Sunday, April 30, 2017

Historical Buildings of Carleton Place

Mostly by request, I have photographed a few downtown buildings recently. I have quite a bit of information on the first, but I'll just give a passing nod to the rest for now. I also will show both colour and mono versions of the first two buildings.

I have known this building as the Heritage Inn in my 12 years in Carleton Place, but it is better known for it's long history as the Mississippi Hotel, and at this point, you may recall that the Ontario version of the Mississippi River runs through Carleton Place.

It has had two owners, or at least renters, in my time, who for the most part operated a pub/restaurant mainly on the adjunct to the building that you see on the far right — the part of the building that doesn't seem to belong with the rest. They once tried to operate a Sunday brunch in the dining room of the hotel itself, but they didn't seem quite up to the task.

It has a long a colourful past after being opened in 1872, inlcuding a fire in the 1950s that caused the hotel to lose its top floor. In the 1970s it was known for featuring country music but later it is said to have become a home for rock bands, strippers and motorcycle gangs.

Well, it is now being refurbished, and I have a hope of getting inside for a few photos before it is re-opened through a connection of mine. I hope that this venerable old hotel enjoys a new and prosperous rebirth.

The information in this post was obtained from the Romancing the Mississippi Hotel post on Linda Seccaspina's blog here where you can read more information.

Below are the two versions of Abner Nichols' fine house. He was an important man in the early lumber industry in the area. It is now a bridal shop.

I took those photos (above) last Saturday and wanted to take a few more shots on our main street, but for the others on my list. I decided to come back very early on Sunday morning when I hoped that the streets would be empty of parked cars. Well, they weren't quite empty, and the nice clouds of the above photos were replaced by blank skies.

In the end, after some hemming and hawing, I decided to add some fake skies. Even though they don't work perfectly, I prefer them to white. blank skies.

Following is the former Post Office and Customs building. Even at 6:54 on a Sunday morning, there was a car parked out front, so I shot upwards. I may try for a full shot again someday.

Then, there is St Andrews Presbyterian church. Declining attendance caused the congregation to offer it for sale. They offered it to the town, but the expense of refurbishing and upkeep kept the town from accepting the offer. In the end, another congregation bought it and will let the remaining St Andrews faithful also use it to continue their congregation for the time being. Once again, I added the skies, and once again, the result is not perfect, but I prefer it over the blank look.

Finally, a diptych of the Masonic Temple, also downtown. I assumed that the masons once used the whole building, but the downstairs is now retail space.

I may photograph some of these buildings again sometime, and I'm sure there are others that I could shoot as well, but except for the church, these were all by request.

Friday, April 28, 2017

Evening Reflections

Not long ago, I posted some flooding and reflections in our Riverside Park. About a week later I went back in the evening to get some different light. I was surprised to see how much the waters had receded despite what I though had been a copious amount of rain that week, but the light was pretty good. For the most part, good landscape photos come in the good morning and evening light.

The pond in the first two was much smaller that in the previous visit.

In the park itself there was still a rather nice pond. I like the converging lines in this one and that there is much colour left on leaves that made it though the winter. Fortunately, they are right at the focal point of all of the converging lines.

The sun was getting lower. This may be my favourite shot, and it was just a bit of a last minute thought in passing.

I had changed lenses from a wide angle to a normal lens for the next group of photos. You can see how the sun was lowering quickly and the darkness descending although some of the darkness was likely a result of setting the camera so as not to overexpose the sun, which can be easy to do.

I was pretty happy with these photos. With most branches still bare, it can be a little bleak for photography before the trees leaf out, but all of those reflections made some decent photos possible.

Wednesday, April 26, 2017

A Quick Post

It's been a few days since I posted, so here's a quickie.

On a stroll down main street on the weekend (to scout other pics which I will probably post later) I snapped these two shots: one storefront and one of a lady working in the window of a storefront.

And ... two of JJ, who was wearing my hoodie one cool morning.

Saturday, April 22, 2017

The Cat Takes Precedence

This is an odd weekend around here. Sue and I are almost never apart, but we are this weekend, and it feels a bit strange. Now, when I say we're never apart, we do give each other lots of space, but I can wander over to her work corner almost any old time and say hello.

But she's off to our brother-in-law's memorial this weekend, and it seemed best for me to stay home. This is for cat reasons, believe it or not. We didn't think our old girl could be alone for the weekend, particularly when those could might be able to drop in to tend to her are also on the road with Sue.

I know it is odd to give up a weekend for a cat, but she's old and has needed vet care already in her short stay here. So, here I am.

And here she is in a video. See how an old, fat cat has to work herself up for a jump onto our chairs.

But she is a sweetie and likes lap time — a lot. She's been here almost a month now, and I am somewhat surprised that she has made it this long. She still needs a laxative daily to help her along, poor thing.

This ↓ is where she lives, more or less — on the corner of the couch. She can go days without bothering to come upstairs for a visit, but she does go and sleep by the patio door sometimes where she might catch a bit of sun.

I did contribute to Bill's memorial/wake, however, but putting some photos together. I didn't have a lot of photos to work with and mostly poor quality ones at that, but here they are. (BTW you may recall that we also had a memorial last fall, but fractured families and all ...)

Above is a framed 8x10 of some of his qualities and interests. Below is a 13x19 print which pretty much speaks for itself.

A photo of Bill with his daughter (left) and then his granddaughter (right), this weekend being for that side of the family.

Too bad it is necessary to miss the tribute, but I am happy to have contributed something.

Thursday, April 20, 2017

The Double Digit Birthday

I have loved this girl since she came into this world with a bellow, letting us know that she had arrived with gusto. And so, the gusto has remained, and she was particularly gustified in the past few days to enter double digits.

First, the annual collage of various shots from throughout the year.

Her birthday was on Wednesday, but our half of the family mostly celebrated on Tuesday. Here are shots of gift opening.

She opens my card

A hug from Mom with some of hr gifts

My collage

More $ for the cruise to come later this year

The trophies

She had decided that dessert would not be the traditional cake, at least not with us, so it was off to DQ.

She had also prevailed upon us to take her actual double digit birthday day, Wednesday, off school. And since Sue and I are worthless retirees, her request could be accommodated. I put the camera in the car for our travels and never thought to use it, so that's the end of her birthday for this year, silly old fool that I am.

Wednesday, April 19, 2017

Easter Monday Walk

We had the kids on Easter Monday, which was nice because they had been with Dad and we hadn't seen them since the previous Wednesday. Deciding to get outdoors for awhile, we went to the trail. Unfortunately it was rather cool and blustery, but at least we were a bit sheltered in there.

She turns 10 today and has kind of reached that tweener stage. I wonder hw long it will be before she is able to look grandma in the eye.

Meanwhile she is a ham and tends to search out photo ops for me.

They wandered off the trail into the woodland.

And the ham found another opportunity to ham it up.

I got the toothless JJ to sit in the fork of a tree.

Danica spotted two Mallards swimming in the pond that usually isn't a pond. She took a number of photos, and this one turned out best. I was surprised to see two boys hanging out together. I guess they will miss out on some fun this spring.

We heard a knocking, and JJ and Sue searched for the woodpecker. JJ spotted it, so he got to shoot it.

The danged bird was facing away, but we can see a bit of the red head and some of his handiwork.

It was a relatively short and brisk outing, but it was good to get out nevertheless.

Monday, April 17, 2017

More of Those Floody Photos

Waters continue to be high hereabouts, with a geezer who has lived on the river for 42 years telling me that it's the highest during that whole time. Docks and debris are being washed downstream from the lake. Although we continue to get our share of rain, I am told that the system remains well under control.

First, a few more from the flooded woodland path that I showed last week, the initial picture being peanut shells adjacent to a property that feeds the birds.

I just like the impression of the grasses through the water.

The shape appealed to me.

Now, for some of flooded parkland, the first being JJ and friends in our neighbourhood park. The second is a throw-in of a feisty looking robin in the same park.

The rest are from the town's main park by the river. Sue and I sometimes take a coffee and sit in the parking lot by the boat ramp when the weather is too cool or rainy to sit outside. While we have often seen it somewhat flooded in spring, we have never seen it like this.

It is so flooded that a canoe was able to paddle where there is normally dry land.

Then they paddled away upriver, but even here they were over the usual dry bank. The second photo is just a crop of the first.

The flooding has made early spring photos are little more interesting than usual because, as you can see, the branches are still pretty stark and bare.

Sunday, April 16, 2017

Happy Easter

Good Easter Morning

It is sunny here for the moment anyway, so it's hay-making weather, or bunny hopping, I guess. We are having a quiet, kid-less sort of Easter, but the kids will be with us on Monday, and we'll do a family dinner in the evening.

Meanwhile we have some silly photos for you.

Enjoy your day,