It’s been an interesting week. The week started with a call from my mother, telling me that I could expect a visit from a cousin, visiting Canada from Holland.
Work has been busy with a couple of very large jobs landing on my plate. One has been in the works for a couple of weeks already and I managed to finish it before the second big job arrived late Wednesday, due out by Friday. On Thursday, I took a couple of tubs of letters home for stamping, and shortly after getting home, the phone rang. It was my cousin, asking for directions to our house.
About half an hour later, Gerard arrived. He stayed the night at hour place, and accompanied me to work Friday morning where I gave him the grand tour and he went on his way, next stop Salmon Arm. He’ll be in Canada for a total of three weeks, hoping in that time, to drive up to Williams Lake (about 5-6 hours driving from where we live) and then back down towards Vancouver for his return trip.
I know John enjoyed his company, as did I, and it seemed Gerard enjoyed himself, too. He certainly enjoyed the peach cobbler and was thrilled to see, and pick, a ripe, large peach right off the tree.
Friday evening, when John got home from work, he told me we were going downtown. It wasn’t for dinner or anything like that; a new park opened downtown and he wanted to check out what our tax dollars have purchased this time. It’s all part of a downtown revitalization program.
Park isn’t really the word for it. When I think of a park, I think of grassy areas, benches for resting and people watching, walking paths, etc. You get the idea. This park, though circled by grassy areas, benches and sidewalks (at the waterfront) is, for all intents and purposes, what will be a skating rink in the winter. For now, it’s a huge concrete slab. There’s no shade, something I would have thought important since summers here can reach up to 40ºC (about 100ºF).
Overlooking the “slab” is a hill of concrete, replete with steps and wheelchair ramps (can we say skateboarder paradise?), leading to a plateau with a sculpture of a bear. I did find the bear rather interesting, although I must say that I would have preferred being able to get a little closer so that I could actually see the piece in its entirety.
I always have my camera with me now, and yesterday was no exception. I took one picture that I’m really pleased with. Even John was impressed. I’m calling this one “Spirit of the Bear”.
Incidentally, there is a plaque explaining the sculpture. It reads “Bear by Brower Hatcher 2010. Bear is a tribute to Kelowna’s settlement on the shores of Okanagan lake. The theme of the artwork is a grizzly bear – Kelowna being an English translation of the Okanagan/Syilx First Nation word for Female Grizzly Bear. Within Bear’s body are symbols that represent periods of Kelowna’s history. The boat-like shape at the base is a reference to the role the lake has played in the evolution of the community and the shaping of its identity.”
And finally, we heard about a magnitude 7 earthquake in the Christchurch area of New Zealand yesterday. Family members here in Canada were, and still are, very concerned. We have family there. The news said that over 90% of the city is without power and areas, including the area where my cousins live, may need to be evacuated. Needless to say, we haven’t heard much at this point. What we do know, from one of my cousins there, is that the family is ok, warm in front of the fireplace and concerned that they may need to be evacuated as they do live near the coast. Our thoughts and prayers are with them.
(As always, just click on the pictures to see a larger version.)