Sunday, May 24, 2015

In Memory ...

Learning that he was failing, we drove three hours on Thursday to visit Sue's brother, Larry in the hospital. Sadly, he was not conscious, and he passed away in the wee hours on Friday.

He was a remarkable man: a retired professor in the field of education. He was a voracious reader, a deep thinker, and a gentle and kindly person. He is already missed.

This is a collage that I assembled for him as a little gift for our last trip to see him a month and a half ago. It is evident in these snapshots that Larry was very fit but was felled too early by polycythemia, which could not be tamed.

On the day of his parting, to calm our grieving spirits, we took a restorative stroll in a nearby conservation area. The woods and the blooming lilacs helped to restore our troubled souls.

Sisters, Sue and Heather, shared many happy memories.
Both life and lilacs are ephemeral but gifts to be greatly appreciated.
Tomorrow, we will journey once again to say our final goodbyes. Alas.

Tuesday, May 19, 2015

I Caught a Sunrise

You may recall that I got up early one morning to catch a sunrise over the river. Except that the sun didn't rise that day. Well, I tried again last week with more success.

I opened my little eyes around 4:30 and saw that it wasn't completely clouded over up there, so I got myself up and ready and went back down to the riverside.

These were a few of the shots. Nothing jaw-dropping, but I was happy enough to get them.

Actually, this next and final one is not of the river but of a pond next to the river. I decided to take it on my way back to the car. I like the reflections and kept the rest of the photo as silhouettes mainly.

Monday, May 18, 2015

At the Tulip Festival

On the weekend, we met some old friends and did a quick run to the tulip festival where, you guessed it, we saw a lot of tulips.

Sue and Marcia amidst blossoms.

Sue shopping and posing by a tulip sculpture.

Two versions of a jazz band, playing in a dark tent.

Finally: tulips.

Friday, May 15, 2015

Front and Back

Just two photos — diptychs — for the holiday weekend.

Above: it's blossom time. The lilacs are blooming nicely and many bushes and trees. This tree is on our neighbour's front yard, but since we're cheek by jowl in townhouses, it might as well be ours.

Below: we finally got what many others have — solar lights. These come in the shape of dragonflies and are hanging in our backyard.

Have a good long weekend, everybody.

Tuesday, May 12, 2015

My Grandfather is Hanging Around in Australia

I have had this photo on Flickr for more than 8 years, but not too long ago someone requested permission to print it and hang it. (I'm certain that I've posted it here too.)

The guy on the extreme left of the second row is my grandfather, Arthur Joseph Quinlan. He was a bricklayer, and this was the work crew on the Sunlife building in Montreal, probably in the late 1910s.

Anyway, somebody in the ABBTF (Australian Brick & Block Laying Foundation) saw it on Flickr and asked for permission to print it and hang it. Of course, I granted them permission, if they would but share a photo of it when it was hanging.

Not long ago, they sent an email with these attachments.

I think it's a pretty cool thing.

In case they wanted it, I offered to remove the Montreal writing that my mother added. I did it, but they didn't get back to me. Here it is anyway.

And since we're here, looking at an old photo, this is his mother, Mary Ann Quinlan (nee Baker), in front of her house in England. That would be one of my grandfather's brothers, I presume.

This is his wife, my grandmother, Charlotte Ann Quinlan (nee Robinson). She is my only grandparent to be born in Canada and not England. She has Irish ancestry and probably English too, but I can't put my finger on the family records right now. She is also the only grandparent I can't remember because she died when I was very young.

Finally, a picture of me with my grandfather Quinlan. I look to be about 4 years old, so it would be about 1951, I think.

Sunday, May 10, 2015

Happy Mothers Day

Although this photo has nothing to do it, Happy Mothers Day. We will be off to the park with daughter and grandkids in a bit.

As for the photo, I went out at the crack of dawn yesterday, hoping for a nice sunrise. Too bad the sun didn't rise. :) But I took a few photos anyway. This one was a 1 minute long exposure.

With the long winter, it has been awhile since I tried to take what I consider to be a real photo: going somewhere nice at a good time of day with the express purpose of taking a certain photo, usually with a tripod. Most of my shots for a long time have been sort of a 'run and gun' type of thing, which is good enough most of the time, but not usually the very best.

Friday, May 08, 2015

The Waiting Game

Yesterday, we picked daughter up bright and early to drive her to an appointment in the city. It turned out that the procedure on her eye took several hours.

The waiting was pleasant. The weather was wonderful, and for a long time we sat under the shade of a glorious willow at the end of the parking lot.

Before the long sit, we walked in the park next to the office, which included an area called Poet's Walk. I am still in thrall over the burst of greens after a long, monochromatic winter.

There were dogs running loose, two of which you can see in the distance beyond Sue. They were very unobtrusive dogs, so we didn't mind their presence at all.

Thinking, very erroneously, that the wait would not be long, we soon went to the willow tree in the parking lot, so we would be ready when Shauna was done. Luckily, we had two roll-up chairs in the trunk, and  I took several shots from them during the two-hour wait.

Above: a dangling branch.

Below: just point the camera up and shoot. I closed the aperture to get a bit of a burst effect on the sun peeking over the branches.

Lots of folk came and went while we sat. I thought his lady was interesting in her garb with the cell in one hand and the cig in the other. I decided to convert it to mono althoguh there was nothing wrong with the colour version.

Shauna eventually emerged with a somewhat blackened eye, and we found a Denny's where we had a wonderful, if late, breakfast. We don't have too many Denny's in Canada. A few decades ago, when we lived in Sarnia, we would cross the border to Port Huron and enjoy the Denny's there. My goto was the French Slam, so I ordered it again and enjoyed it thoroughly. It was a darn sight pricier than back then, but it was good.