Posts Tagged ‘exploits’

Sitting in the morning sun……

Sun, glorious sun has finally arrived here on the West Coast! We have had continuous sunshine for over 2 weeks! We revel in it and the excitement is tangible. Everyone is outside. I soak up every opportunity to feel the warmth on my back. There is nothing better than a morning stroll along the boardwalk at the seafront. I watch the sea traffic out in the bay…..laden tankers, sleek yachts and majestic ocean liners. They glide by through the first narrows of the Burrard Inlet. Cheeky seaplanes swoop overhead and make their presence felt too. I have almost…..not entirely…forgiven Vancouver for the awful winter that we experienced this last year.

Watching the ships roll by….

Today was to be a different experience as I fancied to get closer to the water. I pulled my dusty bicycle out of storage and donned my ravishing helmet. The descent from our house is long and steep so I decided to NOT test the quality of my brakes. On the North Shore I jumped on the ferry.  My helmet irritated me as I hate the ‘hat- hair’ that it gives me. But this was definitely something that I was going to have to conform to. I tried to appear nonchalant, as if I done this many times before. But I stuck out like a sore thumb with my European Stroller with the basket on the front……in retrospect I am sure no one even noticed me! I must add that the cyclists I encountered that day had either rugged or very sleek bikes along with the most up to date bike attire. This was obviously a very serious sport!

On the seawall at Stanley Park

“You are being ridiculous!” I chastised myself and turned my attention to the view from the ferry across the bay.

It took me 2 hours to get from the city around Stanley Park and back with a few pit stops along the route. The pathway followed the seawall for most of the way. There were plenty of other bikers as this was obviously a favourite outride.

“On your left.” The cyclists shouted as they appeared from behind me. This unnerved me at first but I soon became accustomed to the ‘rules of the road.’ It was heavenly to breathe in the fresh sea air and to feel the cool breeze on my face. The bay was a hive of activity. I had to concentrate on where I was going as I was distracted by all the sea traffic.

The noon horn blew and it was time to stop for lunch. I sat at a sidewalk café with a wonderful vista over the yacht club. It was a sensory overload with some people watching thrown in for good measure.

Two thousand miles I roam just to make this dock my home….

There are times when I have to pinch myself. Where am I living? Yes, I am in Vancouver. During these times I reflect back on my life back in South Africa……for a minute on that seawall, I was racing down the hill from the Lonehill Koppie down to my school. But I return to reality…..

“It is time to head home.” My new Canadian friend had kept a watchful eye over this newbie on her bike adventure into the city. Thanks for showing me ropes! Little did I know there would be more to learn. I still needed to work out how to get my bike from the ferry onto the front of the bus. I was not about to attempt the hill ride up to our house.

There were limits to these exploits!

My bike has a new experience too……


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My doors are standing wide open and the fresh spring air wafts in.  It is perfumed by the abundance of the spring bulbs that have opened over the last few days. Josh and I run onto the deck at each opportunity. He spotted some rabbits this morning near the stream at the bottom of the garden. It drove him crazy! Poor chap, he would love to sink his teeth into them. He stands and quivers in anticipation, as he peers through the railings. But not on my watch, he won’t!  Meanwhile Peter and his mates bob about unhindered and enthusiastically sample all the new shoots. As long as they restrict their endeavors to the wild plants and don’t develop an interest in the nursery bought ones. We should be safe as the forest holds all sorts of delectables to lure them away. Wild snow drops seem to be the firm favourite and distract the nibblers from my ‘planted bounty.’

The sun is warm……I had almost forgotten what that feels like. Josh lies tummy-up and ‘bene in die lug.’ He is broken out of his soporific state  with the rabbit exploits. After he has reclaimed his turf he returns to the horizontal position again. We both love it! I bask as well but not in the ‘bene in die lug’ position. I prefer my feet up onto the deck railings. If I position myself to one side I can I stare over at the emerging foliage down in our ‘little forest.’


Josh laps up the Canadian sun.

Josh laps up the Canadian sun!


All this beauty comes at a price though, as I found out when I began the ‘spring cleanup.’ Every muscle and bone in my body ached! The cold winter had left its traces behind and we raked, collected and piled. Oh I so missed the help that I had back in South Africa! It was back breaking! Bend, stretch and bend again! Eina! Fortunately the whole family climbed on board and in no time the drudgery of the clean up was over. Now I am left to survey our wonderwork from the deck. I luxuriate in my short reprieve. This is my favourite part! At least the muscles and bones are given a break for a few weeks. Locals insist that no planting can happen before the weekend of 24 May. So I have to accept the local knowledge and restrain myself. All I want to do is get out there and plant my summer colour.




But instead I sit and stare and enjoy the arrival of spring. I fill my head with thoughts of summer……. salads, cool drinks, sandals and open top cars. The warmth draws visits from family and friends too.

Oh role on SUMMER!


Sun in the face and wind in the hair!

Sun in the face and wind in the hair!





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