I believe we can be anyone

To be nobody but yourself in a world which is doing its best to make you like everybody else is to fight the hardest battle you can fight--but never stop fighting! E.E. Cummings

Thursday, August 22, 2013

Day 2: Weiner and Bun

When I arrived late Saturday night, I was more than ready to unpack, settle in and go to bed early.  John's brother Rob and his friend, Tracy were staying for the weekend as well.  They decided to go downtown to check out some bands, but I just wanted to relax and so I did.
At first, I felt a little nervous for a couple of reasons.  First, I hadn't seen John in 18 years. And second, I'm now staying at his place with his brother and someone I only just met.  As open as I am to meeting new people, I was still out of my comfort zone.  Having said that, Rob and Tracy were very nice and gracious, as was John.
Sunday morning, we went out for breakfast.  Of course, with my limiting food choices, this proved to be a challenge, but I worked around it the best I could.
Downtown Kelowna on the weekend is a busy place with various activities:  the craft market, people walking around the boulevard along the lake, shopping, having coffee or lunch, riding their bikes, doing tourist activities or laying on the beach.  Summer is always busy, but particularly in the Okanagan.  It is THE Mexico or Florida of Canada.  Everyone wants to go to the Okanagan and it's no wonder why. 

"Graffitti" painted on the side of this building close to the lake.
The old Willow Inn that stood here behind me for 81 years is now a parking lot.  http://www.castanet.net/news/Kelowna/45203/Lights-out-for-the-Willow-Inn 
Many fine memories there.  All things come to an end eventually though.
 Along the Okanagan Lakeshore.

As Rob and Tracy took off to meet with another friend, John and I spent some time on the beach.  It was a little too busy for me with traffic and people, but still nice. 

In front of the "Sails" sculpture. 

City Park and the craft market which happens on the weekends generally.

John called another friend of ours, Weiner (no that's not his real name, it's actually Wayne) to see if he was out on his boat.  By chance, he just happened to be going out on the lake.  Next thing we know, within a half an hour, we're on a boat on the lake on a hot summer day!  Sweet!

 Weiner and me on his boat.  It's another picture perfect day.

The condo on the lake Weiner used to own.

Later that night, we end up going for dinner at the Golf Club with Rob, Tracy and John's parents Ben and Joyce Lee.  Ben used to be a City Councillor for the Rutland area of Kelowna.  He was affectionately known as the "Mayor of Rutland" and has a park named after him.  Pretty cool.   Check out his page here.  http://www.kelowna.ca/CM/page491.aspx  They are quite lovely people and still live in the same house they have lived in for years.  As people get older, this isn't always the case. 

The evening came to a fairly early close which was fine by me.  I was about to embark on a workshop over the next two days and didn't need to do anything too crazy, yet.

Friday, August 16, 2013

Day 1: The Drive

I decided to take a road trip to Kelowna to a:  take a workshop and b:  to reconnect with a place I used to live at for 2 years over 18 years ago.  Kelowna has changed and grown a LOT!!  It is now a mini metropolis and it was quite a culture shock driving into this city that was now somewhat unrecognizable to me, albeit at first.
The longer I stayed, the more comfortable it began to feel again; the old familar places became recognizable to me once more.  I visited more new places and tourist attractions on this trip of 11 days than I did when I lived there.  It's funny how life and work stopped me from exploring the tremendous beauty around me.  Sure I did see some of it, but I needed to be a tourist in the city I used to live in to see so much more of what Kelowna has to offer. 
It was a tremendously fun trip.  The only regret is my partner Rick wasn't able to get time off of work to go with me.  So, off I went on an adventure of my own.
In Kelowna, I reconnected with a friend named John that I hadn't seen in 18 years.  I had the pleasure of his sight seeing hospitality.  I was also lucky enough to stay in the spare room of his condo in downtown Kelowna.  He guided me to places in Kelowna I wasn't aware of.  I had a list of other things and places I wanted to do and see as well.   Funny enough, I also showed him things in Kelowna he wasn't aware of.  It was a win win situation for both of us.
I spent some time with John, met some new people and also took time for myself to explore, play and have fun.  The weather was picture perfect.  It was 28 to 35 farenheit every day that I was there.  Now THAT'S summer.  I love the sun and the heat.
I plan on sharing my journey with you over the next few blog posts as I took so many photos that one blog post would never cover it.  I am a bit of an amateur photographer and I enjoy sharing the beauty of how I see the world through my eyes.  Enjoy!

On the road again.  It's been a LONG time since I have been on a LONG road trip.  Driving for 8 hours certainly can have its challenges physically.  I'm not in my 20s anymore.  This shot is just past Lake Louise on the highway.

A photo of me by the side of the highway for a quick rest.
  A bear!  A bear!  I was wondering why all of those cars stopped by the side of the road!
I stopped in Golden when this woman and her son walked by with this cute little guy!    He was quite relaxed as you can see and didn't mind me taking a photo.  Unfortunately, I don't remember what breed this is but I HAD to get a shot of him.  He's SO adorable!
A popular rest stop by Mara Lake.  I love the drive along this lake even with the amount of curves that it has.
Just a half an hour or so from Kelowna now.  I thought this scenery was pretty.  I'm almost there now!  Whoopee!