Thursday, July 31, 2014

Margaritaville at English Bay

A wonderful warm swim then back for strawberry margaritas….

Fireworks courtesy of France

Last night France put on the show and while it was very colourful,  it wasn't particularly varied or innovative.  Pretty good all the same.

With this wonderful weather it seemed like a good time for a tall cool drink.  We've had varying success with margaritas but I found this recipe that seemed like a winner and also dead easy.  They turned out great and all ingredients can be on hand.   Looking forward to a repeat after our ocean swim this afternoon.  The water was just amazingly warm yesterday to the point that some of the "old timers" were complaining it wasn't' refreshing enough.  No problem for us….just reminds us of wonderful warm swims in the Mediterranean in the south of  France.

The "hordes" being swept out by the police.

Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Bar-b-q chez Dick and Susan

A perfect night for a bar-b-q in Dick and Susan's lovely back yard.  Good food,  good company,  and lively conversation….even touched on religion and politics and remain friends!

Monday, July 28, 2014

Wonderful visit as usual with Katie, David, and Liz

We always have so many laughs and conversation about everything and of course,  as per tradition,  all the "how cute Richard was as a little"kid stories.  At age 5,  Richard was ring bearer for Katie and David and Liz (Katie's sister) used to babysit Richard.  Katie and Liz are daughters of our friends Eric and Susan.  Katie and David have lived in London for many years and we have spent many good times with them there.   Even though it's pretty much just once a year we see them now,  we pick up just where we left off.  So glad they're having great weather and left good weather in England too.

We all missed you this year, Richard, and they all send their love.    (very hectic for Richard at work at the moment)

 Liz,  Katie,  David.

 Jim,  Liz,  Katie.

Liz, Katie, David, moi.

Sunday, July 27, 2014

Itty Bitty Book Review: "The Imperfectionists"

Covers from around the world….in 30 countries.  I find it quite interesting to see what other countries do with book covers.  Could be a book in and of itself.



US and Canada

I really loved this book…on a roll at the moment with good books.  It's about the demise of a print newspaper and really the current situation of all print newspapers.  I have a hold on his next one that deals with bookstores…another endangered species.  Can't wait to read that.

Will the world continue to turn when we no longer have bookstores and print newspapers?

Saturday, July 26, 2014

Wonderful fireworks display tonight…it was the USA…fabulous!

The USA really did a great job on the fireworks tonight and the 400,000 odd people really enjoyed it.  I don't think I've ever heard quite so much applause and cheers.  So,  for our American friends…your country did you proud tonight and it was very appreciated.

My photos of the fireworks are never very good…just take a couple quick because I want to watch them "live"  not through a viewfinder.

Jim enjoying some of the pre fireworks shows.

Police helicopter surveying all the boats that come.

Fireboats are around and put on a show.

And the show begins!

Celebration of LIght Fireworks tonight.

People starting to fill up the beach and park,  buskers,  art floggers,  food trucks,  and even a tropical bird getting a shower.  And we scored some free sunglasses from Honda and some chapstick from LG 104.3 FM

Now for an ocean swim….haven't been in the last few days as cooler and some rain.

Be great to see Jesulas in Palm Springs!

Jim's Spanish colleague from Almeria is thinking of coming to LA to do some research and then visiting us in Palm Springs this winter.   It would be really great to see him.  He was such an excellent host in Spain and gave us a wonderful tour of the Alhambra among other things.

He sent us a photo of him at a James Joyce conference at the University of Utrecht.  He's the hardest working scholar we've ever met.

Friday, July 25, 2014

Painting again….thanks to Susan, who is a good sport to try this with me!

I saw this Groupon deal at Raw Canvas…a place in Yaletown where you get tapas and drinks and then go downstairs to paint a canvas….all materials including smock provided.  Sort of like what I saw in Palm Springs only instead of a night where you book and everyone does the same painting under the direction of a teacher,  you do what you want,  when you want.  I like this format better.

I have been avoiding painting partly because I seem to think I should finish some things I started.  Very unlike me…just an excuse.  So,  I have this idea of just doing something quick and what the heck and also using colours not in my usual palette.  Palm Springs is a perfect subject so I laid down an aqua background and next I'll just do things I love about PS in a helter skelter way with no plans to put it on my wall.

I think this will be very freeing and I may do something different for our session at Raw Canvas.

Stay tuned...

Like an Irish pub last night...

An Irish group performed last night at the Sylvia…Tim Readman,  originally from County Durham.  He writes pretty much all of his stuff I think.  No traditional crowd pleasers but very enjoyable all the same.

Thursday, July 24, 2014

Canada Geese...

Always after a good rain the Canada Geese come to our lawn in front to feed…today, pretty much all day.  They go back to Lost Lagoon which isn't really very far but they seem to like to walk rather than fly….saves energy, I guess, and also probably a bit difficult because of the trees.   We often see them crossing the road and sometimes they take the crosswalk but today they weren't quite in the crosswalk but in an area where they could still see the traffic.  Quite  a lot of them went across while I happened to be on the balcony and I figured I'd missed them but got my camera anyway.

Then I saw one walking back across the road…what's up with that?  Then I saw there were a about 15 more geese who hadn't crossed the road and were obviously nervous about it.  Finally they began,  no doubt because of this one who came back for them.  As they were crossing, one started to turn back and this goose  herded it over the road!  No turning back. All quite fascinating.

The photos don't quite show the whole spectacle.

Rooftop camper

I liked this photo from John's blog.  Yes,  a pretty good bet owners are young!

July 14th, 2014 — This older Honda Civic with its unique rooftop camper was parked near Jericho Beach in Vancouver. Odds are the owners are young.

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Another electronic first...

I deposited a cheque today via Vancity's mobile app…cool!  About the only time I need to go to the physical bank is to cash a cheque so now even fewer trips to the bank.  Stephen Leacock would be pleased!

I see the NFB film  animation of Leacock's "My Financial Career" is on YouTube.  I used to show this to students but funnily enough I don't remember it being in colour.

How it works

  1. Tap the DEPOSIT icon in the Vancity mobile app
  2. Select an account to deposit the cheque into
  3. Photograph the cheque on both sides
  4. Confirm the deposit details and tap “confirm”.
Once you tap confirm, the cheque is immediately submitted for processing and the
funds will appear in your account*.

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Pizza night with Derek

Great fun to see Derek yesterday and after a good visit Jim updated Derek on the open textbook progress.  Great stuff!

Derek was supposed to ask me something from Mary but forgot.  I tracked it down.  Mary wanted some photos of Oscar,  the neighbourhood cat that adopted us for a couple of years in our Victoria home,  because they were thinking of using his lovely grey colour of fur for the stucco on the new house they have bought (and are moving into this week…whew…I know they'll be glad when that's over!)  and the eye colour for the door.  Mary thought the eyes were green but actually they are more of a yellow…also perfect.

From Mary:

I'm not surprised that oscar's eyes are that chartreuse shade that is my favourite--like my bedroom walls.  On the colour wheel the gray counterbalances it; in nature oscar is perfection.

Itty Bitty Book Review: "The Orenda" by Joseph Boyden

Wow…quite a book.  Not surprisingly considering what Boyden accomplished in his first novel:  Three Day Road.  I took it to Palm Springs but wasn't really in the mood to deal with all the torture scenes.  Somehow you get over this and the story is just really quite wonderful.  An amazing accomplishment and I'm pleased to see it won the "Canada Read"  "book that will change our nation"  award.  It just might be "the great Canadian novel"  that I kept expecting Margaret Atwood to write.

In Boyden's words:

“I wanted the average Canadian not to think of First Nations before first contact as a bunch of Indians huddling around the fire, waiting for civilization to discover them and help them,” said Boyden. “I wanted Canadians to understand that long before the Europeans arrived there were incredibly complex and beautiful societies and complicated societies already here.”

Sunday, July 20, 2014

A dreary day….good thing it's "Christmas"...

Not much of a day today but the greyness was brightened by this sailboat that passed by the fireworks barge and by the thought of my Artist Trading Card meeting…always great fun and I come home with goodies.