Snapshots of Canada

Friday 5 July 2013

{L} I spent most of my month at home in Saskatchewan visiting with family & friends in my hometown and surrounding area.
{R} Remember this post? I happened to snap a photo of the World's Tallest Teepee while in Medicine Hat, Alberta.
{L} I got to witness my niece's very first dance recital and my goodness, it was cute!  It brought back so many of my dancing memories and I loved seeing her on stage!
{R} I learned that I detest Costco (and other large, busy stores) after 3 years of living outside of North America.  It all just seemed far too large and unnecessary and navigating that giant cart around on a Saturday is torture!
{L} I took a trip to Calgary to visit a dear friend who I hadn't seen since well before I left Canada.  Funny enough, my first summer trip home in 2011, she was in Africa although not anywhere near Gabon.  In 2012, she was in Europe but not Norway.  We caught up over dinner and So You Think You Can Dance and it was fabulous!
{R} I had to rent a car while in Calgary and they upgraded me to this cute little Beetle.  It took me to Chinook Centre where I indulged in a little shopping and caught up with another dear friend.
{L} From Calgary, I flew to Vancouver where I scheduled a longer layover to meet a best friend.  It was short and sweet. 
{R} My flight from Vancouver to Northern BC had me in this tiny little airplane traversing the Canadian Rockies.  The flight itself was fine - the descent, not so nice.  
{L} Joe's parents own a golf course so it isn't a visit without a stop there.  While I don't golf, I do enjoy a drink on the clubhouse terrace.
{R} Joe and I spent some time wandering around his hometown.  We did the Riverwalk Trail and he pointed out his Dad's childhood home.  We had lunch downtown and watched the tree planters descend on the city centre from the surrounding forests.
{L} The main purpose for our trip was to attend one of Joe's oldest friend's wedding which was a small town wedding at it's finest.  Joe had a blast catching up with people he hadn't seen in years and I liked putting faces to names I'd heard so many stories about.
{5} Beavers, one of our national symbols, leave evidence of their presence in the area.  We didn't see any of the creatures in the flesh but did witness a mama deer wander into the yard.
{Both} While the weather was far from perfect for most of my trip, the temperatures rose above 30 degrees Celsius near the end of our stay.  Sunshine combined with a Canada Day long weekend meant the lakes were busy.  Had we not had the wedding the night before (which resulted in a headache the next day) we would have spent more time at the lake.

My near-month in Canada was filled with visits from family and friends and far too many indulgences in food, leaving my stomach in terrible shape for an entire week.  As always, time passed quickly.
I can't  neglect to mention the devastating floods in Southern Alberta.  As I approached the end of my second week at home, my eyes were glued to the television as we watched the horrifying images coming out of Alberta in what is being called, Canada's most expensive natural disaster.  Flooding is common in Southern Alberta as the snow melts in the mountains creating rises in river levels but never have we experienced something quite so drastic and so sudden.  We watched entire homes float away near Canmore in the Rockies and the raging rivers continued to rise and rush towards other communities.  The media focused on Calgary as 100,000 people were evacuated from their homes and the downtown core turned into a soggy ghost town yet High River really suffered the most from the water.  With literally no warning, the entire town became saturated and until yesterday, some residents were still unable to return home.  Sadly enough, flood insurance is not available in Canada and as I drove through Calgary and saw the mounds of muddy belongings piled outside people's homes as they attempted to clean up, I knew it was just the beginning of a long and arduous recovery for those affected.

My sister and her family were evacuated from their home in Medicine Hat and thankfully, they and other close friends and family came away unscathed yet our hearts are still with all of those affected.

The Canadian Red Cross is accepting donations to assist those affected should you feel so inclined.

{The stories coming out of the Calgary Zoo and the staff's plight to save the animals are practically unbelievable.  In fact, it reads more like a movie script than a news story.}
Backyards and homes in Canmore engulfed by raging river waters.
A man rescuing his cat in High River, Alberta
Flood aftermath in Calgary


  1. goodness those photos of the flooding are horrific!!! i read a lot about it in US news, but not too much in Norwegian i didnt tune back in to see that it was as devastating as it ended up being. so sad. :(

    but on another note, great photos of canada :) im obsessed w/ western canada and when we go to the US for a month in sept-oct, my boyfriend is trying to get us to vacation for 3 weeks in central america but i keep throwing western canada in there trying to convince him :) usually i get my way so we'll see how this goes. i know he wont end up disappointed if he sees canada.

    1. It was so sad and continues to be for so many people. The clean up has really only just begun.

      Pfft - Central America ;-)

    2. im so sick of all of these natural disasters. i feel so fortunate to never go through something like this (i went through a flood by a hurricane but somehow managed for it to not destroy my house). i agree about the central america part. probably b/c ive already been there and i think my body has become too accustomed to this cool scandinavian weather that ill perhaps die in costa rica LOL :) and ive already been to costa rica and although i had fun, i have no desire to return. western canada on the other hand.... ;)

    3. Megan, I really hope you get to go to Western Canada! I'm sure Central America is great too, but I visited Alberta and BC a couple of years ago and it was the experience of a lifetime! :)

  2. somehow I managed to completely miss the floods in Alberta! not sure if that's just proof that I'm out of touch with the news, or if they just weren't covered very extensively here...either way, WOW those pictures are scary! I'm glad to hear that your family made it through okay.

  3. I'm glad you enjoyed your time in Canada! :) But those floods really are devastating! I can't really comprehend why you can't insure yourself against floods - from a business standpoint I suppose I understand, but morally? I just hope all those affected will be able to go back to their lifes as they used to be as soon as possible!

  4. My gosh, I didn't realise how bad the floods were and I thank you for bringing this to the front of my brain. I'm glad to hear that your family and friends managed to get away safely and I hope they can return to normalcy sometime soon x

  5. Excellent photos! Those floods are unreal...


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