Sunday, February 27, 2011

More snow than predicted

Vancouver got more than the 1-3 cm predicted but seems to be melting quite quickly now so shouldn't be around too long. Last night we had a great visit with Bronwen and Darryl since they were in town and so they came over here first then we walked up Denman in the snow and had dinner at a Greek place. So nice to walk and not have to drive!

Saturday, February 26, 2011

Bookcases and a dresser...finally

We finally got some bookcases...thanks to John for helping us get them home from Ikea and thanks to the assembly guy who put them together as well as a dresser. And thanks to Donna who had the good suggestion to get lower ones and not use our high ones from home...a much better idea!

And a light dusting of snow.

It finally feels a bit cold

The rowers are not deterred by the cold.



With the glorious sunshine these past two days we've had the heat off and the windows open but today is cloudy and looks like this snow (1-2 cm) will finally arrive. Shouldn't be around long since it's warming up tomorrow it seems.

Derek took us to dinner at the Sylvia last night and it was his first time there...he liked it! We all had a great time and enjoyed the fabulous sunset with the freighters being the star of the show.

Thursday, February 24, 2011

No deep freeze yet...

It was warm and no wind and about 8 C on our walk. Hard to believe it's going to get so cold tonight.

Thank goodness the Sylvia Hotel is a heritage building as the mountains would be completely blocked by highrises.

Not a flake of snow here so far...

Apparently some snow is coming tomorrow. They are talking about -17 wind chills tonight. Kerry, who hales from Edmonton, might be a little impressed. When we were moaning about the possibility of -8 she laughed at us and said in Edmonton that would be considered a Spring thaw!

Elaine sent me the snow photo from Victoria yesterday. The other photo I took this morning from our balcony. Not even that cold yet...around 5C.

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Liveability ranking: Where the livin' is easiest | The Economist

This is no surprise to us! Vancouver ranked the most livable city in the world and we think we are in the very best part of the city.

Liveability ranking: Where the livin' is easiest | The Economist

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Lots of laughs with our old university friend, John.

We were very pleased to learn that John, an old university friend, has returned to live in Vancouver after living in London for a year. London has become so expensive and John is a real opera buff and it seems a good ticket is 175 pds. It made me think about the good old 70's in London when we saw Laurence Olivier in "Long Day's Journey Into Night" for 30 p (about 75 cents). This was our first play ever in London and very memorable. They made a video of the production a year later.

We also saw Glenda Jackson in "White Devil" and Alan Bates in "The Caretaker" for about a pound. Those days are sadly gone. I would have never thought in the 70's that one day I could just google and pick up images of these performances.

Glenda Jackson in "White Devil"

Laurence Olivier in "Long Day's Journey Into Night"

Alan Bates in "The Caretaker"

Monday, February 21, 2011

Slowly getting into the cellphone age...

I usually take my camera when I go out but sometimes just have my cellphone but don't remember I can take a photo with my phone. Figured that out again and took this photo today. Also, putting in phone #s and addresses in my phone since I can see that I will always have my phone with me and my address book is usually in a drawer at home. Step by step...

Sunday, February 20, 2011

Saturday night in the big city...

The evening began like something out of a Laurel and Hardy movie with various miscommunications and unexpected (well, unexpected for us being small town folk and not knowing about the hockey game etc.) heavy traffic that resulted in Kerry walking up Denman peering into cars that looked like the old Concorde trying to find us while we had actually made it to a parking spot on Robson and were in the Mustang since we don't have the Concorde any more. Cellphones saved the day with three way conversations between Donna, Kerry, and myself. I was glad to actually use the cellphone for calling since I've mainly been using it for things like a flashlight, alarm clock, watching Fawlty Towers, reading Anne of Green Gables...!

We did finally arrive at Neil and Donna's and had a wonderful time. Donna had prepared a super meal with a decadent chocolate dessert and of course Donna and Neil are ever the gracious hosts. Linda regaled us with amusing anecdotes and stories with Cec the perfect foil. Kerry brought her fabulous photos of their trip to Zanzibar and it was great to see the scenery and also all the super people photos especially of grand daughter Harmony who is becoming a real little girl now and will be two years old next week...what a sweetheart.

I completely forgot to take photos but I thought this photo I took the day before of Kerry was quite good even if the bright sunshine does give her a Santa Claus beard...


Donna posted some old photos of us on her blog. I bet these were taken with trusty old brownie cameras.

Donna's Report

Saturday, February 19, 2011

My first holds from the Joe Forte Branch Library

I got my first holds from our local branch library located on Denman. Interesting that Joe Fortes taught my mom and all sorts of poor urchins how to swim and probably saved many from drowning because they knew how to swim and he was around to protect them. Lots of kids in those days on their own on the beach while their parents tried to cobble together a living. I love the story my mom tells about how her and her friends and siblings spent their nickel return carfare on chips and told the driver they lost their money in the sand. They always got home.

From Wikipedia:

Seraphim “Joe” Fortes (b.?-4 February 1922) was a former sailor, originally from Barbados and then Liverpool, and a legendary figure in the early history of Vancouver, Canada.[1] After moving to the city in 1885 (the year before it was incorporated), he worked as a labourer and bartender (at the Sunnyside Hotel on Maple Tree Square in Gastown), then became a fixture at English Bay Beach, where he lived in a small cottage, acted as unofficial security guard, and taught hundreds of children how to swim. The city appointed the burly, friendly man, who had been a competitive swimmer in England, as its first official lifeguard at the turn of the 20th century.

When he died in 1922, Vancouver held a record-breaking funeral procession for Fortes, which was especially unusual because he was one of the city's few black citizens at the time. Even in the 21st century, Vancouverites remember him with a monument near the site of his home, a branch of the Vancouver Public Library, and a well-known downtown restaurant, named after him when it opened in 1985, one hundred years after he arrived in Canada.

Friday, February 18, 2011

First dining al fresco in our Van home in 2011

We woke up to a gorgeous sunny morning today (after heavy rain and thunder and lightning last night). Jim picked up a fish and chip take out to split(10 bucks) from Raincity Grill and we lunched on our balcony...accompanied by Kilkenny beer.

Kerry's in town and is coming for tea and cupcakes from the original cupcake place this afternoon.

Does it get any better than this?

Seth's Blog

I have pointed to this blog before and although it's usually business oriented he makes good general sense. This is the first comment I've read about art and I really liked it.

"Art is what we call...

the thing an artist does.

It's not the medium or the oil or the price or whether it hangs on a wall or you eat it. What matters, what makes it art, is that the person who made it overcame the resistance, ignored the voice of doubt and made something worth making. Something risky. Something human.

Art is not in the eye of the beholder. It's in the soul of the artist."

Seth's Blog

More visits by raccoons

We really trying to discourage these guys as cute as they are. Jim now has a stack of ice cubes to throw at them. They're clever little devils and one tried to open the window. I think it's probably been successful at some point. Seemed to know what he was doing.

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Donna's Report

My old school friend, Donna, has recently created a blog that I've been enjoying very much and I think some of my blog readers would enjoy it as well. Take a look!

Donna's Report

We get a nocturnal visitor...

A raccoon came exploring our balcony last night. I should have taken the flash off I guess...the only thing you can see are the paws!

Still having problems with this pesky back from golf in PS but went for a stroll in the late afternoon and stopped by the cupcake shop....yum. One didn't make the journey home...

Now for a nice cup of Harrod's tea that Carole brought back from London...I just found it stashed away here in a cupboard.

Monday, February 14, 2011

For Valentine's Day

What a delight not to be in the US this year at Valentine's Day. They make such a deal out of it and it becomes this huge hokey holiday.

"Love is patient, love is kind, it does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs."
— 1 Corinthians 13:4-5

Sunday, February 13, 2011

A super weekend...

We had a super weekend. Saturday, it began with a rather grey rainy day but our day was brightened by having lunch with Richard and hearing all about the fun he is having teaching in his practicum and all the cool creative things he's doing. Then, the weather brightened and some sun shone through.

We got up this morning to a run going on and cheering not only from people but from the local geese!

Today, Monique was in town and we passed a really enjoyable afternoon enjoying the view and a rosé de Bandol we had bought a while ago at Liberty Wine Merchants. It happened to be one of her favourites and a winery she had visited. Not quite like being in the south of France in Bandol together but pretty nice all the same!

Saturday, February 12, 2011

Real estate "goes crazy"..

This in the Vancouver Sun today...wonder if we'll be reading that in the TC in Victoria anytime can hope.

Looks like bidding wars are back in Vancouver and for the most unlikely places. "A ramshacle" place in East Vancouver got $800...more than $151 than the asking price. Another property in a better area was listed for $1.1 million and sold for $1.6 million in early January.

Friday, February 11, 2011

A super visit with Susan yesterday

It was really great to see Susan yesterday and we had a super visit...too bad Yorkshire is so far away but somehow we always pick up where we left off. A very dear friend. I got a real kick out of the the frogs in her B&B (Greystone). It seems sometimes guests turn up at breakfast in the slippers!

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Another beautiful morning greets us....

I'm so glad Susan, from Yorkshire, has had very good weather since her arrival Monday to see friends and family. We're really looking forward to our lunch today and catching up!

Wednesday, February 09, 2011

Back home again...

We arrived home to sunshine and quite warm weather and a gorgeous sunset. It's such a big sky here and my little camera doesn't do it justice. Is there any better location in the world...fabulous view and a fabulous city!

A very nice flight home...just under three hours (a lot better than three days driving). Took a little longer coming home than going. Headwinds I guess. I don't think there is a better departure lounge in the world. Where can you sit outside in the sunshine and have a wonderful view?

Tuesday, February 08, 2011

The sun sets on our trip....

Well, back home today. It has been a super trip and we really did hit the jackpot with weather. Three weeks of wonderful sunshine!

Monday, February 07, 2011

Disappointed with the Oscar Nominations

We watched "Never Let Me Go" the other night and thought it was the best movie we had seen in the past year, even better than "The King's Speech" and certainly better than the overhyped "The Social Network". Not one Oscar nomination and yet the three principle actors were wonderful and it was an intelligent and thoughtful story. What else would you expect from Ishiguro? Yes, it was bleak but we had both read the novel so knew that. Perhaps that was the problem.

Sunday, February 06, 2011

Another great lunch

We had a super lunch with Marvin and Erna at Escena Golf Resort today. Fabulous vistas and a gorgeous warm day. Eating up leftovers for our last few meals, packing tomorrow, Jim has a last round of golf, and then home. Guess I'll check the forecast and see what awaits us in terms of weather...

Saturday, February 05, 2011

Lunch at Jackalope Ranch

We had another great lunch in the sunshine at this fairly new place in Indio. It's pretty amazing inside and out and has seating for 589 people. Quite a venture to begin in a slow economy but they cater to weddings and large groups and probably will do quite well. It opened 2 years ago but we just heard about it from Erna today so thought we'd give it a try. In a review someone commented that the calamari wasn't large enough to share. The calamari as you can see from the photo is very copious and there must have been about a pound of it!