods of the day...
If that's not enough to make you swoon, wait till you get inside...
 It was quite dark inside so my photos weren't the best but you can get an idea...
Gorgeous brass elevator doors...
...above them the old car call board...
 ...inlaid marble zodiac floor
 I absolutely LOVE these carvings of Viking looking boat bows up along the walls...
...up on the second floor you can get a closer look at 
the intricate carvings and the beautiful colours...
 Custom tile work
Inside the elevator walls are all inlaid with local wood...
I don't think there are many buildings being designed and made in the manner
of this one. Attention to detail was first and foremost and I'm always
in awe and grateful that this building has preserved the dreams
and skills of those who came before us.
If you're ever in Vancouver you must look up (mind the pun!)
The Marine Building...355 Burrard Street.

Monday, March 17, 2014

Top o' the mornin' to ye...a song for Monday

Well today is the day that half the world takes claim to their Irish heritage.
I am fortunate to make this claim honestly as my grandparents
are from the Emerald Isle and the land is a place close to my heart.
(Antrim Coastline)
(Dingle Peninsula)
As I traveled Ireland's lovely roads and green hills a few years back with
my dad and daughter, I became even more involved with
my love affair with The Motherland.
(Aran Islands)
So today I send a tribute out to the land, the music, the people,
and the cultural heritage of which travels far and wide
and leaves many trails behind.
(music shop, Killarney)
Yesterday I went to a fantastic live show at Cherry Point Vinyards
to see Ruth Moody and her band. If you've never seen her, have a look and listen.
She has the voice of an angel and the writings of a poet.
As a tribute to St Patricks Day, she did a rendition of this song.
So here is the original version for you now.
Happy St Patricks Day all!