July 2013

Depot delay

This is old news by now but we went camping at the Depot Lakes again this year. It was, as always, awesome.

The night we rolled into the conservation area, it was super foggy.

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But by the following morning it was nice again and Sean made breakfast for everyone.

Cheese, eggs, pitas, coffee!

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Breakfast of champions. We needed it for all the activities of the day.

Saddle up the dog! We’re going in the water!

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Oh, Ahh-qua Bar. If you’ve never spent a day in one of these, you’re not really enjoying life.

All year long I wait for the day when I get to sit in these floating chairs in the lake, with a cold beer in the arm rest.

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There were fine cigars left over from Cuba, followed by a short row out to the cliffs…

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Jane was the most brave and jumped off first.

We only went off the low shelf this year because Jane learned a lesson for all of us last year when she went off the high shelf and landed in a rear-injuring position.

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I got this awesome swimsuit here and I’ll never own another. When this thing turns to threads I’m taking it to a seamstress to have another one made. Did I mention there are shorts under the skirt? IT’S MY DREAM SUIT.

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Till next year, site!

This weekend? Hillside!

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Leave it to beaver

I started this guy back on Canada Day, but messed him up and had to begin again.

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One swimming beav.

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Full-grain, veg-tanned leather. I hand-carved, tooled, painted and stained this cuff. Finished with leather protector and set with brass snaps.

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Oh deer

Finally! I’d been looking for a solid-seam-constructed pewter flask for ages and finally found a supplier.

These handmade pewter flasks hold the same six ounces as my stainless steel flasks, but they’re nicer, weightier, better suited to a back pocket.

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I think I’ll keep this one for quality control purposes…

 

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Gored

I was just getting pictures together to write a post about the Gore, but Hollie has done a great job of it here.

Without re-stating her case too much (ok, maybe re-stating her case), this is one more example of a too-oft repeated pattern in this city that suggests council intends to follow a model of “city-building” that is completely at odds with what most urban planners and strategists will agree is unsustainable.

If you look through old newspaper articles in the Special Collections at Hamilton Public Library, you’ll be blown away by how similar today’s stories are to stories from the 20s, 40s, 60s.

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Hamilton has been demolishing itself in a misguided journey towards “progress” for a century. It’s not working. Take a look around. The core is like a toothless grin, with parking lots and empty spaces everywhere.

I was talking to a traveller from eastern Europe a couple years ago. We were in HIStory & HERitage looking at pictures of some of the beautiful buildings Hamilton used to have. He wanted to know why so many were gone.

“Canada is not Europe,” he said. “You haven’t had wars here.”

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I love Hamilton. I do. Sean and I chose to live here, work here, volunteer here, invest our money and our efforts into the core, be part of the community here because we love it and it has so much energy and potential. At a point though, it starts to feel like an abusive relationship. When are we stupid for expecting things to change?

We love it here, but we want to live in a city whose decision-makers value (among other things) cultural assets, push alternative and sustainable transportation and consider pedestrianization to be important. We want people to stand up and DO for the city.

I love it here, but every time something like this happens, I start to wonder if our goals aren’t at odds. I find myself considering the cities that are making themselves into the kinds places I want to be.

I’m sick of funneling my energy into what feels like a losing battle.

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Hamilton, I love you, but you’ve got gotta change.

 

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Arrrrrr matey

Tall Ships were in Hamilton over the Canada Day weekend.

I feel like Tall Ships have been in the background of every summer of my life. They’re always sailing into some port in some city I’m living in. BUT, I’d never gone out to see them until this past weekend.

The Tall Ships Festival was on down at Bayfront and it was pretty amazing. Rammed and jammed with people and music and pirate ships…though I heard the sailors don’t like being called pirates…but come one. Look at these things…

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Yo ho ho, right?

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Thus inspired, Sean got our boat into the water on Tuesday and we sailed last night!

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Avast and whatnot!

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And if you want to check out last week’s camping, it’s over on Love it a Lot. Soon to be here as well…once I get around to loading my pictures.

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