Vancouver Variety….

103m mural Homer and Hastings

Vancouver is a great city and I’m lucky to be living here. One of its best attributes is variety! I get to explore the city on foot quite a lot, this is mostly from choice as it is certainly one of the best means by which to get to know your environment. There are so many nooks and crannies to discover; so much detail waiting to be revealed, history to be learned and it’s surprising just how many quiet, hidden places you can find. These can range from nature to bustling streets; it’s all there to be seen by the discerning eye and carrying a camera, or more likely a cell phone with camera, can be a great aid to seeing.

Today I enjoyed the peace and solitude found in the Momjiji Japanese Garden;

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the captivating back ally murals at 318 Homer Street downtown

108m back ally on Homer St.

and the joy of a song sparrow on top of a hedge on East Hastings.

 

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Of course there is much more including refreshment at a favourite cafe, ‘Platform 7′

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on East Hastings, and the wonderful sunshine which raised Vancouver’s temperature to 25 degrees. And there is always something unexpected,  today for example it was an abandoned piano!

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I’m posting a few more pictures which I hope give a taste of Vancouver. Enjoy.

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Close-up: dry stone wall, Momjiji Gardens.

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Iris adding colour to East Hastings.

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Building close-up.

Copyright © ddubolski 2014.

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Buying organic is not enough…

001ms apples in apple cider vinegar

Sadly even buying organic produce, as we try to do, is not necessarily enough to guarantee the optimum quality of one’s food. Today I have been soaking our ‘organic’ apples in a solution of apple cider vinegar to clean off the ghastly wax coating which someone in the food supply chain deems essential to ensure their well-being, at least in terms of shelf life. I don’t want to waste the nutritious ‘organic peel of expensive fruit but neither to I wish to consume a waxy substance the exact chemical consistency of which is a mystery to me, but almost certainly not conducive to good health. It is a rather damning testimony to the state of our food industry that one now needs to examine closely every store-bought item, especially if in packaged form, and of even greater concern that increasingly one needs a degree in chemistry to properly comprehend the true nature and potentially toxic ingredients of one’s food. Of course the real solution for the most part at least is to grow your own food organically but for those of us no longer able to do so vigilance seems to be the only recourse.

PS: While on the topic of home produce I am happy to report the continued progress of Scoby Max. Here are today’s pictures:

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Day 7…

001m Scoby Max day 7

So this is an aerial picture of Scoby Max on Day 7 of fermentation and it is clear he is starting to ‘bulk-up’ significantly and his appearance changing each day; I like to say he’s looking more and more handsome! I am happy to report there is still a lovely aroma emanating from the jar. We are looking forward to the day we can finally enjoy our first brew and also get started with a second. By then presumably Scoby Max will have done his reproduction duty and we will have another, little scoby to start a second brew.

Presumably if we had not opted for a bigger jar, wider surface area, our scoby would already be thicker than he is. However, I expect him to thicken in due course.

Fermentation: Day 4…

087m Kombucha brfew day 4

Clearly Scoby Max is growing and expanding to cover the full surface area of the jar, which is what we understood to be the normal progression; rather like fish growing in proportion to the surface area of water. So far he doesn’t seem to be thickening very much but this is after all only day 4 and we expect to allow up to 14 days to complete the fermentation process. meanwhile there is a discernible sweet and pleasing aroma emanating from the jar. I particularly like the sense that one is involved with a living form and creating something.

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PS: Scoby Max pic for day 5:

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For Kombucha brewing workshops in Vancouver BC check out Rosie at o5tea

Copyright © ddubolski 2014

 

Kombucha thrill day 3…

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Scoby Max is clearly alive and active and I’m hoping he’s doing exactly what he’s supposed to do and making a good job of it. Yesterday he rose to the surface of the jar just as predicted. I have to say looking at him this morning I immediately questioned his new appearance something akin to the surface of an alien planet!  Is this how a healthy Scobe should look? A slight panic ensued but help was at hand. A quick Google brought me in to the reassuring website of ‘Kombucha Mama’ and her wealth of knowledge. Confidence restored I eagerly await developments. This is fun!

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Copyright © ddubolski 2014

Kombucha thrill…

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I’m so excited! Partner and I attended a Kombucha workshop on Sunday afternoon at the o5tea on West 4th Avenue. Rosie, the young and vibrant young woman facilitating the workshop was brim-full of enthusiasm. In the course of an hour she had delivered a very clear and encouraging account of the pros and cons of making one’s own kombucha. Actually there seemed hardly any cons and a whole lot of pros and the entire process seems incredibly simple. We left with a starter kit, a Scoby we named Scoby Max, and a bundle of beginners’ enthusiasm. And behold, our first attempt is fermenting as I speak. Will keep you posted as to the finished product!

Copyright © ddubolski 2014

Call It What You Like….

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Synchronicity, fate, the Law of Attraction, call it what you like, I’m a firm believer that things don’t just happen by chance and that we actually create our own world. Of course I recognise that the worlds we create for ourselves are not necessarily what we wanted or at least what we thought we wanted, but that is because, as individuals probably very few of us have mastered the rules  of the game of life so to speak. Thoughts become things, that’s what I know, but with me, and chances are you may be the same, I haven’t yet mastered my thoughts, but I have to say when I do apply the Law of Attraction I’m never lacking in proof that it actually works. And staying up-beat and positive is an important part of the game for sure.

Yesterday, a little diffident, I decided to attend a talk at ‘Friends For Life’ titled ‘Embrace Your Death’.  The subject matter and biography of the speaker, Stephen Garrett, interested me. To be honest I don’t go there very often notwithstanding its excellent services and pleasing location and facilities. I’ve had membership for at least ten years but for whatever reasons, (I could think of a few) I haven’t really ‘clicked’ with the place.

However, off I went yesterday in the rain and as usual arrived early at 1:10pm for a talk that began at 1:30pm. I sat in the office while the receptionist tried to fathom out why my membership card wouldn’t register. At 1:15pm his office phone rings and someone informs him our speaker won’t be coming after all. Rather short notice and I’m a little disappointed and slightly irritated but hey, that’s life right.

Suddenly  a voice sounds behinds me. I turn and there is a friendly face known to me from way back but someone I seldom see. I didn’t know she has been volunteering at Friends For Life for as long as I have been a member. We chat and catch-up and in the course of doing so she relates her out-of-body experiences, a subject about which I am well-read and very interested. I can add her to the list of personal acquaintances who have actually experienced a Near Death Experience or Out of Body Experience and it’s fascinating!

So there you have it; as far as I’m concerned I felt it was meant to be; synchronicity at work and probably from my perspective a better deal than the talk that wasn’t delivered.