Monday, July 15, 2013


Well,  it has been a while since I last did a blog due to the death of my beloved Mia. Those of you who are animal lovers will know my pain. I miss her so much as she was lovely natured and a beautiful animal. I will try to not let my sadness interfere with the blog.
We are now in Canada having visited Montreal and Ottawa. Before entering Montreal we passed a house with its own water slide. Some lucky child had very generous parents.

We passed through the town of Chambly after entering Canada and spent a nice afternoon there (it was our wedding anniversary). We had a nice meal and enjoyed watching boats come through a series of three locks. We had a laugh because on the lowest of the three locks was a mother duck quacking loudly. Her 8 chicks had been left in the lock above and were too young to fly. She made quite a racket and then seemed to realise she could fly up to her family, which she did.
 Momma duck was out of site but could be heard quacking loudly over the fall of the water.

Eight of her offspring a lock above their Momma.

                                   Momma flew up top join her offspring.
After we had docked the boat we walked back to the lock and saw a couple of the lock keepers leaning over the edge. Being nosey, I mean curious we peered over the edge and lo and behold a baby duck had got left behind as his Momma left the lock and he was high and dry on the lock timbers. The keepers attempted to get him/her and finally managed by capturing him in a net. They then placed him in a box and we are not sure what happened next.

                                         Duckling stuck on ledge of lock.
                                 Duckling being coralled by lock keepers.
Duckling caught in net and lock keeper calling someone to ask what to do with duckling. 

Montreal was interesting with its pedestrian walkways, restaurants with outdoor seating and flowers all over the place.
I tried taking some night shots and they did not turn out too badly.

  • Our English friend, Alan arrived on the 4th July and will be staying with us for approx 3 weeks. He was an usher at our wedding and we have kept in touch ever since.
  •  One of the highlights of our visit to Montreal was to the Botanical Gardens. They were having a special international festival called "Mosaicsculpture". This was a display of live flowers and plants made into different sculptures. All three of us had never seen anything like it and were so impressed. The soil is put into "stockinette", holes are then punched into the stockinette and the plants placed in the holes. The watering system is then added and voila, you have a magnificent display of mostly non-flowering plants.

You will have to forgive me as I could not decide which pictures to show you so I have included what I liked the best. Each sculpture had a story behind it and the name of the country which made the sculpture.

               I kissed the frog but my prince did not arrive on his white horse!!!

 These little fellas were made from ground refuse i.e. dead pieces of wood, moss, etc.
                   The same with the wild boars. They looked so realistic.
 I was so impressed with the horses made of out pieces of wood. This close up of them still looks so realistic.

With Gary in the photo it gives you an idea of the height and expanse of this sculpture.

                      This was the only sculpture made out of flowers not plants.

                              David, this is the one that reminds me of Bo.
                                                    I found Nimo!!!!!
                                     A bigger view of  the phoenix (Bo).
This was truly magnificent. It was approx 50 feet tall with some limbs having to bear the weight of birds weighing several tons. The birds are based on real birds that are in danger of becoming extinct if we do not start to look after the rain forests. At the base of the tree were 4 mammals, also in danger of dying out.

                                        A close up of the wood pecker.
                                              Close up of the parrot.
                              Close up of the iguana at the base of the tree.

The rest of the gardens were impressive, too. The weather that day was hot and humid, almost too hot.

To get to the Botanical Gardens we rode the subway which was clean, fast and quiet. I had to use a smattering of French but most people spoke English. However, I thought it was courteous that I should at least try and speak their language. After getting off the subway we passed the Olympic Park built for the 1976 Olympics. It was quite a complex.

 The roof of the stadium was originally designed to be lifted off but because of problems that idea was squelched. You could ride up on the outside of the tower in the lift and get an excellent view of the surrounding area.
I will call it quits here or you will all be bored to death. I will blog some more tomorrow.

I would like to pass on my condolences to the families and friends of the firemen killed in the line of duty in Arizona. Also, to the families and friends of loved ones lost in the Lac Megantic train derailment. You are all in our thoughts and prayers. 


  1. Was it the botanical gardens that I had the infamous squirrel biting moment? The photos of the sculptures are fantastic. I remember seeing Disney's statues but this just blows them away. I much prefer the real tree of life as to Disney's fake tree of life. Glad you're enjoying Canada, cannot wait to see you both in a few weeks.

  2. The gardens are just incredible- you take such wonderful pictures. How about a picture of Alan- haven't seen any good looking Englishmen since your dad and brother left the US.