As August draws to a close, I reflect on past summer’s-ends and my documentations of such in previous posts. (Search for “transient skies of summer” for my 3-part photo series from 2006.) This weekend in Vancouver was a welcome return to normalcy after a week or so of dreadful rain and mist. The last time it rained hard, after a long dry spell, I thought it was fascinating but this time was just simply unfair and, in fact, abnormal! The PNE recorded more rainy days than average and we had 50% more rainfall than is the usual for August. So it makes it all that much harder to accept that summer is drawing to a close, with longer shadows that seem to abruptly take over the yard having lost a week or so’s transition period.
My family — mainly my oldest niece and I — have been enjoying the edible gifts borne by our favourite local park and other nearby forests. This summer’s crop has been especially fruitful and we’re expecting a ridiculous bumper crop of blackberries soon(!!!). I go crazy for salmonberries and introduced the avid 7-year-old berry-picker to the fine art of picking: get a grabby stick, dress the part, and get into the shrubbery! The two of us went on a little adventure, avoiding mud and trampling on dry brush, then hiking up the hill to safe ground when turning back to return across a log and over a creekbed seemed like a more difficult option.
If we’d had more time and more adults we could have probably matched the huge amount my friend and I picked last year. We missed out on picking at Green Timbers this year and I can only imagine how many berries must have been there. At any rate, over a few trips to the local parks here we yielded a significant amount for desserts and snacks, which the family enjoyed. Early in the season my cousin and his Korean girlfriend were here. She hadn’t tasted salmonberries before and the two of us went nuts!
In case you’d been wondering, I didn’t die, fall ill or otherwise lose the ability to post to my blog. The desire, somewhat… but moreover I was too busy doing and thinking other things to even remember to post, and when I did I didn’t feel up to it or there was something of higher priority. (I had my New Entry page open, blank, for 12 days.) So why have I been so quiet? Long story short (long story is hopefully coming later but don’t hold your breath), I moved back to North Vancouver from my co-abode in Surrey. That was almost a month ago (my how time flies when one is busy!) and my new-old bedroom is still a mess so it’s been my priority over many things. Everybody here (my middle sister and her family moved back in two days before I did) has been in purge mode and digging through my old stuff I left behind has been eventful and interesting. The cause for the move back home I don’t wish to discuss in detail — so please don’t ask — but is simply that the two of us aren’t together anymore. Nothing simple about that but it’s a straightforward reason. More specifically I guess I could say I moved back home because living solo in Metro Vancouver is incredibly expensive if not unaffordable. So I’m here waiting out the housing heat wave and am trying to be optimistic about it.
On Monday I had a little adventure I’d like to share with you. It needed the above introduction to fully make sense of the context, but it’s kind of like the 8th story in a series because there is much to say for the previous weeks. We’ll start here for now.