Sunday, August 18, 2013

Canada 6

Boy, am I having a good run. I never knew I had so much to say!!!!!! Gary and David would dispute that, no doubt!!!
The first photo I want to show you today is the T shirt my parents gave us for our wedding anniversary. It has the name of our boat on it plus our two flags - Old Glory and Union Jack. My T shirt unfortunately did not fit despite it being labelled as a women's extra large. I could not even get my head through the hole (now that should cause a few comments from my "fans").  Mum has had to re-order another one for me.

Travelling along Canadian waterways I have seen several stacked stone arrangements looking like humans in people's gardens. I have finally found out what they are thanks to a very kind young man in Kingston. They are called inukshucks and are stone figures originally created by the Inuits. Inukshuk means "to act in the capacity of a human". They are supposed to say "someone was here" and "you are on the right path". We passed a nice one made by the lock keepers.
The stone figure is on the top of the pile of stones to the right of the "heron" in the first photograph.
 Talking of the lock keepers, they do a wonderful job despite having their hours cut and made to operate at times, more than one lock. They are always so pleasant and helpful when approaching the lock or in the locks. So, I say thank-you to them. Another thing that is great about the locks is the landscaping, toilets and picnic benches. They are big tourist traps and are well used by people who come to see the boats go through the locks.
All the Canadians we have met have been so nice. If on land when we approach a lock, they come to our aide to help with mooring. Many of them are fascinated with our boat (it is not common, at all). We have only seen 2 others since leaving Florida. The homes on the waterfront that we have passed often fly the Canadian flag. I do like to see patriotism. The only complaint I have about Canada (and it is the same in the U.S. and U.K) is the graffiti. It is on many buildings, underpasses etc. Some of the people who draw/paint them are quite talented. It is a shame they cannot put their talents to a better use.
We went through a very interesting lock at Peterborough. It was a hydraulic lift lock built in 1904 to lift boats up and down 19.8 meters. The boats are lowered and raised in two water-filled chambers. Any movement in one chamber must force an equal and opposite movement in the other. To raise boats, the upper chamber is over-balanced by taking on an extra 30cm of water forcing the chamber downwards. 

The upper pan is on the right side of the lock.
A view of the pan from below.
In the pan and ready to be raised up approx 65 feet.
Boats in the pan with us.
The view from the top. We were surprised it took only a couple of minutes for us to get from the canal below up to the top level. We have another smaller lift lock to go through further up the Trent-Severn.
I forgot to mention that when returned to Toronto after attending the wedding in Las Vegas we saw many apartments being built which would really add to the population. Toronto is a very eclectic city with many different nationalities.
Look at all those new apartments. Every building in this photo is in the process of being built.

 An interesting view of Toronto taken from the bus window.
An interesting glass building in downtown Toronto. It had a twin at the other side of the road.

I have finally received my replacement telephoto lens which means I can start taking close-ups again. My first close-up was of a pair of loons. What a magnificent bird. I used to love penguins, then pelicans. Now it is loons. Their call, which is often heard at night is quite unique and eerie sounding. If you go on Youtube and type in "Loons" you will see and hear loons.

An immature loon.
Mom and baby.

It is very hard to see but on the back of the above jet-ski is a dog wearing its life jacket. There were 2 jet-skis each with a dog on the back. By the time I realised what was on the back, they had passed me by. We caught up with them later moored at a lock exercising their dogs on the land. I do not know how the owners stopped the dogs from falling off when the jet-skis went over the wakes of boats.
 OK, to end I will end with several photos I like.

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