Saturday 7 June 2008

Trails and Visiting

It was 30C (86F) by 10 a.m. today. The day started off with a shower but it was sunny by the time I got up and went for my walk. By 10 a.m. we were heading out to do a trail and feed some critters. I had a whole bunch of stale bread to feed them.

Our first stop was the Sarsparilla Trail. We walked a ways on it but didn't see any critters just a lot of trees and an interesting jack pine forest area.

From there we went back to the Jack Pine Trail as that's where we've seen most of the critters. There weren't nearly so many out today as the first time we were there, probably too hot. Someone had already been there and there was bird seed and peanuts around but no critters. They must be full! We saw a couple of chipmunks and black and red squirrels and this little toad but that was about it. I spread my stale bread around. I'm sure they'll get around to eating it at some point. It was pretty warm out there if it hadn't been for the breeze it would have been unbearable.

This tree looks like it's right out of the Wizard of Oz movie.

Toad on a leafGordon at the picnic table

It was nearing noon at that point so we had the picnic lunch that I packed at the picnic area at Jack Pine Trail. We lost the sun for a brief period and the mosquitoes came out while we were having our lunch.

One of the health food stores, Kardish was having a 20% off sale today so we stopped by. There was something I was interested in but it was already on sale and she wouldn't give me the extra 20% off on it so I didn't buy it. I think I can get a better deal at GNC.

From there it was home where I sat outside and read then came in to have a nap. Couldn't sleep so started reading some blogs instead.

When I went out to take the trash to the dumpster I noticed our neighbours were sitting outside so I went over and spent and hour or so with John and Jan who are from Sault Ste Marie, Ontario. They're here for the summer as one of their sons lives here. It was nice sitting under their awning as there was a nice breeze, other than that it was 31C (88F).

Friday 6 June 2008


I left fairly early this morning to pick up the remainder of Gordon's medicine that they didn't have on Friday last week but I started out at Carlingwood Shopping Centre spending a couple of hours there. I justify it by calling it Mall walking! I didn't buy much only what we needed. Then on to Bayshore Shopping Centre only to find out that his medication still hasn't come in so the pharmacist is going to call the company on Monday and let me know why it's on backorder and if we'll be able to get it. An antifungal drug isn't all that common up here, I guess.

One of the items on my list to get was corn tortillas. They are hard to find up here unlike the southern U.S. I had brought enough back with us from the south to last until now so I stopped where I usually get them (we have to get them at health food stores here) and they no longer carry them. Bummer! All sorts of thoughts were going through my mind like I'm going to have to make bread every week or try to order them on line but I thought of another health food store and stopped there and they had them, thank goodness! So, I bought three packs just in case. The only problem is they take up a lot of freezer room.

I was gone a long time today from about 10:30 a.m. to nearly 3:30 p.m. so my back is very tired!

Photos today are ones I took on my morning walk yesterday of the wild roses.

Today was cloudy but hot and humid and it looks like the remainder of the weekend will be the same with rain in the forecast as well.

Thursday 5 June 2008

We Play Tourist

After breakfast this morning, Gordon said he wanted to go to Gatineau Park so we were out of the RV by 9:45 a.m. On our way, we stopped at Bate Island which is a good sized island in the middle of the Ottawa River. The Champlain Bridge which takes you from Ottawa, Ontario to Gatineau, Quebec passes over it and there is an exit to get off. There used to be a really nice restaurant on the island but they couldn't get insurance because of being on an island (no fire hydrants) however there is a whole big river there. Anyway, they have now torn down the restaurant and the whole island is a park. We saw lots of critters on the island - geese and their babies, ducks, groundhogs, squirrels, chipmunks and of course, the rare seagull (LOL).

Lots of baby geese today

This little chipmunk was munching on tree seeds down by the Ottawa River.

This photo is not cropped. This groundhog sat right up and posed for us. I think he looks like a little bear.

Ottawa River from Bate Island

Ottawa Skyline from Bate Island

From there it was on for a lakes tour of the Gatineau Parkway. We stopped first at the Welcome Centre to get a map. Our first stop was the Pink Lake Overlook and then the Pink Lake Trail. The Pink Lake trail was something Gordon and I walked on one of our first dates in 1987 so it has special meaning for us. We didn't walk too far as it's a lot of up and down steps and Gordon isn't really up to it at this point but it was nice to be there and see it again.

Pink Lake is very rare in that it is meromictic. Due to the meromictic properties of Pink Lake there are ancient forms of bacteria which use sulfur instead of oxygen to perform photosynthesis. These bacteria form a layer about 7 metres from the bottom to avoid the oxygenated water and maximize sunlight exposure. due to human activities. Park management forbids swimming in the lake, walking domestic animals near it, straying from the wooden boardwalk for sight-seers, and throwing stones into the lake.

Driving along the Gatineau Parkway. This is really beautiful in the Fall with the coloured leaves.

Pink Lake from the overlook

Trail beside Pink Lake

We also stopped at Mulvilhill Lake, Bourgeois Lake, Fortune Lake and drove along Meach Lake till the road ended. A couple of the lakes were hard to see because of all the trees and undergrowth.

Lake Mulvilhill has a lot of pretty picnic areas.

You can see a small beaver lodge on Bourgeois Lake.

Fortune Lake

Kayakers on Meach Lake

We stopped at the Visitor Centre at Old Chelsea, QC as Gordon had recently sold them a photo for display but they are just getting the display together so we'll have to go back. We had thought about having lunch at Old Chelsea but decided to go home instead. By then it was about 1:30 p.m. and our lunch had consisted of tostitos which I keep in the truck for emergencies.

We returned to Ontario on the MacDonald-Cartier Bridge which goes to downtown Ottawa. I snapped a few photos that we thought might be of interest to the blog readers. These photos were taken from the truck so please forgive the quality.

Ottawa skyline from the MacDonald-Cartier Bridge

Sussex Drive going toward downtown - the Canadian Prime Minister lives on Sussex Drive in the other direction.

National Gallery with 30 ft spider exhibit entitled "Maman"

Parliament Hill
The Peace Tower
Sparks Street Mall

Ottawa City Hall

Our plan to go straight home was foiled when Gordon decided he wanted to walk along the canal so we did that for a while taking more photos. The canal is the longest skateway in the world at 7 miles. It's very popular here in the winter and you'll see lots of skaters around. Thankfully for the past four winters we haven't been here to see them!

The Canal Ritz is a popular spot in the summer.

Especially the patio which is right on the canal.

This is the Rideau Canal where the skaters can be found in the winter.

The Pretoria Bridge (a lift bridge) which crosses the Rideau Canal.

Pathway along the canal

One of the tour boats was out on the canal on our way back to the RV so here's a photo of it.

When I got home, it was time for a nap! This tourist stuff is tiring!

Wednesday 4 June 2008

Manual Labour, Reading and a Nap

Today was cloudy and windy and we did have some spots of rain. Just as I was getting up I heard it on the roof and thought "there goes my walk" but it was short-lived so away I went. I again managed to get in a couple of short runs. I don't appear to be having any ill effects from running.

After breakfast and some blog reading and doing my jigzone puzzle of the day, I decided to bite the bullet. Tomorrow is supposed to be a decent day so we might want to do something. The weekend is a mish mash of weather but 31C (88F) so today was the day! To do what you say? Well, I've been procrastinating about washing the bugs off the nose of the RV so I finally got it done. It looks better but not 100%. It really needs a professional all over job.

When I finished that I was wet with water, rain and sweat so I washed out my jacket that I had worn, hung it outside to dry and then went and had a shower at the campground shower house. The showers here used to be filthy and disgusting but I guess over the winter they put in new ones and now they're bright and shiny.

Last night I uploaded more photos to my Photobucket site. The link to the site is on the sidebar. I've now finished 2008 to date so will have to get on the external hard drive to do previous years.

Gordon has an appointment for his MRI on Sunday June 8th at 8:00 a.m. so the specialist should have the results when he goes on June 25th.

This afternoon I read and had a nap. I started S is for Silence by Sue Grafton last night and I'm already half way through it!

Today's photo was taken here in the park. I have no idea what kind of flower it is but it's on a large tree.

Tuesday 3 June 2008

Ornamental Gardens

It was another cloudy, rainy day today. I heard it raining just as I was getting up but it let up enough for me to go for my walk and I even managed to run a bit today! I commented to Gordon the other night that the foot fracture must be getting better because now I notice the arthritis in my big toe more!

So I'm thinking enough with the rain already! It's rained every day since forever! We are lucky in that we've had some sunny breaks in between but I'm really tired of the mud!

Gordon had an appointment at 7:40 a.m. for a bone scan so he was gone early and was home just as I was getting my cereal ready. Hopefully the results of that will be good news. A few years ago he was told he had the beginnings of osteoporosis, probably from living with celiac disease all his life and not knowing it. He was put on drugs for osteoporosis but these caused stomach problems so he hasn't been taking them. We're hoping that now that he can absorb nutrients that things will be more positive with this bone scan.

My friend and former co-worker, John is now posting a blog. If anyone is interested in reading of his past adventures please click here. I have put a link in my sidebar as well. John will also be taking another motorcycle trip in July. I'm looking forward to his adventures. John has been a follower of our odyssey since the beginning and at one time, hoped to purchase his own Titanium and join us on the road. Now that he has retired, he will be taking several long motorcycle trips which he enjoys very much.

I decided to eliminate Shoutbox from my sidebar as I hadn't been getting comments there since the first couple of days. I prefer Comments anyway!

After a morning nap that stretched to after lunch, Gordon decided we should go to the Ornamental Gardens, part of the Ottawa Experimental Farm to take some photos of the peonies. They aren't all out yet and some of the ones that are have dropped their petals due to all the rain that we've had but they were still beautiful.

Here's a photo of the photographer:

Pink (almost burgundy) and white lilacs

Down Lilac Way

Some single and some double peonies.

Quite a few bees doing their pollinating

The lilacs are still out but some of the trees are finished and the iris were out as well. They had some beautiful iris. For anyone that knows me, they know the iris is my favourite flower. I especially liked the black lacy ones we saw today.

This purple and black and the black iris below were two of my very favourites

A pretty good day considering the weather but you can take flower pictures in any kind of weather!

Monday 2 June 2008

Groceries, Chiropractor and Mud Lake

The day started out bright and sunny however the weather forecast was for rain and thunder storms in the late afternoon which proved to be true. However, I managed to have my walk under bright and sunny skies.

I got ready early and went out for groceries this morning as Gordon wanted to go to the chiropractor this afternoon so I was home before noon. He had made his chiropractic appointment for 2 p.m. We arrived at 1:30 p.m. and they took him almost right away.

We had decided that after the chiropractor we were going to do the Mud Lake Trail. We've done it before going in from the south. This time we went from the north. It's supposed to be a great birding area but other than robins, redwing blackbirds, chickadees, a goose and crows we didn't see any birds. We did see this little turtle (photo below) a muskrat (photo below) and a black squirrel (photo below). I fed some bread that I had brought to the squirrel and he seemed happy.

This is Mud Lake with the highrises behind and the goose in the foreground.

Another scenic Mud Lake photo.

Gordon on the trail.

Just like a Monet painting, well sorta like a Monet painting.

It's a pretty trail but lots of trees and vegetation. There were a lot of pretty white and pink wild phlox around and also some lily of the valley in one spot which always smells so pretty.

After that trail we went across the road and took a short trail to the Ottawa River. I believe these are the Deschenes Rapids on the river.

It started to rain shortly after we got in the truck but we were home by the time the thunder started.

Another nice day!