Friday, August 10, 2018

Still fighting it...(from my archives)

So, where was I with my last blog post on travel? 
Oh, yes... relinquished my lifestyle, left the wet west coast for the dry interior of British Columbia, and some years later settled into domesticity here on the prairie "where the deer and the antelope play"!

I could book a flight, or get my husband to drive me out to BC now and then to check on my family, so it was enough.

Dick thinks Iʼm cute, which is probably why I married him.
However, it is a compliment about which Iʼm ambivalent. Most of the time, I am glad he thinks so, until I remember Iʼm a cute old lady, not a cute young thing. Sigh.

But I've learned a few things, some of which you might want to use

Okay, so you’re not as young as you used to be. You have pains in places where you didn’t used to have places, and you suspect your weight in pounds far exceeds your height in centimetres, although you’ve never been mathematically inclined and perhaps never mastered the metric system. The math part won’t matter anyway, unless you want to explore countries where everything is metric. 

However, I think you might not really want to explore anywhere any more.
You would walk to the library if you thought you could carry all those books home. (You're still a fast reader, so one or two books will not suffice.) 
You’d walk to the coffee place you love so much, just to hang out for a while, if you thought you wouldn’t have to ask someone for a ride home. “Maybe I can get there, but I don’t know if I can get back!” has become your new mantra. 

Can this really be you?
How did you get to be an unfittie?
You remember when you could work full time plus overtime, do your own housework and laundry, serve on a couple of committees, attend a few meetings, and go dancing on a Friday or Saturday evening.
You remember when you were 34 and could outrun a soccer-playing 13-year-old in a hundred-yard dash, although you realize you couldn’t have held out for a longer distance, even then.
Maybe it was a sign, but you were too triumphant to notice it. 

Triumphant, oh yes, you were, and you were all kinds of other good things, too. You were still young in your 30s – you were bright, productive, resourceful, excited and exciting. Members of the opposite sex still turned to look when you passed, and you still appreciated it. Hey, you still expected it! 

You don’t know when you became invisible

When your hair first started greying, you thought it quite chic. Rather than dye it to conceal the grey, you dyed the grey parts purple, to match your favourite sweaters. You certainly weren’t invisible then.  Now, of course, you regret that the only proof of you with purple hair is a black and white photo.
So you weren't completely invisible in your 40s. You could still turn a head now and then, but nobody called you ‘cute’ any more. Instead, they might have said ‘good-looking’ or perhaps ‘charming’ or, if they loved you very much, ‘gorgeous’ which, of course, you took with a grain of salt.

In your 50s, you fondly remembered the plans of your youth, when you wanted to change the world. You never did accomplish it but, 'way back in your 40s, you had still imagined there was time.

The wild excitement of civil rights issues and women’s issues had, perhaps, given way to more subtle environmental causes with no marching, but you could still get pretty wrought-up about saving whales, pandas, or your local river. 
You want to save the polar bears, plus those endangered penguin species, but you aren’t sure you could travel far enough to see them.

You aren’t even sure you want to travel at all.

Home is nice

Then, one day, as you both sit reading, you casually ask your spouse, just as a point of interest, in order to see if you’re still soulmates and not as a suggestion at all: “If you could go anywhere in the whole world, where would you want to go?” 

Much to your surprise, he waves a brochure at you and declares, without hesitation or doubt, “Here!” And "here" turned out to be the Galapagos Islands, via Ecuador!

Because my husband always says, "I don't want to go without you," I have found myself in some surprising places, and I have delighted in seeing more than a few amazing things. It hasn't always been easy for me, but I've come to believe it is better to go than to stay at home. In other words, I won't regret going, but I might regret not going. 

My large and healthy husband has been dragging me around the world by the scruff of my neck for several years now. When he presents me with an exotic destination and an exciting itinerary, I usually demur, suggesting he should, perhaps, go without me so I don't slow him down. But he always talks me into going. Does this make me weak-willed and wishy-washy? I think not. I think it merely makes me easily persuaded.

From the archives of An Unfittie's Guide to Adventurous Travel
Offered here because my latest unfittedness involves my eyes. Never strong, they have deteriorated recently, so I can add the optometrist to my list of medical professionals.


Saturday, July 7, 2018

Blue Sky Over the Rockies

I seem to have entered the same photos twice, here and the one next to it. My apologies. My eyes are giving me trouble right now, so I'm a little confused.

Richard Schear photos
Richard Schear photos, above and right

Revelstoke, British Columbia
June, 2018

Revelstoke, BC, high in Canada's Rocky Mountains, has its full share of bridges, as my husband Richard Schear discovered when walking our dog the morning after our stay there.
Yes, it can get took us a couple of tries to find our way back to Highway 1 (the Trans Canada Highway) on our car trip through my home province, British Columbia last month, but the wait was worth its weight in photo opportunities.
(Gotta have at least one pun. Dick loves them!)

Richard Schear photo

The next two are my sky shots...not beautiful, perhaps, but mine own...

Kay Davies photos above, and below


Thursday, June 28, 2018

If you missed this, here it is again

Wishing my friends in the US
a very happy Fourth of July!
(Posted also last week on Skywatch Friday)

Note: I am quoting below, without permission, from Verbatim: The Language Quarterly, back issues of which, I understand, will be available online in the near future. Meanwhile, I thought this bit of fun was a lot of fun.

Grammarians take note!
"We (at Grammarly) gently poke fun at the messes people can get into with English, and the misunderstandings that arise from the language."

I'll be watching for it to come online, but now I'd like to quote a few choice bits, as Canada's neighbours to the south get ready to celebrate their Independence Day holiday.

"One of the causes of  the Revolutionary Wars was the English put tacks in their tea. During the War, the Red Coats and Paul Revere was throwing balls over stone walls. Finally the colonists won the war and no longer had to pay for taxis.

"Thomas Jefferson, a virgin, and Benjamin Franklin were two singers of the Declaration of Independence. Franklin had gone to Boston carrying all his clothes in his pocket and a loaf of bread under each arm. 
"He invented electricity by rubbing cats backwards and declared, ‘A horse divided against itself cannot stand.’
Franklin died in 1790 and is still dead.

"George Washington married Martha Curtis and in due time became the Father of Our Country. Then the Constitution of the United States was adopted to secure domestic hostility. Under the Constitution, the people enjoyed the right to keep bare arms.

"Abraham Lincoln became America’s greatest Precedent. Lincoln’s mother died in infancy, and he was born in a log cabin which he built with his own hands. When Lincoln was President, he wore only a tall silk hat.
He said, 'In onion there is strength.' Abraham Lincoln wrote the Gettysburg Address while traveling from Washington to Gettysburg on the back of an envelope.
He also freed the slaves by signing the Emasculation Proclamation, and the 14th Amendment gave the ex-Negroes citizenship. But the Clue Clux Clan would torcher and lynch the ex-Negroes and other innocent victims. It claimed it represented law and odor.
On the night of April 14, 1865, Lincoln went to the theatre and got shot in his seat by one of the actors in a moving picture show.
The believed assinator was John Wilkes Booth, a supposingly insane actor. This ruined Booth’s career."

(from Verbatim: The Language Quarterly)
Posting a few days early for
Fiona's memorable meme

Monday, June 25, 2018

Trek across Alberta to B.C. coast

Not a trek, not really, at least not on foot, but this month we did drive from southeastern Alberta to southwestern British Columbia with visits to Revelstoke, Kamloops, Ashcroft, Hope, Aldergrove, Coquitlam, Langley, South Surrey, White Rock, Crescent Beach, Kelowna, and Golden, BC.
It was quite a lot of driving for my husband, who didn't complain about not knowing know my friends and relatives very well, except my brother Clint, our other punster. Thanks, Dick!

Bonnie smells golden flowers in Golden, BC
"Do you think there might be rabbits here?""

"Are these the same flowers, only different?"

Of course we took our bouncy forty-pound Bonnie-Belinda dog, so Dick always had something to do.
This dog would keep anyone busy, family or not: go-for-a-walk, go-for-a-run, even stop to smell the flowers in case a tree or bush was hiding a rabbit or, something new to her, a chipmunk!

"Flowers under a blue sky. It doesn't get much better than this!"

After visiting friends in Kelowna, BC, where I grew up, we headed back to Alberta via Golden, BC, a place neither of us had visited.
We were impressed.
Two rivers run through this small town of fewer than 5,000 people, so Golden is a tourist mecca for water sports.
The larger and more widely known of the two rivers is, of course, the Columbia, which flows from its source in Columbia Lake at an elevation of 2,700 feet (830 meters) near the crest of the Rocky Mountains southwest of Banff National Park, all the way across the border to the Pacific Ocean at Astoria, Washington.
The town of Golden's smaller, faster river is the Kicking Horse, beloved of sports enthusiasts addicted to white-water rafting.

For  Fiona's  Our World Tuesday

Thursday, June 21, 2018

The greenest green I've ever seen

Crescent Beach was "my beach" when I was a child visiting my grandparents.
I loved to see the ocean, and the mountains above the city of Vancouver in the distance

Sometimes British Columbia, Canada, where I was born, surprises me.

I was born on "The Wet West Coast" but grew up in the near-desert dry of BC's Okanagan Valley. When I finished high school, however, my father moved us all, lock, stock, cat, and dog to their favourite place: White Rock, B.C.

Crescent Beach near White Rock, BC, here facing
the town of Blaine, Washington

Eventually I became used to the dampness
of coastal living
but I suspected it wasn't really
for me even though I loved the ocean, the ins and the outs of it, and I loved to see the greenery.

Everything is green on the B.C. coast and I, in particular, if not both of us, loved the lush look of it.

When my husband and I travelled from our home on the Canadian prairie and over the Rocky Mountains to the coast for a visit with my family, I loved it all anew. For a while I even ignored the pain in my old aching body!

I cannot say we saw no rain, because there were a couple of hours on two different days when we got wet but we saw much to love in the greenery, especially on sunny days when it contrasted so well with a blue sky.
(Our return trip through the Rockies is a whole 'nother story, to be kept for another day.)

We stayed in Langley  (above and below) for easy access to Vancouver
although we never really got as far as the city

The tall evergreens were blowing in the wind this day as Dick walked
our Bonnie-Belinda in the dog-designated area outside our hotel

Best of all, the sun was shining through a pastel blue sky!
Photos by Kay Davies and Richard Schear

Posting today for Fiona's marvellous meme

Skywatch Friday

Friday, June 15, 2018

Down by the river side

Coulee — Wikipedia says "a deep ravine" and I add "carved by a river, over a long time."

South Saskatchewan River, right, beneath coulee walls.
For Skywatch Friday, June 15, 2018

Coulee with one deer (see? centre, near bottom)

Coulee with three deer
Richard Schear photos

Posting for Fiona's meme Skywatch Friday

Meanwhile...I know I have posted, more than once, that anonymous comments will be deleted. I enjoy comments, but I cannot accept any from anonymous sources. —K

Tuesday, June 5, 2018

Antelope disappearing? Oh, deer!

Numbers of Alberta deer species are disappearing, as well as pronghorn antelope, which might not have disappeared—apparently they might just have changed location. We loved seeing them, and we miss them.
We have deer, however, and in the winter they come to eat from our ornamental crabapple tree. They're so beautiful to watch!

Female White Tail Deer
White Tail Deer Fawn

Male White Tail Deer

We used to see herds of pronghorn antelope not far from our house, but for several years now they are gone from this part of southeastern Alberta, seemingly not to return. However, nature can surprise us at any time. 

Male Pronghorn Antelope

Female Pronghorn Antelope

Mule Deer "Stotting"
(trotting with all four feet
 off the ground)

Mule deer

Ever since we moved to Medicine Hat, Alberta, we have enjoyed watching deer eating the ornamental crabapples off the tree in our front yard. I am no naturalist, and I still confuse white tail deer and mule deer, no matter how many times I'm corrected. But I'm happy to see them, and that's what counts in My World.

Posting for Fiona's OUR WORLD TUESDAY