Wednesday, 12 December 2018

Calgary - December 2018

Jane's brother, Stephen, has played Scrooge at Calgary Theatre for the last 25 years. It's been on Jane's bucket list for years to see him play the role. This was the year. We were there on opening night, with it's special touches, including a backstage tour with Stephen.

We had a delicious dinner at a Turkish restaurant before the performance, compliments of Stephen's partner, Michael. 

The play was first class... professional and heartwarming. No cameras were allowed during the performance, but I grabbed a couple at permissible times. We had perfect seats. Before the show...

Jane and Stephen and a cutout of Stephen. The similar B&W tops were purely coincidental. :)

After the performance... Stephen removed his wig and asked the audience to participate in "Toonies for Turkeys" to help the less fortunate in Calgary. Stephen initiated the idea early in his career with the help of the cast. With personal and corporate donations, they have raised $2 million over the years. Wow. 

We stayed at a hotel near downtown Calgary. We'd stayed there before but to our happy surprise this time, we had a couple rabbits join us. They're domestic escapees or were set free by someone, but we loved seeing them. We started to look for them every time we went outside.

Suckers as we are for wildlife, we quickly found... no surprise... that they enjoyed muffins and buns which we gladly shared. 

Our rental in the hotel lot. I hate white cars. But white on white is kinda cool. I like to try different rentals... cheaper than buying one... this one was cool in some ways, a pain in the ass in others.

While Stephen was performing, Michael took us to a couple sites in Calgary that we hadn't seen. This is Lougheed House. Some of you will remember the name. An elegant time, when life was simpler. Not necessarily better, but simpler.

A "Christmas Tree" in the house. Not one we'd want in our homes, but clever we thought.

A picture of a picture on the wall. Reminded me of my childhood. A Lionel isn't it?

A cozy nook in the house. Jane loved it. I liked it. :)

The living room.

Michael asked if we'd like to see the new library. I thought sure. But I sure didn't expect this. This is the entrance.

I'm always looking around, so I spotted this scene outside a library window. My kind of diversion. The green bikes are rentals. Pick up, pay, drop off. Or I guess it's pick up, drop off, pay. Whatever.

The library is an architectural marvel.

Jane & Michael on the stairs.

No high shelves... reachable by all.

Levels upon levels. Lots of computers and quiet areas. No crowded shelves. An incredible design. They've taken the 'open concept' to heart.

This is no ordinary library. It will win awards and be a second level tourist attraction in my opinion. But then again, it cost $250 million. That's a quarter of a billion!

Is this what libraries in today's large cites have to do to attract us in the digital age? Maybe. If you go to Calgary, check it out. I don't think you'll be disappointed.

How things can change. I always took my 'monster' camera on trips before. Not this time. These are all taken with my shirt-pocket point-and-shoot. On an overseas trip I think I'll still take the monster, but I may have to reconsider that even. Maybe it depends on where we go. We'll see.

Bob & Jane

Sunday, 21 October 2018

Algonquin Park - 2016 & 2018
Through Jane's Eyes

I've been meaning to do this for a long time... share some of Jane's pictures. So this post is just of Jane's captures.

We often find different subjects as we roam with our cameras. Jane often captures things I miss or that I wouldn't have thought of. When we do shoot the same subject, Jane's results are often better than mine. She has a good eye. The following are from this year.

Where we stayed... Spring Lake Resort, 15 minutes from the park.

Jane said I was in 'relaxation mode'. I was. My bald head dominates too much of the image. :)

Oxtongue Rapids

I love this one... at Oxtongue Rapids too.

At Peek-a-Boo Rock at the Dorset Tower.

View from Peek-a-Boo Rock.

Some of the more ambitious visitors walk up to the tower... a very pretty walk.

At Ragged Falls.

Ragged Falls without yours truly blocking the view. 

Some of the trails are root-bound in spots. You have to look down more than up as you walk.

Canoeists on Canoe Lake.

In a playful mood. I moved this rock a little further into the woods. It was in the way. 

Does everyone from the south stop at Robinsons General Store on the way home... maybe on the way up? We always do. We never come out empty-handed either.

Jane found this tour boat docked across from Robinsons.

The rest of the images are Jane's from our previous visit in 2016. We stayed at the lake but the colours we caught weren't nearly as good as this year.

Jane is able to get some road shots as we drive along Highway 60 through the park. The windshield is clean but not perfect.

Diving into the dip.

Reflections at Oxtongue Rapids.

The red maple above the river makes this look like lava to me. 

A collapsed inukshuk? 

Algonquin attracts lots of artists. This one took a short break from her work as we chatted with her at Tea Lake Dam, for those who know the area.

A pretty nice looking pine, considering that it's a fake. Bell Telephone has disguised their cell-phone antennas in it. You can see them at the top if you look carefully... you may need to enlarge the image.

The first time we spotted it at Whisky Rapids Trail, we noticed the bottom of it... otherwise we probably would have missed it.

A pretty spot near Oxtongue Rapids.

A shot we both seem to take on every visit to Canoe Lake.

Are their days numbered? This one is just in the woods at the Canoe Lake parking lot. It was still there this year.

We were alone on this lake with this pair of Mallards. After they ate some of the corn we gave them, they were thirsty.

View from the deck at the visitor's center, looking east. The only real color there is just in front of the deck.

At the old airfield. Bear country, though we've never seen one there yet. They come for the blueberries, the reddish shrubs in the background.

I don't remember seeing this one but Jane captured it for me. 'Trumpet Fungus'... my name for it.

Heading back to our hotel in 2016.

I'll post more of Jane's in the future maybe. It took me long enough to do this set. :)

The photographer gave me permission to publish these before she checked them out. :)


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