Tuesday, 12 December 2017

Sunrise at Dead Mans Flat.

Darling Ben was sleeping in this morning, so I took myself out to watch the sun rise over the range behind us at about 8.45am. The temperature was a mild 2C, most unusual for here at this time of year. The wonderful early snow in November has long melted and the locals are very disappointed. I am over the moon with being with Ben and thrilled with the scenery that surrounds where Stuart and Kim live.


The setting moon.

Looking east through the silver birches.

Southwest, this peak was catching first light.



My point and shoot didn't quite focus on the moon taking a ride down the birch branch.

Clouds catching the sun.

Spot the Canadian flag.

Patience was required but I kept snapping to take memories home. 



I startled these tiny birds resting in the snowless grass but it was to my advantage.     





Forty-five minutes later, the sun appeared. So glad it wasn't a cold morning.

 I loved the scrunching sound of the crisp snow, still lying in the creek bed of the route I took to the Bow River. 

From day 1 of walking here, with Stuart and their Sheeba dog, Gunner, I have been spellbound by the beauty around me. This morning, in the first light, it was magical beyond belief.



Reflection and floating ice.


What a perfect camping spot!



Breakfast and Ben were calling, so I turned around and retraced my steps, delighting again in the sun's rays and the scrunching snow.

So Granny is now in Calgary Airport, waiting for her 5.35pm flight to San Fran and then home. She is sad and happy, as this little man has wrapped his arms around her heart forever.


The joy of being with Ben, Stuart and Kim, was multiplied by the beauty that surrounds where they live, just half an hour from Banff. Feeling truly blessed and glad that Santa's gift came early.

Tuesday, 28 November 2017

The Excitement Mounts

Wednesday 29 November

After a very early flight from Brisbane, this finds me waiting at Sydney airport to take a connecting flight overseas. 

Where and why you ask?

My son is married to a beautiful Canadian lass and they live near Banff, in Alberta. This announcement was their gift to me on my birthday in March.

Granny quickly got into sewing mode and sent this gift, for Baby Dobbin's room. You might just be able to begin to imagine my anguish, when the parcel still hadn't arrived in Canada after 7 weeks. I was about to shop for more fabric, when 4 days into the 8th week, it finally arrived. Such a relief!

Baby Dobbin's due date was the 26 September, but he was in no hurry to be greeted by his parents.
This is the view from his hospital room on the 2nd October. Benjamin Gordon Dobbin arrived in sunshine and immediately brought sunshine and love to his parents and Grandparents. 

I was out hiking [surprise, surprise] when the 'ding' on my phone alerted me to the wondrous news of his healthy arrival.

So you have one super excited, first time Grandma / Granny, impatiently waiting to board her flight to take her, to her darling grandson Benjamin and to a fortnight of unlimited cuddles. It will be so wonderful to share the joy that this precious bundle brings to his parents.

The suitcase is full of gifts for Ben from my amazingly supportive friends, so I had to pass on this delightful manger scene and the koala / santa sleigh. Maybe next year.


Now just a few pics from recent weeks, that have also brought a smile to my face. 

This pruned, Callistemon shrub, at a busy local intersection, caught my eye as I drove passed.  I just had to find a park and walk back with my I-phone. Nature is just amazing, isn't it? Its bottle brush like flower heads were emerging from the base of its trunk!


And in my garden..............



This blue wren dashed out of the shrubs onto the lawn, but didn't stay long enough for me to get a clear image. 


And on my early morning walk.




 Now to board my flight for the 13 hour 40 min flight to San Francisco, 4 hours off the plane and finally a 3-hour flight to Calgary, where Ben and family will be waiting for me! 

I would love to read your comment.

Saturday, 25 November 2017

River walk of Surprises

Wednesday 22 November

This week the Hungry Hikers chose a city walk, along the Brisbane River. Orley Park, West End was our starting point, after a coffee and Joc's decadent candy cane brookies.

[http://www.taste.com.au/recipes/candy-cane-brookies/jecoNnbd] 


We hadn't gone far when we happened upon our first, surprise piece of art, an aboriginal mural, part of a children's playground.

Then we spotted unusual netting sculptures, on an old river pylon.

Nature also contributed.                                               [Thanks Jocelyn for this pic.]

Nature contributed in more ways than one! 
Joc had found another creative idea for her photography. It required me to pose with this mangrove. It was quite easy to step down and have a firm footing on the river bank. What we didn't factor in was the passage of our ever so quiet Citycat ferry service. Suddenly, I was clinging to the tree to get my feet above the wash. Hmm, a nice surprise.


Further along, this stunning image of a baby painted on a pylon of a railway bridge, had us captivated for quite some time.

As seen, when later in the day, we walked along the opposite bank.

Another larger and more detailed aboriginal mural had been painted under our William Jolly road bridge.

Sitting on the bend of the river, a short distance from here is Goma, our gallery of modern art. Jocelyn had recently visited their new exhibition of a Japanese artist and suggested we should visit. An amazing detour!
  Yayoi Kusama - painter, sculptor, photographer, installation, performance and conceptual artist. This exhibition depicted her fascination with polka dots. Every room brought a 'surprise' as we were mesmerized by her creativity.




Title of this sculpture [1975-76] using sewn fabrics, household objects and paint was "Desire for Death".

Her polka dot pumpkins are exquisite and reflect the happy time of her childhood.


These panels cover a whole wall.


Above is one of the walls of the infinity mirror room. Hopefully in the photograph below you can perceive the room and the cube that has to 2 peepholes, taking one to infinity. 
[A woman standing at one peephole. Students kneeling at another.}

The view to infinity, through the peephole. 

Moving on to a change in Jayoi's style.



These rooms, representing a home, had blank walls when the exhibition opened in early November. Each viewer is offered a sheet of varying coloured and sized polka dots, to stick on the walls and furniture.




I've just found this image, of how the kitchen looked when the room was first opened. I am surprised by all I can see here, but is now covered in polka dots.



Another infinity room, with its yellow background and black dots, almost had me climbing the walls to get out, the impact was so strong. The view in the cube though was sensational and I longed to spend more time soaking up its beauty, but the queue had to move on.


Jocelyn's reflection on the walls of the infinity cube.

The view inside.


And back to reality. Note the yellow and green tones of the facade of the office tower at the end of the Kurilpa footbridge.

The same building as we neared. The surprise of nature's art again.

Then a surprise piece of 'living art', seen as we looked back across the river to Goma.

At present, Brisbane cities light poles are hung with banners for the very famous Ashes cricket series, between Australia and England. At the end of day 3 of the 1st match, of a 5 match series, [today, Sat.] the Aussies seem to have the upper hand. Looks like more time will be lost tomorrow in front of the big screen.

Another bridge, another mural.

The 'surprise' of a few drops of rain, but we were prepared.

Lunch was enjoyed at the heritage listed Regatta Hotel, built in 1886 and named for the rowing regattas held on this reach of the river.


A short Citycat ride took us across the river, back to Orly park. I took the train home and had one more 'surprise'. This mural was on the platform of one of the stations we passed through. I had not seen it previously.

Our motto, "It's not the distance. It's the journey.", rang very true today.  Yes, another memorable and fulfilling day, out and about, down under!

I would love to read your comment.