Sunday, September 30, 2007

Another must see photo from John's blog

Emma (John and Carol's cat)

Every time I look at this picture I think of the old Chinese proverb, “You will wait a long time for a roasted duck to fly into your mouth”.- comment by John

Saturday, September 29, 2007

Cool Mailboxes

I loved this photo today from John's Photoblog

Mailboxes for houseboats in Vancouver

So I decided to google images "mailboxes" and brought up this site which has some great examples of imaginative mailboxes. Sam's Photos of Mailboxes

I've also copied a few below...enjoy!

Thursday, September 27, 2007

The best coasters in the world!

The Curlings gave me these coasters for my birthday and they are just amazing...extremely attractive and because the design is slightly ridged glasses NEVER stick. A super design.

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Itty Bitty Book Review: A Short History...

"A Short History of Tractors in Ukrainian" by Marina Lewycka

Really quite a good effort for a first novel. It's amusing and has some interesting insights about the haves, the have-nots, and the sort of haves. Worth a read.

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

A few laughs from Lily Tomlin

This old comedy skit is still funny...load of old and new comedy on YouTube.

Monday, September 24, 2007

Walking around the neighbourhood...part III

I missed planting my sunflowers this year. I'm amazed by the number of people who do. It's such a pleasure to see them especially at this time of year when summer is pretty much over.

This sign says it all...fall is here.

I took this little video with my camera...I don't think this one would have ever run away! I'm not sure what was so interesting on the driveway but I'm sure most people around here would love it if they would stick to driveway food. A few days ago I came across a family of four deer ravenously eating everything in sight in one of the most beautiful local gardens. More the norm.

Sunday, September 23, 2007

Walking around the neighbourhood...part II

I love the renovation that people have made here. Instead of making some ostentatious monster home like most of their neighbours have done, they choose to create an attractive low level home that fits into the wooded surroundings...and you just gotta love that welcoming front porch! I guess the front porch will never really come back. This one is charming but unless everyone has them and everyone uses them, they don't serve as a way for people to interact with their neighbours.

The Oak leaves are beginning to fall...glad we don't have to rake them...

Love this address sign but I imagine the fire department wouldn't be thrilled.

Saturday, September 22, 2007

Walking around the neighbourhood...Part I

John Tod House

John Tod was born in Scotland and emigrated to Canada in 1811 where he rose to the position of chief fur trader with the Hudson's Bay Company. His house, located at 2564 Heron Street, is western Canada’s oldest house, completed in 1851. Tod built the house from local heavy timber, with pegged and dovetailed construction rare to the area. Since 1929 owners of the house have complained of ghostly activities and unexplained events. Rumours abounded of secret tunnels dug from the house to Oak Bay coves for the purposes of smuggling contraband – but the tunnels have yet to be discovered.

Joggers and dog along Cadboro Bay Road
(*Cadboro Bay Road, the longest in the municipality, takes its name from the Hudson's Bay Company's brigantine, Cadborough, a 72-tonne, 56-foot ship - the first to anchor in the bay in 1842. The Cadborough was lost 20 years later in a storm.)

Garden retreat along Cadboro Bay Road

Friday, September 21, 2007


Woke up to foghorns today and thinking I must try to get some photos. But in the meantime I thought this was rather neat. Love the primary colours and the odd placement of the horse...could be Magritte.

My photos of fog today.

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

The Socks Scandal....

Only in Britain...

I usually read a bit of the British newspaper The Telegraph online every morning. Lots of doom and gloom about the British economy these days. And then really important news like the BBC staff have been fixing contests and have betrayed the viewers' trust. I guess it says something good about British society when people are outraged about staff naming a cat themselves on a children's show because they didn't like the entries the children submitted. I am also rather bemused.

At the heart of the controvery is "Socks"...the new cat on the Blue Peter show.

My travelling friends....

Friends who are travelling at the moment seem to be getting good weather.

Fern and John are in Verona...sunny and 25 C.

Cindy and Dave are in Nice...also sunny and 25 C.

Kerry's in London...a mix of sun, cloud, & rain and 20 C.
Not bad for London!

Don and Elaine are in the Okanogan on a wine tour...mainly sunny and 19 C.

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Matisse mon amour...

I've always loved Matisse. Somehow I just relate to his work much more than Picasso although I do always find Picasso interesting. I guess it's a much more emotional response with Matisse. I don't know a whole lot about art but I recently read that many people think Matisse is as good as or even better than Picasso. I didn't realize Matisse was so highly considered in the art world.

Matisse's interpretation of Notre!

Sunday, September 16, 2007

Itty Bitty Book Review "Crow Lake"

"Crow Lake" by Mary Lawson

Lawson has quite a talent for keeping a suspenseful plot going but the novel turned out to be rather disappointing and pretty lightweight. I enjoyed some of the vignettes of minor characters like Bo and Daniel's parents but didn't think the main characters were that well drawn or convincing.

Still, was an enjoyable summer read.

Monday, September 10, 2007

Itty Bitty Book Review

"On Chesil Beach" by Ian McEwan

A quite short book (166 pages) but McEwan does his usual magic. A beautifully touching and ultimately rather sad story about a couple from different backgrounds who meet, fall in love, marry, and part. Their meeting and their parting really just turned on a few seconds that could have been different. I'm always fascinated by how much of life does turn on a few seconds that have life changing results.

Friday, September 07, 2007

Itty Bitty Book Review and more

"Persepolis 2" by Marjane Satrapi

This is the second volume following her first graphic novel that focuses on her growing up in Iran and then leaving Iran as a young adult. This volume is about her time in Austria and then back in Iran. I think I liked the first volume more...somehow the drawings were more charming but I enjoyed this one as well.

I just finished reading this book so I was thrilled to see that an animated film has been made and it opened TIFF. Satrapi is one of the directors! Good on her as it sounds like it was a great success. I hope it will be shown at the Palm Springs Film Festival in January when we're down there.

I now start my day on the computer by checking my cousin's photolog and the Daily Dose of ImageryThe "Daily Dose" fellow posts a photo every day which you can pick up with this link. To get the photo about the TIFF (Toronto Film Festival) you will have to pick up the Sept 7 post (use the previous day option). For the Sept 7 post he has some photos of the film festival and also a photo of Satrapi and the other director.

Thursday, September 06, 2007

Facebook Follies

Richard mentioned that one reason he has more or less given up his blog is that Flickr and Facebook do what he used the blog for...posting photos and keeping up with far flung friends. I've been using Flickr for a while so I decided to go on Facebook and see what it was all about. I been having quite a bit of fun with it so far trying out the various features and there are a number of groups for people over 50 so it's not just for the kiddies...

My Facebook Profile

Wednesday, September 05, 2007

More sunflowers

On my way to golf yesterday I picked up a couple of bunches of these wonderful sunflowers...still honour boxes all over Victoria. I guess there will come a day when these will disappear. A sad day that will be!

Tuesday, September 04, 2007

The strange behaviour of dogs

We had a lot of fun with the Soles clan on the weekend and were, of course, heartily welcomed by Holly and Ian. As you can see from the photo, Ian (the border collie) allows Holly, who is the guest, to have his usual place on the sofa. Apparently, Holly allows Ian her usual place when he visits her home!

P.S. Note Mary's wonderful Joe Norris in the background.

Monday, September 03, 2007

Where have they gone?

John posted this photo on his photoblog recently and I just loved it. Getting my dad to buy me popcorn from the vendors was a big deal when I was growing up and all part of the Vancouver experience. As John noted when he posted the photo, they all disappeared rather quickly. I wonder hot dogs and special coffees really push out popcorn?

Popcorn vendor at English Bay
Photo by John Denniston

Sunday, September 02, 2007

Birthday Celebration

Patty, Annette, and I finally got around to celebrating my birthday. It was great fun and worth the wait...they took me to the Victoria Yacht Club and presented me with a wonderful bottle of Sancerre and this super card. Merci beaucoup mes amies!

A perfect card!

Me and Annette

Patty and Annette on her bicycle...she puts us all to shame!

Itty Bitty Book Review..."Precious Bane"

"Precious Bane" by Mary Webb

This novel was written in 1924 and the time of the novel is set in the 19th century in a pastoral setting. It is quite reminiscent of Hardy's "Under the Greenwood Tree" although a much darker story more like his other novels in that respect. It's full of wonderfully descriptive passages of the countryside and country life and these do redeem the novel which is seriously flawed by sentimentalism and high melodrama. We could almost accuse Hardy of this and yet his writing manages to rise above it.

It's worth reading for the descriptions and the portrayal of a very strong female character. A passage from near the beginning to give a flavour of the novel:

"It was a wonderful thing to see our meadows at Sarn when the cowslip was in blow. Gold-over they were, so that you would think not even an angel's feet were good enough to walk there. You could make a tossy-ball before a thrush had gone over his song twice, for you'd only got to sit down and gather with both hands. Every way you looked there was naught but gold, saving towards Sarn, where the woods began, and the great stretch of grey water, gleaming and wincing in the sun."