River rafting on the Thompson River, east of Lytton British Columbia

As I was driving along the Trans-Canadian Highway, Route 1, I spotted a bunch of cars pulled to the side of the road and people alongside a wall, looking out at the river, so I stopped… River Rafting…

IMG_5014.JPG

I admit, this is one of those bucket list things I didn’t do when young, that I’m physically incapable of doing now that I’m old…

fullsizeoutput_4df4.jpeg

fullsizeoutput_4df5.jpeg

Inside the ‎⁨British Columbia Parliament Buildings⁩ in ⁨Victoria⁩, Vancouver Island, ⁨Canada⁩

Located in the heart of the city of Victoria, on Vancouver Island right off of the Tran Canadian Highway (Route 1) and overlooking the bay, is the Parliament building of the entire province (not state) of British Columbia. It is an incredibly beautiful building and worth taking the time to admire.

IMG_2936.jpg

In the summer of 2016 I had actually been living in Victoria’s China town for about a month when I finally got around to doing this… there’s actually quite a lot to do in that city… to those who come here for a few hours on a cruise, seriously… you’re missing out.

IMG_3476

I had come intent on doing the 3:00 tour, but it turned out that instead of doing it for everybody, they did it for JUST two people (VIPs who turned out to only be the general manager and concierge of the Empress Hotel). Personally, I think that was incredibly rude of management (absolutely no reason they couldn’t have joined a group of other people, or done it between tours). Anyway I kind of stalked the VIP group (who you would assume would have the best docent) … just enough to pick up some of the spiel; and, since it didn’t sound like their guided tour was even going to be all that interesting anyway (it sounded a bit boring actually), I didn’t bother to stick around a full hour for the 4 o’clock guided tour and opted to do it alone.

IMG_3539.jpg

IMG_0481

One of the major differences you see in Canada is the respect (or some might say over whelming guilt) that they accord to their Native populations, which they call the FIRST Nations, as in they were there FIRST. Laying on the floor (ground floor) in the picture bottom right is a quilt devoted to the issue of the dead and missing indigenous women of Canada (explained by the image below) … this is a HUGE problem in the US as well, only in the US it gets no press coverage.

IMG_3486

Having now been in Australia, whose government has only just recently even bothered to recognized that Aboriginal populations were on the continent at all, when the British Landed, I have an even greater appreciation to the mea culpa Canada has chosen to embrace

IMG_0483

IMG_0486

This recognition of the respect due to the First Nations Peoples of Canada, is not the only ‘we’re getting better’ that the building proudly advertises, but also its treatment of what used to be referred to as “the fairer sex.”

fullsizeoutput_4df3

IMG_3528.jpg

IMG_0485
Members of the Legislative Assembly in 1898 (white males) and in 2016

IMG_3519

IMG_0488

Along the walls of the building are also nods to Canada’s history as part of the British Empire, from which it only recently separated itself in 1887… but that in its zeitgeist hasn’t quiet, as documented below…

fullsizeoutput_4df0.jpegIMG_3489IMG_0482

You don’t see Americans emotionally embracing the traditions or monarchy of England in quite this way…. SO for instance their war memorials were ‘informative’ in that respect. IMG_0487.JPG

Pay attention to symbols and language, a knights sword, the WWI 88th regiment “who gave their lives for the Empire” and “for King and Country” — which they separated from which they had separated from 17 years earlier… and if you look closer in the Korean War (upper left), about 30 years later … there it still says “at the call of King and Country” left their families to serve the in the war.

IMG_0484

IMG_0489

IMG_3535

IMG_3537

After touring the building, I caught the little play that they do which gives some of the history of the founding of Victoria and the development of its buildings.

IMG_3475.jpg

IMG_0480.JPG

It was very cute, and informative… although a bit hard to hear (not the best acoustics) I did however love the fact that they hired a really tiny girl to play Victoria

Height of Land, Arctic/Atlantic Watershed, Huronian, ON

There are a whole bunch of continental divide points in north America, this is along Tran-Canadian Highway (route 1)

IMG_5268

Map from wikipedia

IMG_0428.JPG

I was kind of amazed by the rock around here… there was black shiny rock embedded into what almost looked like maybe it was marble. I collected smaller stones to take to Chicago to put on my father’s grave.

Yale, British Columbia, Canada

Driving along Canada’s Route 1 (I was heading east, but at the time the road was going due north) I passed through the tiny town of Yale in British Columbia, population 186

IMG_4962.JPG

IMG_4966

IMG_4967

IMG_4968

IMG_4969

IMG_4975

 

IMG_4976

IMG_0404

I have to admit, there were items for sale at this place that made me drool… IF I had more room in the car I’d have bought the cow’s skull or the carved wooden bear… but I don’t, and I have no where to store any of it anyway… my storage locker is pretty full.

Fort Hope National Historic Site of Canada, Hope, BC

I traveled through Fort Hope back on July 30, 2016 on my way east to Stratford Canada for the Theater Festival, but never got around to posting the photos… my bad…  The Fort Hope National historic site was at first a trading post, but a year later because of the explosion of the population due to the Fraser River gold rush in 1858, was designated to be a town. Apparently Hope contains what is now the oldest church in Canada, but I didn’t stop to see it. That said, this town is in a BEAUTIFUL spot!!!

IMG_4946.JPG

The wind here was VERY strong during my visit, but according to a local I spoke to it’s always like that because Hope is the meeting point between the warm winds of the mainland and the cool winds from Ocean.

IMG_4942

IMG_4941

fullsizeoutput_4dd6.jpegIMG_0389IMG_0388

IMG_0387