This weekend marks the beginning of summer in the minds of most Canadians. Cottages and pools are opened, and gardens are tended to. The parking lots of every garden centre from Wal-Mart to the upscale and expensive ones are full as giddy Canadians embrace the warmth, and it has been unseasonably warm this weekend with temperatures reaching 30°C/86°F and beyond. In Canadian terms, that's pretty hot, especially in May.
For us, since we don't have a cottage (the one that we have access to is infested with black flies at this time of year) and are too decrepit to camp, we do gardening and, yesterday, we also visited the Brooke Valley Spring Tour. Brooke Valley is way out in the country, but a few years ago, we saw their spring tour advertised, so we drove out to have a look around. There are a few studios on the tour, but the highlights are the lunch and chamber music sessions. We were so intrigued that we decided to go back this year. Read on.
|They donate whatever money is raised to charity. This year the local charity was the Dignity House Hospice and the international one was the Stephen Lewis Foundation. We even had an orchid on our table.|
|There were six entrees to choose from and many desserts and drinks. The prices were reasonable ...|
|... and the food was quite delicious.|
|After lunch we wandered over to this house ...|
|... where we were treated to a free, forty-minute chamber music recital. In addition to the bassoonist (it was his house) and cellist, there was also a flutist (not shown). All were remarkable, extremely high-calibre musicians.|
|After the concert, I couldn't resist photographing this shed on the property.|
|There were also arts and crafts on display. September displayed her encaustic art in a little cabin.|
|This lady, whose name I didn't get, had much wicker furniture for sale along with this rather remarkable outhouse.|
|I had been able to snap this photo of her previously as I peered through the shed window while she sat reading.|
I hope you enjoyed us enjoying the Brooke Valley Spring Tour on our Victoria Day long weekend.