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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, September 8, 2016

How I spent my summer holidaze...

 Remember having the pencil in the notebook during the first week back at school
  trying to corral all of those wild times you had all summer??
The time spent outdoors from dawn to dusk 
seemed endless (and only because you were called in to dinner!) . 
Cottage bound, car packed to see the cousins at the lake...the fire pit, the days
when all you wore all day long was a bathing suit and a towel around the waist...ah, sweet
childhood summers.
This summer was a working summer for me.
And I don't mean a 'going to work' I mean working at moving.
Once moved, it was all about moving in, painting the new house inside...(A LOT!)
But oh so much easier when there's nothing IN the house yet!
But I did have some fun and just to send you a glimpse of how
the non working side of my beautiful warm days were spent...
As with every summer, my young niece Stephanie came to spend almost
2 months here...such a lovely person to have around...always singing and ever so helpful!
We went out on a spontaneous night on the town in Victoria one evening
and found ourselves poking about in Chinatown as usual.
We were taking a selphie in front of my favourite door in Fan Tan Alley...
...when we were invited up to have a look inside!
Since I was about 12 or 13 years old I had always wanted to see what was behind
#23 1/2! So up the 50 stairs and into the home of a gentleman who's restoring the place...
 My 'real' camera is out of commission so had to rely on the iPhone for pictures...
Looking into the courtyard of a disappearing landscape...
 ...before it gets swallowed up by developers.
Speaking of developing...over a century ago a hole was blasted through this piece of land to allow a shortcut for water to be diverted to the small town of Port Alberni nearby. This 'Hole in the Wall' landmark is what is left behind. Stephanie, Good Pal Irma and her new pup Silas and I took a day trip up there to check it out....
It really is something to see...the hole is about 12 feet in diameter and on such a hot day it was a gloriously cool place to be... 
As mentioned Good Pal Irma has a new puppy!! 
Poor old Frank succumbed to cancer. He was Griffins brother.
We went on so many adventures together so now the torch is passed on to young Silas.
Irma wanted me to get his brother but with moving and all I'm just not there yet. Maybe in the spring.
Up the creek there are hundreds of cairns or Inukshuks that other wanderers have left as 
markers to their journey here. It was quite spectacular!
Another adventure I went on with a friend down from Denman Island was to visit this place...
My family has some history here...my grandfathers brother, my great Uncle Leonard, was married
to Thora Harrison. It was her great grandfather who built this 600 acre farm in 1870 and is one of the oldest continuously operated farms on Vancouver Island....
It's a lovely place...
But it has several different stories to it's past, one being that of a pregnant mare urine milking facility.
This urine is used in the pharmaceutical industry and does not have a pleasant history.
The current owner says she still gets shivers when she goes into this particular barn.
This chewed up window frame could be evidence of very bored,
 penned up horses who didn't get out much...
Now it is a happy place and a refuge for rescue animals...
I have much more to write about this place but for now I leave it on a happy goat note...
One of my criteria when we were looking for a place in town was that of being able to ride my bike to a shop. So after finally getting my bike on the road again, I peddled down to the end of our street and explored this fantastic trail system...
This is the Colquitz River Trail which meanders along the Colquitz Creek 
and through Garry Oak meadows and bog lands...
I am so grateful to have this within such easy reach.
It took me 10 minutes to ride to a large shopping area without being on the road ONCE!!
During these melancholy days of autumn, I am once again missing my
old furry love Griffin to ramble with...
I found this very weathered baseball deep in the grass beside the creek.
I wanted it to speak to me of how far it came and the kids who lost it and what a great home run it must have been that hot July afternoon at the ballpark not far away...
In some places along the trail I felt as if I was Huck Finn travelling under the cool weeping willows...
Sadly the worst part of our move is that our 9 year old Rueben went missing.
It's been a month and a half now and still no sign of him.
He was a real country cat and was not very happy living in the close proximity of other houses and cats. We postered the area heavily, put him on all of the websites on social media we could think of but still nothing. We are not giving up hope though. I've heard some incredible stories of cats who have reappeared after long absences. I read the other day of a cat who found it's family after 9 YEARS! If Rueben did try to go back to where we moved from it's a long long journey of 35 kilometers but you just never know...we have alerted the new owner just in case.

So that's a few highlights (and a big low) of my summer this year.
I am currently trying to fit my old large studio into a much smaller space and hopefully
in the not too distant future I will start to create again.
The grey, wet days will help me in that sense.
Time to hunker down and feel the fall.
Hope you are all well.