Thursday, March 1, 2007

Thursday Walking Group

Every Thursday, year round, in all kinds of weather, my walking group meets at 10.30am and we explore different parts of the city and the environs. After our walk we have lunch together and over the years we have become a very close-knit group. We're an interest group of the larger Faculty Women's Club about which I've spoken previously.

It started many years ago as an offshoot of the hiking group. Some of that group's members were getting older and wanted their exercise in a less energetic way. When I retired, 8 years ago, I eagerly joined this group and was made very welcome.

Officially there are about 20 or so members but it's a good turnout if we get 10. Some of our members, who are unable to walk so far now or have various periods of incapacity due to injury or whatever, often meet us for lunch anyway.

One of our favourite walks, which we do often, is starting from the parking lot of the Vancouver Planetarium and Museum and walking along the south side of False Creek, via Granville Island to the Cambie Street Bridge where the walkway ends. This walk is by the water all the way so it is very beautiful and the city maintains the walkway which is paved so that it is never messy underfoot. It's five miles there and back and we usually stop in at Granville Island Market to have lunch on our return. Granville Island has a huge public market which is very popular and successful, with lots of parking, so we can meet the non-walkers easily and poke around a little before the return walk to our cars at the Planetarium.

There's an area like a food fair, with lots of different food stalls and big tables which we usually have to share. One time we shared a table with two ladies from Tacoma. One of them was very interested to know who we were. Did I tell you that we are a very international lot? That day the group consisted of an Australian (that would be me), a New Zealander, an American, a Welsh woman, a French woman, a Spaniard, a Chinese from Macao, a Russian, a Japanese, two Germans and a lone Canadian. The lady from Tacoma was a weekly columnist for the Tacoma newspaper and she wanted to write about us. She gave me her card and told me to check the online edition in the near future. Sure enough she did, we were there in her column.

So today we meet to do the Granville Island walk, the weather is as good as it gets here at this time of the year. Mixture of cloud and sun, with an expected high of 6 degrees Celsius.

On this walk we pass a tall deciduous tree with a huge bald eagle's nest near the top. It's been there a very long time and in recent years we've watched a pair of bald eagles arrive early in the year and use the nest. Once the leaves fill in we can't see much but we see them coming and going. A few weeks ago we saw one lone eagle sitting in the tree. Every week we check. Still only the one. I do hope the other one is still on its way.


Sarabeth said...

When I lived in Seattle, my husband and I spent some time in Vancouver. We walked around Discovery Park, were accosted by those black squirrels and cheeky chipmunks, and had a lovely time.

This post reminded me of that time.

Karen Ventii said...

I LOVE Vancouver-it's definitely in my top 10 most beautiful places visited!

jmb said...

Hi Sarabeth,
Ah, the Pacifc Northwest. So beautiful, bit rainy unfortunately. I love Seattle too, can't imagine not living by the sea. Always have except for two years in London. Did the Canada geese attack you too?

jmb said...

Hi Karen,
I'm glad to see you here. I love your site and have recommended it to others.
Vancouver is a lovely city, the mountains rise up out of the harbour, it's a wonderful sight.

Heather in Beautiful BC said...

Beautiful photo!

It's wonderful to see the Eagles - we have a pair nesting nearby and I see them every morning when I open my eyes.

Are you a member of 'Wetcoast Women'?

If not, I think you should join and submit this article - it would fit perfectly :)

mhr said...

For some reason the 1st picture (at the top) doesn't appear, all I get is a red cross in an empty box. The second picture is beautiful, superb composition and colours (did you take it?)
I love boats and I used to take a lot of boat pictures when I lived in Provence.
Although I have the opportunity to do the same here, I very rarely do so.
Your group sounds like a lot of fun (I wonder if people who attend are the same who belong to your "short book club"), but as I said before I'm not a "group" person. But I guess 10 people is a manageable group size :)

PS: I'd love to have a peep at the Tacoma article!

jmb said...

I'm sorry mhr, I don't know what happened with the first picture. I'll email you the post and see if that helps. Unfortunately I did not take the photos. I have just recently obtained a digital camera, a very good Canon, and I should be mastering it instead of fooling around with Blogger. Yes some of the "short book "club people are in the walking group, 5 I believe. Some of these people I have known for 45 years, since I came to Vancouver. We all shared the immigrant experience, no families nearby so we became each other's families. Strong bonds are formed in these circumstances. I should blog about this.
Au revoir

jmb said...

Yes mhr, I'm in Internet Explorer and the post is a mess. Also there seems to be a problem with the Lunch Bunch post as well, with an extra empty box. Of course I don't know how to fix it but I'll think on it. Do you have Firefox? I've been using it for the past year instead of IE.

mhr said...

I did try Firefox for a few months, but when IE released the 7 version, with tabs, I was delighted with it. I only use IE7 now.
As to the thumbnails problems, I think it's just a temporary Blogger issue. It will be fixed soon, I guess :)

jmb said...

See today's new post on Technical Problems, mhr. I'm thinking on solutions, if it's my problem.