Saturday, May 26, 2012

Wandering in the Valley

I wrote to friends last week that life lately has been head down, bum up mode, slogging through the days. Can't say that I've been all that overwhelmed with work and other pursuits but the month has slipped away in a blur nonetheless.

Kelowna Pacific Railway line, looking south in the Spallumcheen Valley.
 I was tootling home on backroads Saturday two weeks ago after work. The intent was to take photos for the cover of our weekly real estate guide should nothing else be available - that's a whole nuther story. Thought you might like to see a few views of sights hereabouts.

The photo above was taken on the L&A Cross Road, between Vernon and Armstrong. It's a short connector between two highways.

In Spallumcheen, looking northwest towards Grandview Flats, Mt. Swanson in the background.

Hwy 97N, my route home to Falkland, is in the photo above, out of sight. It runs around the base of the slope on the left side of the photo, and then around the south side of the range in the background of the photo, back behind those hills.

Morning coffee takes on a class note when drunk from a proper cup.

When Bryan and I went to Germany for the first time, a few years ago, we spent 2.5 days with Ursul Otto, Claudia's mother (Claudia's one of our non-biological 'daughters'). Ursul took us on a whirlwind tour of Thuringia including a delightful horse-drawn carriage tour of Weimar. Most know it as the home of Goethe, Schiller and the Bauhaus Movement. We learned it is also the home of the oldest gingko biloba trees in Europe.

Ursul bought me a coffee cup, saucer and plate with a ginko leaves pattern,  a lovely reminder of the visit. Getting them safely packed and home via the 'gentle' hands of airplane luggage handlers was a testiment in itself!

For the longest time, the set decorated a shelf in the front room. Then I thought, that's silly. It's meant to be used so I should use it. And now I do. On early mornings when the day is best started snuggled under a quilt with my nose in a book and strong coffee at hand, this has become the vessel for that life-sustaining beverage.

I also employ one of my grandmother's fine china tea cups for my evening tea. It has a civilizing effect, I think.

Sunburn, windburn and laugh lines. To hell with aging gracefully.
Bryan is still up north and so the house is suffering benevolent neglect in favour of the yard. After 8.5 or 9 hours in an office in front of a computer, this farm girl takes each and every opportunity to get dirt embedded under her fingernails.

I was outside all one sunshiney and windy day, and the results can be seen on my face, freshly showered and scrubbed clean of its debris. There's catching up to do after last weekend, a significant portion of which was spent cracking beers at the annual rodeo.

In the last five years, the beer garden crew has become "Carrie's Curling/Family team." Most everyone working in the beer garden is on our curling team, a member of Carrie's family or good friends of either/both. Not a bad deal, really, because it's group she can count on to show up and stay, work hard, have fun and provide great customer service. I didn't see much of the rodeo events nor anything of the parade this year but that's OK.

It rained Monday night so I spent most of Tuesday rounding up dust bunnies, washing kitchen cupboards and plowing through a basket of laundry. Oh, and reading. And visiting Adrienne and Ken. It was a full and satisfying day.

The sun returns this weekend, and the garden is an explosion of growth. The sun has taken the chill out of the air (was only 2C at 5:30 am) so excuse me while I head outdoors!