Thursday Doors – Victoria

This week we’re taking a look at a couple of doors at Hatley Castle, a National Historic Site located on the grounds of Royal Roads University.

The property of this historic site includes several buildings and formal gardens, as well as first and second-growth forest where one can find large Douglas fir and western red cedar.

Unfortunately, at the time of our visit we were unable to tour the interior or visit the gardens. But that’s fine, because the entrance and exterior were worth the stop.

The first door we’ll look at is at the covered main entrance. There are several things going on, from the old iron hinges to the decorative archway with its faces.

Here’s a closer look at the intricately detailed door handles, and the borderline creepy door bell panel.

The second door feels a bit like a secret, hidden back from the main facade of the castle and up a few stairs.

I like the mix of stained glass, carved wood and impressive handle.

Fun fact..

Hatley Castle is a popular location for filming, and has been used in many movies and television programs – Spider Man, X-Men, The Professor, Smallville, Supernatural, MacGyver.. just to name a few.

Have you visited Hatley Castle? Comments below.


Thursday Doors is a weekly event facilitated by Dan. If you’re interested in participating, check out Dan’s blog.

Abbotsford Murals

Commonly known for being home to the popular Abbotsford Airshow, as well as cheap gas prices, I recently discovered that Abbotsford is also home to a small collection of brightly coloured murals decorating the city’s historic centre. Naturally I dragged my husband on a walk so I could snap some photos.

Created by non-profit, I-Lead Abby, this mural is said to represent openness (henna) and the city’s Indo-Canadian community, as well as growth (lotus flowers).

From artist Tara-Lynn Kozma-Perrin: “Before colonization, two streams used to converge in the area where the mural is today. The patterns in the mural resemble fish scales and reed mats which pay homage to the history of the land and its Indigenous inhabitants.”

A timely reminder to all of us.

From lead artist Sean Karemaker: “Nature continues to humble us. As a species, humans must realize we are completely interconnected with the entire ecosystem.”
The large mural depicts how everything in the natural world is connected, from sea to sky, mountains to tiny mushrooms, furry critters to lush groves.

Strangely I wasn’t able to find any information on this large mural, so I can’t share any additional insight.

This mural was at the centre of controversy earlier this Summer. Prior to public outrage, and subsequent rework, it included the quote, “Make Abbotsford great again.”. Many found it to be an unsavory choice given its similarity to one of a “certain soggy Cheeto’s” favourite sayings.

Artist Ericka Walker worked closely with members of the Royal Canadian Legion (Abbotsford Branch #15) to create this 60′ mural. Many reasons is meant to encourage thought and dialogue about the countless factors surrounding war. For example, reasons to enlist, or not. Reasons to commemorate or be critical of war efforts.

Some businesses got into the spirit with their own murals, like this one next to the entrance of Sound of Music Sales.

Karl’s Meats is a family-run local Dutch delicatessen and butcher shop. Hence the wooden clogs in the window.

Another music themed mural, this one on the side of Temple Music Academy.

The historical centre of Abbotsford is really cute, and I’m hoping to visit again in the near future to check out some of the local businesses.

North Vancouver Street Art – Lonsdale Quay

Along an exterior wall at North Vancouver’s Lonsdale Quay Market you’ll find a 100 foot long mural titled Coastal Energy.

Designed by local students and painted by artist Dennis Creighton, Coastal Energy is part of a city-wide series of public art called Studio in the City.

Its purpose is to give local youth the opportunity to apprentice in the arts, while working on various canvases throughout North Vancouver.

If you’ve visited Vancouver as a tourist, chances are you’ve seen this mural. Lonsdale Quay is often a stop on visitor’s lists of local places to check out.

Bonne journée!

Marla

What is a Weekend?

Are you familiar with the scene in Downton Abbey where Dame Maggie Smith’s character asks, “What is a weekend?”? Her delivery is perfection.

While the scene touches on the ‘modern’ invention of leisure time (for the period), not to mention the obvious class distinction between floors, I can’t help but ask myself that very question this morning.

What is a weekend?

As many of you will know, I’m currently working from home. Our apartment is tiny, not unlike most in Downtown Vancouver. My makeshift desk is set up 2 metres from our bed. It’s also 2 metres from our couch. I’ve only just realised the irony in the spacing.

Because we’re in voluntary lockdown, practicing social distancing when we pop out for necessities, I’m basically stuck in the same space 7 days a week. One day blends into the next. Weekdays turn into weekends without any noticeable change.

My question to those working from home as well, what are you doing to mark your weekend? What helps you to feel like you’re not stuck on an hamster wheel 24/7? If you have any suggestions, please comment below.

I thought I’d share some photos of flowers I snapped during a lunchtime stroll earlier this week. I forced myself to get out for some fresh air and sunshine. If you’re permitted to do the same where you are, I highly recommend it.

Spring has finally sprung!

Bonne journée!

Marls

Street Art – New Westminster

It’s Friday! After another trying week, I’d like to share what I believe is the perfect spirit lifter to take us into the weekend.

It’s bright, colourful and happy – just what the doctor ordered (along with social distancing and washing our hands, of course).

I discovered this mural accidentally, but fell in love with it immediately.

Continue reading “Street Art – New Westminster”

Sea to Sky

Like many people around the globe, I’m finding myself feeling suffocated with cabin fever. I miss being able to leave the house without an action plan and spare disposable gloves shoved into my purse just in case. I miss seeing the flowers and trees come to life like they always do at this time of year. But mostly, I’m sick of staring at the same walls of our tiny apartment day in and day out. It could be much worse, I fully appreciate, but I’m really starting to struggle.

Continue reading “Sea to Sky”

Vancouver Street Art – Mount Pleasant

Here are a few more murals to, hopefully, add some fun and brightness to your day as we weather this crazy storm of uncertainty together.

This last one depicts an old hamburger stand that stood on Kingsway for decades. It has since moved, but those of us of a certain age will remember the iconic Vancouver landmark that was Wally’s Burgers.

Bonne journée!

Marla

Vancouver Street Art – Mount Pleasant

As I promised yesterday, I’m back with a few more murals that I recently found.

Do you have a favourite? Comment below. Mine is of the crushed plastic bottle. At first I was annoyed by the parked car, but I think I actually like it being in the shot to give scale to the sprawling mural.

Bonne journée!

Marla

#WFH

Today was my first official day of #WFH (working from home). It also marked the first day in weeks where I didn’t have to discuss ad nauseum these troubling and confusing times. I realise that I’m one of the fortunate ones though, and I worry about those who can’t do the same.

I recently found this mural. It confuses me, not unlike much of the news coverage these days.

Stay safe, friends.

Bonne journée!

Marla

Fire!

It was September 16th of the year 1868, and a long hot Summer day in the gold rush town of Barkerville. According to the story passed from one generation to the next, that afternoon saw a man make an unwanted move on a woman at the back of Adler and Berry’s New Fashion Saloon. A scuffle ensued and a stovepipe was knocked over, resulting in a fire. Within minutes the town of Barkerville was in flames.

Continue reading “Fire!”